In this lively and informative book, Howard Richler imparts his fascination with the richness of the language which is fast becoming the globe's newest lingua franca. Filled with surprises about the language we use everyday, Take My Words offers information about the history of words, their shifting meanings, and the essential playfulness of language. Richler includes chapters on puns, palindromes and malapropisms, and develops a series of entertaining puzzles, quizzes and word games to challenge the reader's skills. Take My Words also includes chapters on the dangers and consequences of mistranslation - from Kennedy's famous "Ich bin ein Berliner" to the bombing of Hiroshima. Ending his tour of English with a special Canadian section, Richler discusses the importance of Native languages to the Canadian experience as well as the ways in which Quebecois French has influenced English.
Howard Richler is a longtime logophile who has served as a language columnist for several newspapers and magazines. He is the author of seven books on language including: The Dead Sea Scroll Palindromes (1995), Take My Words: A Wordaholic's Guide to the English Language (1996), A Bawdy Language: How a Second-Rate Language Slept Its Way to the Top (1999), Global Mother Tongue: The Eight Flavours of English (2006), Can I Have a Word with You? (2007), Strange Bedfellows: The Private Lives of Words (2010), and most recently How Happy Became Homosexual: and Other Mysterious Semantic Shifts (2013). Richler resides in Montreal with his partner Carol and his wheaten terrier Molly, fascinated by the changes in both official languages.