Building Great Sentences by Brooks Landon
How to Write the Kinds of Sentences You Love to Read

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Passionate and erudite, but with sharply focused appeal.


Based on the bestselling series from The Great Courses, Building Great Sentences celebrates the sheer joy of language—and will forever change the way you read and write.

Great writing begins with the sentence. Whether it’s two words (“Jesus wept.”) or William Faulkner’s 1,287-word sentence in Absalom! Absalom!, sentences have the power to captivate, entertain, motivate, educate, and, most importantly, delight. Yet, the sentence-oriented approach to writing is too often overlooked in favor of bland economy. Building Great Sentences teaches you to write better sentences by luxuriating in the pleasures of language.

Award-winning Professor Brooks Landon draws on examples from masters of long, elegant sentences—including Don DeLillo, Virginia Woolf, Joan Didion, and Samuel Johnson—to reveal the mechanics of how language works on thoughts and emotions, providing the tools to write powerful, more effective sentences.

About Brooks Landon

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Dr. Brooks Landon is Herman J. and Eileen S. Schmidt Professor of English and Collegiate Fellow at The University of Iowa and Director of the University’s General Education Literature Program. He lives in Iowa.
Published June 25, 2013 by Plume. 287 pages
Genres: Education & Reference. Non-fiction
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on Apr 03 2013

Passionate and erudite, but with sharply focused appeal.

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NY Journal of Books

Reviewed by Stevie Godson on Jun 25 2013

Demonstrating exactly what it is that he believes makes a sentence great...the professor shares his basic strategies for manipulating words in such a way that they will take the reader on a journey of the writer’s choosing.

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