Jumping sharks and dropping mics
A collection of “modern idioms”, phrases that are now a part of our vocabulary at large.
Gareth Carrol presents a collection of "modern idioms", which have become a part of our vocabulary in the past 50 years or so. In most cases, idioms such as "raining cats and dogs", that colour our everyday communication, are deeply rooted in culture and history. However, just like words, new idioms emerge in language, and many have entered our vocabulary through, TV, movies and the internet. These modern idioms can be dated very precisely. Jumping Sharks and Dropping Mics finds the origins of these idioms, and charts their development.
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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. Loved reading about the origins of idioms I hear often. Would recommend this book for most anyone. Just know it is written by a brit, so if that style doesn't work for you, this may not either. ~ Kady Burns (Reviewer), NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. This book is sooooooo interesting and listed a lot of phrases that I use all the time, some without even realizing where they come from. I can’t wait to drop one of these facts into conversation and humble brag about all my knowledge! ~ Gillian Wright (Reviewer) , NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. Gareth Carrol’s Jumping Sharks and Dropping Mics is an entertaining read. Carrol provides background information with several sources on modern usage. The book is well researched. ~ Emily Posedel (Librarian), NetGalley
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars. Brilliant! Fun and witty with all the background detail of where those idioms began. Lots of TV, film and modern culture references, really enjoyed dipping in and out of this. Especially enjoyed discussing parts of this with my son who has autism, he can sometimes take things literally and struggle to understand what people mean when they use certain phrases. Had some great chats about when we might apply some of these idioms and learned a lot! Ideal for those who love language, great to dip in and out of. We made a quick family quiz out of some of the facts, Great gift for the curious, really interesting and useful book, highly recommend! ~ Martha Reads Books (Reviewer), NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. Ever wondered why people say 'Ten four' or what is exactly meant by a 'Keyboard Warrior'? If so, then look no further because Gareth Carrol has all the answers you need. Short but sweet, Jumping Sharks and Dropping Mics is an exploration into the wonderful world of the modern idiom. Divided into several chapters, Carrol follows the origins of idioms from sports and the silver screen to idioms from modern literature and the online world. Well-researched and highly entertaining, you will come away from this book with a new-found understanding of English language's most popular sayings and gain some new idioms for your own everyday use. If you are interested in etymology or are simply curious about the English language and how idioms work, Jumping Sharks and Dropping Mics is the perfect addition to your bookshelf. ~ Jessica Crawford (Reviewer), NetGalley
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars. This is an excellent book for use in classes with students particularly English Language lessons where you can learn where sayings are derived from. Plenty of good examples to keep students interested. Equally good conversation pieces for family get together. ~ RACHEL GARLICK (Educator), NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. What a great resource! This book explains idioms: their meaning, origin, and uses. The book features idioms from television, movies, the internet, sports, modern literature, and a miscellaneous section entitled, “The Best of the Rest.” For example, in the literature section, we learn about a “catch-22,” which comes from the novel of the same name by Joseph Heller (1961). Readers learn what the phrase means, a bit about the novel, and modern uses of the term, such as the “Brexit Catch-22.” This book, as I mentioned, is a great resource for “word nerds” like me, teachers, language arts students, and writers. I highly recommend it! ~ Bobi Page (Educator), NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. So many of the idioms in here I was not aware of where they came from. I kept driving my family nuts saying "did you know where _________ originated?". I enjoy books like this with information that you can drop into conversations later. ~ Vicky Zblewski (Educator), NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. If you have a curiosity about every day language, or have a love for wanting to know why we say what we say, then this book on modern idioms is the place to go.........The book is an interesting mixture of Internet related, book related, TV related and movie related sayings. Written from a British perspective, there are a few I have never heard of, but most have become universal. Very enjoyable to either read straight through, or to jump from expression to expression to see from whence it came. ~ Laura Testa-Reyes (Reviewer) , NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. A decidedly British take on idioms and sayings that we all use often, as well as quite a few interesting ones that you’ve probably never heard. This was a quick, enjoyable, educational, read that was quite interesting. If you’re a word nerd, I would definitely recommend this book. ~ Sharyn Berg (Educator) , NetGalley
When this book appeared in NetGalley, my interest was peaked as I'm often one to use phrases (which I later learned were called idioms) without knowing their origins. This light-hearted read not only delves into the stories as to the roots of these strange lexicons we use but also gives you one or two that you might have never heard of. At times I did feel as if the history was a bit too detailed (arguably 'overegged the pudding' - an idiom in itself) but an enjoyable read nonetheless. A perfect gift for that annoying person in your life who wants to pause you mid-conversation to ask you "do you know why we say that?" or someone for whom English isn't their first language - just to prove their struggles in grasping why 'a spade is called a spade' isn't just theirs. ~ Jonathan Isaacs (Reviewer), NetGalley
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. I’m very pleased to be the first person to rate and review this lovely guide to modern idioms. It’s absolutely worth checking out, especially if you love words and the way they come together to sometimes say something completely different than the sum of the individual components of the sentence would suggest. This book was exactly the sort of engaging etymological guide to idiom that nay word nerd can…well, nerd out over. It’s light and fun and gallops through different modern mediums, from books to tv to sports to present the readers with origins for the popular (and some not so popular) sayings. It is heavily skewed in British direction, but a good idiom is a good idiom, irrespective of its place of origin. I actually learned some new ones, including the titular one, which sounds like some kind of a great surfing adventure but actually refers to the time when a quality of creative work drops down in and the creators behind it get desperate, this is most popularly used for tv shows, when their makers resort to drastic measures to revive public interest in them. For that and more, check out this book. It’s etymology lite, informative and entertaining, without ever getting bogged down by pedantism or taking itself too seriously. It’s also charmingly slim, so it goes by like a proper quick fun without ever overstaying its welcome. Things were learned. Fun was had. The amateur linguist in me was delighted. Recommended. https://advancetheplot.weebly.com/ ~ Mia D (Reviewer), NetGalley
An absolute delight: I wish I'd written it myself! The range of applications in new contexts is second to none. It blends etymology, social history and current usage, bringing together a wealth of British and American examples. ~ David Crystal, author of The Stories of English, Let’s Talk, How Language Works, and many more books on language.
Who knew there were so many modern idioms? Gareth Carrol has brought the idiom dictionary up to date and assembled a light-hearted and informative treasure trove of expressions that we may well know, but whose origin we might not have thought about. I've learnt so much from this book, which is sure to extend any reader’s knowledge of the English language. ~ Alison Wray, Professor of Language and Communication, Cardiff University, UK
Smart, funny and crammed full of fascinating facts. The perfect book for word nerds everywhere. ~ Gavin Extence, author of The Universe Versus Alex Woods.
Gareth Carrol gives us an expert's tour of the hotspots where popular culture meets etymology. A rich dive into the wheres, whys, and hows of linguistic memes. ~ Lynne Murphy, author of The Prodigal Tongue and Professor of Linguistics, University of Sussex, UK
Confronting what we take for granted in what we read, hear, write and say is not an easy job, but this book does it with precision. The devil, as they say, is in the detail, and the inherent charm of the English language's near-countless set pieces is forensically - but affectionately - laid bare. The highlights are the quirks of the sporting lexicon - from hairdryers to squeaky bum time - the examinations of which will make more than a few football writers question the world they live in. ~ Adam Hurrey, author of Football Clichés.