Blurb Your Enthusiasm: An A-Z of Literary Persuasion

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'A small masterpiece. There is something funny, notable or awe-inspiring on every single page’ Jenny Colgan, Spectator


A joyful celebration of books – the perfect gift for bibliophiles, word lovers and anyone who’s ever wondered, should you judge a book by its cover?

We love the words in books – but what about the words on them? How do they work their magic? Here is a book about the ways books entice us to read them: their titles, quotes, covers and, above all, blurbs – via authors from Jane Austen to Zadie Smith, writing tricks, classic literature, bonkbusters, plot spoilers and publishing secrets. It’s nothing less than the inside story of the outside of books.


And it answers questions like:

  • Why do some authors hate blurbs so much they burn their own books?
  • Should all adjectives be murdered?
  • Is blurbing sometimes maybe lying?
  • Is it true that (checks jacket) you need an animal on a book’s cover to make it a bestseller?
  • What are the most terrible blurbs of all time?  


Join Penguin publishing word wizard Louise Willder – five thousand blurbs written, mostly avoiding the phrase ‘unputdownable tour-de-force’ – to discover why we should judge a book by its cover. Even this one. (It’s an unputdownable tour-de-force.)


‘The bookiest book about books you’ll ever read – I loved it’ Lucy Mangan

‘Truly delightful...I couldn’t have had more fun’ Benjamin Dreyer

‘Very funny, erudite and profound. A delight!’ Nina Stibbe

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Oneworld Publications
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