Languages, Literatures and Cultures

The Grammar Guru
Editor: Éditions JFD
Author: Patrick Duffley, Ryan Fisher
Number of pages: 211
Edition number: 1
ISBN or internet key: 9782924651452
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Written in the form of a Socratic dialogue, the Grammar Guru is the first Grammar book written to instruct and entertain its readers – yes … entertain! Hirtle Walters, a.k.a. the Grammar Guru, is a retired linguistics professor who runs a pub-style restaurant not far from his former university campus. Louis Bonenfant is an English Studies student and aspiring English teacher who one day seeks out the Guru’s help. Through a series of weekly encounters with the Guru, Louis learns the difference between:

  • A verb’s state and action use.
  • The simple and progressive form as seen in sentences like I take three pills a day and I’m taking three pills a day or I like university and I’m liking university.
  • The simple past and present perfect form as in I lost my assignment and I’ve lost my assignment.
  • The present perfect and present perfect progressive form as in Your python has escaped and Your python has been escaping.
  • The modals can, could, may, might, will, shall, etc.
  • A real and an unreal condition.

Rather than inundate Louis with confusing rules and lifeless examples, the Guru instructs Louis on the meaning underlying the various grammatical forms. Through their encounters, Louis comes to the realization that the Guru’s meaning-based approach to teaching grammar and jocular character makes learning it much more rewarding and even fun. Also included in the book are a series of meaning-based exercises.

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