Category Archives: malaprop

March reading

March was kind of meh for reading in the early part of the month.

As mentioned, I was less than impressed by the portion of the Captive Prince trilogy that I read.

Patricia Briggs’ Fire Touched came out early in the month as well.  I’ve given up on her Omega books set in the same world; as I mentioned when I read the last book, Anna’s dismissal of Charles’ desire to not have children Seriously Pissed Me Off and struck me as profoundly offensive in a way that would’ve had readers up in arms if their positions had been swapped.  Mercy…eh, I have mentioned before that her acquisition of a new power  or tool of power or conveniently powered/talented friend whenever one is needed seems lazy.  And it happens again here. Plus, Mercy’s internal monologing in which she knows better than Adam about how he feels about god/religion strikes me as profoundly patronizing in much the same way Anna “knowing best” about whether Charles should want to have kids did.    Yeah, stick a fork in me, I’m done.

I’m almost finished Rebecca Traister’s All the Single Ladies (non-fiction), which I’m really enjoying.

And I’ve got the first installment of Ms. Marvel to read next.  And the web comic Check Please.

~~~

Random:  I was reading an NPR piece on “Boston Chinese” food and ran across one of my language pet peeves, the use of cache for cachet.  They are spelled differently; pronounced differently; and have completely different meanings.  How freaking difficult is it to use the right word.  Boston Chinese does not have “a certain cache”; it has a certain cachet.  FFS.

Advertisements

1 Comment

Filed under Book related, language generally, malaprop

Subject vs. object pronouns

Okay, look, the proper usage of “Name and I” versus “me and Name” or “myself and Name” is not that difficult.  Every time I see an author, aspiring, self-published, or otherwise published, use “Name and I” inappropriately, I cross that writer off my list of potential authors-to-try.  Because if they can’t figure that out, what other grammar butchery will I encounter in their writing?

Yes, it sounds more formal and “correct” than “me and Name” but that’s not the point and sounding correct isn’t the same as being the correct usage.  That’s called hyper-correction, I believe.  They are different parts of speech, and the usage is not a function of being or sounding more formal.

2 Comments

Filed under language generally, malaprop

Word selection

Reading random selections and samples from my Kindle this evening, trying to settle on something new to read, I had a random thought:  there are some words that have a disproportionate impact on me as a reader.  It’s utterly irrational.

  • Vital — Nora Roberts especially likes to use “vital” as an adjective to describe goals, objects, ideas that are extremely important to her characters.  There’s nothing wrong or inappropriate about the usage, but she’s used it enough that I notice the usage.  It’s a Thing that I associate with her now.
  • Lavish — Many, many authors like this word, especially during love scenes, when attention is lavished on one body part or another.  Usually  a body part that is not a particular erogenous zone for me, so I roll my eyes and move on.
  • Lave — Again with the laving during love scenes.  Or the “lathing”, which seems to be a common substitution…probably by people who have never used a lathe?
  • Moist — This is not used by any particular author or in a specific context, it’s just a word whose sound and mouth-feel during pronunciation bothers me; I get a visceral image of spittle, damp, and mold, which is not always the intended image.

Like I said:  utterly irrational reader association and reaction to perfectly innocent words.  Well, except for that lathe, which can do a lot of damage to tender body parts if used in lieu of laving.

5 Comments

Filed under language generally, malaprop

Mì querida

Mì querida

Q: Can anyone tell me what’s wrong with this phrase?

A: Mí is a direct object pronoun. The possessive pronoun used above should be written as the accentless “mi”. And there is no “mì” — Spanish uses acute accents as a rule; this mì has a grave accent, which is not used.

It’s a little copy editing thing, but it threw me right out of the narrative of a book I was reading the other day.

Unrelated: overheard on the train tonight: “She’s a beringer of bad news.” A bearer of bad news? A harbinger of doom? A Napa Valley vineyard of bad news?

Leave a comment

Filed under malaprop, spanish