Tuesday, September 06, 2005

If they need a proofreader, I'm available

I've just finished reading a book that is a prime example of appalling proofreading, and it was published by no less an illustrious international publishing house than Penguin Books. In contrast, the edition of To the Lighthouse that I recently read was a cheap paperback (I bought it for less than $5.00) and when I came across one or two typos in that book -- such as then instead of them -- I put it down to keeping the costs down at Wordsworth Classics. But this other book was from Penguin, a new-release trade paperback that cost close to $30, and I felt it should have been done better.
To list just a few of the egregious errors (the ones I can remember without looking them up): at least twice, "women" was used to describe a single female person; the author felt that her holiday was a "right-off" instead of a write-off; she found that she couldn't "breath"; there are many sentences with dubious grammar and missing words; and, probably the most laughable, in one paragraph a rescue officer was trained in ropes and rappelling, but in the next paragraph, on the same page, he was trained in ropes and repelling!
Well, I was repelled.
Okay, nobody's perfect, but Penguin should be more perfect than most if it wants to maintain its reputation.


Linda said...

I actually came back to say - "Ruddy Spelling Checkers. They will never replace a Human Bean."

*ducks for cover*

Sharon said...

I would be interested to know the title...