I have always heard to: not use exclamation points in your writing, not even in your dialog. I was reading Rangers Apprentice by John Flanagan, and because it is a book designed for young kids, I am finding it very exciting to read, but I did notice that he used lots of exclamation points in his dialog when characters would get angry or show some kind of excitement. I thought about it and surely this would be great for kids but not for adults, and so I picked up a James Patterson book, a young adults book at that, and surely enough he used exclamation points as well. Now I thought again: Young adult book needs that style of writing, so I picked up one of Patterson's adult novel's and he also was using lots of exclamation points. I mean it is a part of the english language right? It would seem just as important as a period or a question mark. Is is fine to use exclamation points, or is there another way of expressing excitement, maybe with italics? It was bothering me, and I needed to know. Thanks.