Forsyth is funny. And uniquely educational. If 'The Etymologicon' wasn't evidence enough, this must do the trick. It's nice to have such 'high-brow' content conveyed in an accessible and scholarly manner. Excellent.
I love explorations into the English language, and this is one of the best. Forsyth deconstructs various forms of rhetoric using examples from Shakespeare to modern pop songs. If you were to read the chapter headings without dipping into the book you'd think this was one long snore-fest, but Forsyth is informative and funny with it. Here is an example from "Metonymy and Synecdoche": 'I wandered lonely as a cloud ... Clouds are not lonely. Especially in the Lake District where Wordsworth wrote that line. In the Lake District clouds are remarkably social creatures that bring their friends and relatives and stay for weeks.' Or, from the chapter on Hyperbaton: 'adjectives in English absolutely have to be in this order: opinion-size-age-shape-colour-origin-material-purpose Noun. So you can have a lovely little old rectangular green French silver whittling knife. But if you mess with that word order in the slightest you'll sound like a maniac.' Who knew?
Recommended by a good source but seemed a bit old fashioned to start with. But as I get closer to the end I am appreciating the disciplined structure of Rhetoric. I am telling everyone about it. Glad to have it, when I finish I will start reading it again. Dennis Batterham