The Broadview Guide to Grammar, Usage, and Punctuation
The Mechanics of Good Writing
  • Publication Date: March 15, 2024
  • ISBN: 9781554816774 / 1554816777
  • 320 pages; 6" x 8½"

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The Broadview Guide to Grammar, Usage, and Punctuation

The Mechanics of Good Writing

  • Publication Date: March 15, 2024
  • ISBN: 9781554816774 / 1554816777
  • 320 pages; 6" x 8½"

For many years, the coverage of grammar and usage in The Broadview Guide to Writing has received particular praise. Now, for the first time, that material is made available in a stand-alone volume. Readable, reliable, and comprehensive, The Broadview Guide to Grammar, Usage, and Punctuation is appropriate for students at all post-secondary levels.

The book is divided into four sections. The Grammar section provides unrivalled coverage of complete and incomplete sentences, dangling constructions, and other subjects that give many writers special difficulty. The Usage section offers sensible and up-to-date advice on hundreds of points that frequently cause confusion. The Punctuation section provides a wealth of helpful guidance on all aspects of punctuation, with particular attention paid to such vexed questions as when to use the colon and the semi-colon, and (when using quotation marks) how to properly integrate quotations into one’s own text. A final section, English as an Additional Language, gives a wide range of helpful advice on special issues that may arise for those whose native language is not English.

A companion website provides hundreds of exercises on every topic covered in the book itself. Many of these are interactive; on completing an exercise, students are told how they did—and explanations are provided as to why the right answers are right and the wrong answers are wrong.

This book is adapted from The Broadview Guide to Writing, which is available in American and Canadian editions


Comments on The Broadview Guide to Grammar, Usage, and Punctuation and on The Broadview Guide to Writing:

The Broadview Guide to Grammar, Usage, and Punctuation is a superb, comprehensive guide that I'll be adopting across all my writing courses. It’s easy for students to navigate, and it clarifies meanings of key terms in a way that other grammar guides do not. The coverage of run-on sentences and sentence fragments is particularly strong—as is the coverage of subject–verb agreement errors and of dangling modifiers. The coverage of special issues arising for those whose first language is not English is well thought-out. Throughout, the examples are excellent, spanning a variety of contexts and disciplines, and the text is highly readable, especially when compared to other guides I have used. The exercises on the user-friendly companion website are original and engaging; I will definitely assign these. The Broadview Guide to Grammar, Usage, and Punctuation fills a need for a detailed but easily comprehensible student guide, and it’s certain to be of use across a range of disciplines.” — Louise Kane, University of Central Florida

“This is by far the best grammar textbook that I have seen in many years.” — Andrey Reznikov, Black Hills State University

“Even the most useful reference guides are not always, well, shall we say, riveting. A refreshing exception is The Broadview Guide to Writing, which is smart, helpful, and even fun to read.” — Gerald Graff and Cathy Birkenstein, authors of They Say / I Say: The Moves that Matter in Academic Writing

The Broadview Guide to Writing is not only informative and impressive; it is smart—smartly written and smartly designed.” — Dennis Paoli, Co-coordinator, Writing Across the Curriculum, Hunter College, CUNY

The Broadview Guide remains the most readable writing guide available—at any price. Moreover, it’s sensible, and it’s complete. The authors assume nothing, but they don’t condescend.” — Jacky Bolding, University of the Fraser Valley

“There’s so much to like here: the sense of proportion, the sensible layout, the precision of the usage notes, the sound stylistic advice, and the examples…. The text is clearly informed by the best traditions of composition and rhetoric, but comes across in a disarming fashion with a common-sense approach…. Long after the course is over, students will want to keep this book as a manual of style and usage.” — Thomas L. Martin, Department of English, Florida Atlantic University

How to Use This Book and Its Companion Website

1 Grammar

  • 1.1 What Is Grammar?
  • 1.2 Parts of Speech
  • 1.3 Parts of Sentences
    • 1.3.1 Complete and Incomplete Sentences
      • Run-on Sentences
      • Sentence Fragments (Incomplete Sentences)
      •  Complete Sentences and Sentence Style
      • Acceptable Sentence Fragments
  • 1.4 Verb Forms
    • The Infinitive
    • The Simple Present
      • Subject–verb Agreement
      • Historical Present
    • The Simple Past
    • The Simple Future
    • The Progressive (or Continuous) Aspect
    • The Perfect Aspect
    • Conditional Constructions
  • 1.5 Mood and Voice
    • Active and Passive Voice
  • 1.6 Sentence Combining: How to Build Sentences

2 Usage

  • 2.1 Verb Issues
    • Dangling Constructions
    • Dangling Participles and Infinitives
    • Sequence of Tenses
    • Irregular or Difficult Verbs
    • Infinitives, Gerunds, Objects: “To Be or Not To Be?”
    • The Text in the Present Tense
    • 2.2 Preposition Issues
    • 2.3 Noun and Pronoun Issues
      • 2.3.1 Nouns
      • 2.3.2 Pronouns: Who Cares about Whom?
      • 2.3.3 Nouns and Pronoun Issues with Authors and Speakers
    • 2.4 Word Order
    • 2.5 Word Meanings
    • 2.6 Part-of-Speech Conversions
    • 2.7 Slang
    • 2.8 Word Conventions
    • 2.9 Joining Words
    • 2.10 Wordiness

3 Punctuation and Other Conventions

  • 3.1 Punctuation Marks
  • 3.2 Quotations
    • Direct Speech
    • Indirect Speech
    • Formatting Quotations
    • Integrating Quotations
  • 3.3 Capitalization
  • 3.4 Abbreviations
  • 3.5 Spelling

4 EAL: For Those Whose Native Language Is Not English

Appendix: Correction Key


Corey Frost, formerly Coordinator of the Writing Across the Curriculum Program at Brooklyn College, is now a professor in the English Department at New Jersey City University. Karen Weingarten is a professor in the Department of English at Queens College, City University of New York; a former co-Coordinator of the Introductory English program, she is also the author of Abortion in the American Imagination. Doug Babington, an Emeritus Professor in the English Department at Queen’s University, was for many years Director of the Writing Centre there. Don LePan’s other books include The Broadview Pocket Glossary of Literary Terms, How to Be Good With Words, and two novels, Animals and Rising Stories. Maureen Okun is a professor in both the English and the Liberal Studies Departments at Vancouver Island University; her books include Sir Thomas Malory: Le Morte Darthur: Selections and The Broadview Pocket Guide to Citation and Documentation.

  • • Highly readable
  • • Clear and comprehensive coverage of difficult topics such as complete vs. incomplete sentences and dangling constructions
  • • Extensive companion website featuring interactive exercises
  • • Wide-ranging coverage in the chapter “For Those Whose Native Language Is Not English”

Included in the purchase price of this book is free access to a passcode-protected website. Here you will find a wide range of exercises on English grammar and usage—many of them interactive, so that you can see immediately if you have answered correctly (and, if you haven’t, discover where you have gone wrong). The site also includes academic writing resources and style guides.