Review: Talk to the Hand

TITLE: Talk to the Hand
AUTHOR: Lynne Truss
PUBLICATION: 2005 by Gotham Books
FORMAT: Hardcover


When did the world stop wanting to hear? When did society become so thoughtless? It’s a topic that has been simmering for years, and Lynne Truss says it’s now reached the boiling point. Taking on the boorish behavior that for some has become a point of pride, Talk to the Hand is a rallying cry for courtesy. Like Eats, Shoots & Leaves, Talk to the Hand is not a stuffy guidebook, and is sure to inspire spirited conversation.


I found this book at the Dollar General for three bucks. I didn’t need more books but my self imposed restriction isn’t set to go into effect until January 1st, so let the book-purchasing binge reign! So I think it is time for reading something different and I do need to read more non-fiction after all that doesn’t fall under the heading of history or biography.

I confess to laughing quite often while reading this book so it is needless to say that I enjoying it. The humor peppered throughout this narrative of the missing good manners in our modern world kept me turning the pages for quite some time. I read a good chunk of it in one sitting, but it’s only around 200 pages in length so this book didn’t take much time at all. The author’s note at the beginning, apologizing for the frequent use of “eff” in the book, was quite amusing. I found myself reflecting on my own behavior and whether or not it could be considered rude by some of these general standards. I try to show courtesy, respect, and deference where it is due. Is it a lost cause? I don’t think so.

I think the chapter about interacting over social networks, but not really being a social individual outside of that computer world is something pretty spot on with our world today. It reminds me of that commercial I seen on television once about a girl who was incredulous about how her parents on Facebook only had a handful of “friends” whereas she had hundreds of them. At work I hear everyone talking about Facebook and often they try to get in touch with me through texting, but they all fail to realize that I don’t have the text option on my phone. I really only have my phone for emergencies so I don’t tend to use it in regards to much else except for calling to let people know I am on my way or ask if anything needs to be picked up before I arrive at my destination.

Overall it was a pleasant distraction from my usual reading fare. I have a friend who has read the author’s previous book on grammar and I will be passing along this volume to her when next I see her. She said that Eats, Shoots, and Leaves was a good book, so I think I’ll be looking for it at the library at some point.



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