Can no more mistake than

MaryamSeresht

Senior Member
Persian
Hi,

May I ask if the bold part means while he can't mistake a can of beans for a pearl necklace, so he can't mistake his characters from another?

"As a result of this, of course, the characters themselves grow apart in the writer's mind, become entirely separate people, and by the end of a book or a story the writer can no more mistake one for another than he can mistake a can of beans for a pearl necklace."

Many thanks.
It's from "Garlic in Fiction" by Shirley Jackson.
 
  • cubaMania

    Senior Member
    It means that it is just as unlikely that he would mistake one character for another as it is unlikely that he would mistake a can of beans for a pearl necklace. In other words, to the writer each character appears very different from every other character. The simile emphasizes just how very different each character seems to the writer, because a can of beans and a pearl necklace are very different from each other.
     
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