throw the book at somebody

throw the book at (one)

1. To apply all possible criminal charges to a lawbreaker; to impose the maximum possible punishment or jail sentence against a convicted criminal. After his third offense, the judge threw the book at the criminal, making parole all but an impossibility.
2. To punish or reprimand someone as severely as possible. The disciplinary board threw the book at him for the derogatory tirade he leveled at his employees.
See also: book, throw

throw the ˈbook at somebody

(informal) punish or criticize somebody for as many things as possible: The police stopped me for speeding and threw the book at me for everything — faulty lights, dangerous tyres, no insurance...
See also: book, somebody, throw
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