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Like (concise) Vs Like (wordy)

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imskpwr Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts
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Like (concise) Vs Like (wordy)

Post Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:03 am
Based on recent box office receipts, the public's appetite for documentary films, like nonfiction books, seems to be on the rise.

a. like nonfiction books

b. as nonfiction books

c. as its interest in nonfiction books

d. like their interest in nonfiction books

e. like its interest in nonfiction books

I am confused between A and E. I thought A was concise (appetite~interest) and the comparison is:
the public's appetite for documentary films seems to be on the rise.
in a similar way
the public's appetite for nonfiction books seems to be on the rise.

However, the OA says otherwise.

I think Like is to compare 2 nouns. But from this example it appears Like cannot be used for a Noun within a prepositional phrase (for + documentary films). i.e. Like can be used for only Subject Noun (Appetite) or Object Noun


Can any expert guide me on the subject matter?
Usually I have issues with Comparisons. I don't understand how to find Comparing elements. I choose mostly grammatically comparable elements.

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Top Reply
Post Wed Aug 02, 2017 10:22 am
One important rule of thumb: concision is almost NEVER the issue!

Yes, I know, the OG will sometimes describe something as "wordy" in the answer explanation. But if you look more closely, most things listed as "wordy" or "awkward" are actually redundant or illogical. You should ignore concision almost entirely, and focus first and foremost on MEANING.

In this case, what are we trying to compare? You're right that "like" is used to compare noun-to-noun. But the sentence is not really trying to say "documentary films are similar to nonfiction books." It's saying "the public's appetite for documentary films is similar to its appetite for nonfiction books" in some way.

In A, it sounds as if the sentence is saying "the public's appetite for documentary films that are similar to nonfiction books..."

Instead, we want to compare APPETITE to APPETITE. Only D and E do so. Since D has a pronoun agreement issue, we must pick E.

Also: please edit your post to include the source of this question. It is a copyright violation not to post your source.

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