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This 98-page work is the Elizabeth Bennet of style books. It might not be the most handsome style book and it might not be the smartest and it isn't the longest and it certainly isn't the most useful, but it is pretty and pithy and practical.

It is, to be exact, a charming book.

It describes 60 ways prose stylists have been turning phrases for over 2,000 years. Did you notice my unusual use of multiple conjunctions in the second sentence above: and, and, and? That's known as a polysyndeton. This book explains why and how to use such a thing.

This little book is not only charming, it's also a rebuke to the left hemisphere. On the first pages, Quinn shrugs off the left hemisphere's emphasis on usefulness and rules, stating that a "figure of speech is an intended deviation from ordinary usage."

The left hemisphere values the static: the unchanging, the rules. A figure of speech breaks the rules, but never for the sake of breaking the rules. It breaks the rules for the sake of . . . . it's hard to say. It's hard to quantify or dissect why it breaks the rules. I guess I'd say that a figure of speech breaks the rules for the sake of the page. A figure of speech wants the page to be more beautiful, more charming, more striking. (My lack of a conjunction here is called an asyndeton.)

A figure of speech is something you create for its own sake: it is a slice of art.

And whenever you create or do something for its own sake, with no concern for acquisition or gain, you're feeding your right hemisphere.