Tag: Mother Tongue

Mother Tongue by Bill Bryson

Posted June 23, 2010 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Non-Fiction / 0 Comments

Mother Tongue by Bill BrysonTitle: Mother Tongue (Goodreads)
Author: Bill Bryson
Published: Penguin, 1980
Pages: 270
Genres: Non-Fiction
My Copy: Paperback

Buy: Amazon (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

Recently I read Made In America by Bill Bryson, so I thought it would be appropriate to read Mother Tongue as well. Though there was a fair chunk of similar information in both books, Mother Tongue is just more relevant. While Made in America focused on the history of English in America; Mother Tongue focuses mainly on the history of English in general. Trying to cover questions like, “Why is there a ‘u’ in four and not in forty?” or “Why do we tell a lie and tell the truth?”

Bill Bryson does a great job of teaching and keeps the book interesting and sometimes humorous. Though the format and the style of the books are similar, I would recommend Mother Tongue over Made in America simply because the information is more relevant and covers all aspects of the English language.

Recommended for all English geeks, this book will give you a deeper understanding of the language as well as grammatical structures like amphibology. My wife might also be happy to hear that the book covers the topic of onomatopoeia.