Anat Ninio's important new book places the syntactic learning process under close scrutiny. The focus of the book is on the characteristics of linguistic input and the resultant output, which, she shows, do not necessarily follow the orderly uniform processes assumed by some versions offormalistic linguistic theory. Unique to this book is its reliance on very large English corpora of parental speech and child utterances, revealing surprising new facts about the input and output of syntactic development. Drawing on linguistic theory (the Minimalist Program, grammaticalization), Complexity Theory (Self-OrganizingCriticality) and quantitative linguistics (corpus linguistics, Zipf curves), it analyzes the input and output languages both theoretically and empirically, building on the contribution of the different source theories in a detailed and explicit manner. This book presents a highly novel perspective on the acquisition of syntax, one which will be required reading for those in the field of developmental psychology and psycholinguistics.