Book review: The English Grammar Workbook for Adult

The English Grammar Workbook for Adult

The English Grammar Workbook for Adult: A Self-Study Guide to Improve Functional Writing,
by Michael DiGiacomo

Rockridge Press
Language Arts/Grammar & Punctuation
208 pages


Buy the book

Some grammar books may seem too abstract. The English Grammar Workbook for Adult has the genius to apply its content to everyday situations.

Part One is made up of ten chapters, each focusing on a grammar category (adjectives, adverbs, etc).
Part Two is to apply your knowledge in your everyday life, like at school, at work, in social situations, etc.

Each point is clearly explained, with lots of examples, as well as mention of exceptions. Now, don’t even start to complain about all the exceptions in French grammar, there are also a LOT in English grammar, as is shown on page 5 for instance:

The English Grammar Workbook for Adult page 5Some colored boxes highlight common but embarrassing mistakes, such as this: should you write “Him and I” or “him and me”? For me, as a native French, I see right away the grammatical nature of the pronoun, but I know it’s not that obvious to lots of American readers.

What I really like is that after each point presented, you have an exercise to practice what you learned, this is essential. There are multiple choice questions, charts to fill in, words to underline, and all kinds of other exercises, including writing exercises. For the latter though, the answer may not be completely helpful, and you are going to need a tutor to check if you made some mistakes.

I’d like to highlight chapter 10, that focus on building blocks: topic sentence, paragraph body, paragraph conclusion, and obviously the important transition words. So if the book seems too basic at first, it actually builds up and is really helpful at developing your writing skills.

This is even more obvious with Part Two, with lots of advice to apply in your everyday life. For instance at school, the author explains how to write a college admission essay, a research paper. For work, you learn how to perfect your résumé, your cover letter, a professional e-mail, and much more.
You also need to write correctly for more fun circumstances, and they are covered here as well, for instance casual invitations or love letters (hmm, do these even still exist??).

You need something more practical, like vocabulary related to finding housing or discussing medical issues? It’s included.

If you think this is old school and you don’t need any of this, the last chapter is about texting and adapting to digital communication. The important thing is to keep writing. “Keep working at it, keep learning, and remember, your last mistake is your best teacher” (page 161). 

At the end are offered some cheat sheets, for instance on some irregular verbs. And if you need even more to go further, the author includes a list of useful books and websites.

The author has based this super helpful guide on his experience, as he formed his own ESL tutoring company, he hosts a podcast and has a YouTube channel.

VERDICT: The perfect tool both for ESL and EFL students, from basic grammatical rules to practical and even creative writing.

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What other good English grammar book would you recommend?

In full compliance with FTC Guidelines, I received this book free of charge from the publisher through The Callisto Publisher’s Club. I was in no way compensated for this post as a reviewer, and the thoughts are my own.


7 thoughts on “Book review: The English Grammar Workbook for Adult

  1. This sounds like a great resource. For teachers, I really like “Teaching English Grammar” by Jim Scrivener. “English Grammar in Use” by Raymond Murphy is a very thorough student workbook. Neither of those has the practical application part, though, so that would be really useful.


    • Thanks Michael for your wonderful book, and for stopping by. I posted my review on Barnes & Noble, Powell’s, and Indigo. Not on amazon, they have banned me, like so many other bloggers. Let me know if you want me to post it anywhere else


  2. Pingback: Six degrees of separation: from Hamlet to Hercule Poirot | Words And Peace

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