Penguin Shows the Way

Very late, but in case  you didn’t see Penguin’s press release about their new series Penguin Now!, here it is. The series will replace all full stops with exclamation marks, as a way of reaching younger readers formed by the immediacy of cell phones and similar devices.

One of their editors, Mae Dappersonne, explains:

“By using exclamation marks over and over again, the reader is reminded of the urgency of the story at the end of every sentence. It’s a great way of preventing potentially inattentive readers from tuning out, putting the book down and wandering off, without altering the original text too much.

“Also, exclamation marks are intrinsically just plain fun, adding an air of frivolity and serving to soften the edges of some of the heady subject matter to be found in a great deal of classic literature. We think it’ll make them more palatable for people who want to read these great books without getting depressed.”

Among the examples in the press release is this from Dostoevky’s Crime and Punishment:

“Pain and suffering are always inevitable for a large intelligence and a deep heart! The really great men must, I think, have great sadness on earth!

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