Punctuation marks

The beauty of the ampersand and other keyboard symbols

This is such a great idea: a book with one short essay per punctuation mark or typographical symbol. Of course, our commas, ampersands and exclamation marks all come from somewhere; all were invented at some point or another and their stories are ever-changing. Computer coders, for example, have recently moved previously unsung but elegant marks such as the hashtag and the ‘at’ sign back to centre stage. Claire Cock-Starkey is a confident and likeable host and makes a witty crack about her own surname in her essay on the hyphen. She somehow elevates what could have been a nerdy primer into something grander, and at various moments the book becomes