A guide that’s a bit text-heavy but filled with appealing advice for house hunters.

READ REVIEW

HOME BUYING IN 30 MINUTES

BUILD YOUR TEAM, GET YOUR MORTGAGE, AND CLOSE THE DEAL. THE QUICK GUIDE TO DOING REAL ESTATE RIGHT.

A real estate expert offers his thoughts on the most important aspects of buying a home.

Debut author Morrison was a home inspector in Greater Boston for 25 years and a contributor to numerous publications covering real estate and construction. In this book, he shares his expertise with readers who may be buying a home for the first time or looking to improve their experience in an increasingly tough market. The author lays out the pitfalls that many homebuyers often fall into—including choosing the wrong agent to work with, not hiring a real estate attorney, not conducting a thorough inspection, or making the wrong decisions when choosing a mortgage—and then structures his chapters around each topic. “By the time you finish this guide,” he promises, “you will know how to assemble a team of real estate professionals that will advocate for your best interests.” The book includes some helpful charts and graphs that explain the basic math of mortgages to house hunters, breaking down income levels and corresponding payments and interest rates. Mainly, though, it’s filled with Morrison’s personal wisdom, as when he advises home purchasers to seek the help of an attorney early in order to make the whole process go as smoothly as possible. He also makes clear arguments against choosing friends and family members as agents, attorneys, and lenders. Instead, he urges readers to ask loved ones to recommend other professionals—and then do homework on each one they suggest. Morrison also warns that one should be skeptical of buzzwords, such as “green,” when evaluating what previous owners have done to improve a home’s efficiency. However, although Morrison’s prose is succinct and efficient, its density makes it more than a 30-minute read despite the promise of the book’s title. More visual elements, checklists, and charts might have helped to make the book even more dynamic and accessible.

A guide that’s a bit text-heavy but filled with appealing advice for house hunters.

Pub Date: Nov. 14, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-64188-024-4

Page Count: 108

Publisher: i30 Media

Review Posted Online: Nov. 15, 2018

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Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

SEVERAL SHORT SENTENCES ABOUT WRITING

New York Times columnist and editorial board member delivers a slim book for aspiring writers, offering saws and sense, wisdom and waggery, biases and biting sarcasm.

Klinkenborg (Timothy; or, Notes of an Abject Reptile, 2006), who’s taught for decades, endeavors to keep things simple in his prose, and he urges other writers to do the same. (Note: He despises abuses of the word as, as he continually reminds readers.) In the early sections, the author ignores traditional paragraphing so that the text resembles a long free-verse poem. He urges readers to use short, clear sentences and to make sure each one is healthy before moving on; notes that it’s acceptable to start sentences with and and but; sees benefits in diagramming sentences; stresses that all writing is revision; periodically blasts the formulaic writing that many (most?) students learn in school; argues that knowing where you’re headed before you begin might be good for a vacation, but not for a piece of writing; and believes that writers must trust readers more, and trust themselves. Most of Klinkenborg’s advice is neither radical nor especially profound (“Turn to the poets. / Learn from them”), and the text suffers from a corrosive fallacy: that if his strategies work for him they will work for all. The final fifth of the text includes some passages from writers he admires (McPhee, Oates, Cheever) and some of his students’ awkward sentences, which he treats analytically but sometimes with a surprising sarcasm that veers near meanness. He includes examples of students’ dangling modifiers, malapropisms, errors of pronoun agreement, wordiness and other mistakes.

Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-307-26634-7

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2012

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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