I recommend you the book

Pitt

Senior Member
German
Hello,

as far as I know is correct:
I recommend the book to you.

I'd like to know if this sentence is possible:
I recommend you the book.

Cheers!
 
  • dreamlike

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I don't think you could say this -- it would be a common mistake which is often made by non-native speakers of English. Such a construction would be possible in my language, too, so I can see where you're coming from :)

    There are a lot of ways to say it to choose from:

    I recommend that you read the book.
    I recommend reading the book.
    I recommend you to read the book.
    I recommend the book to you.
     

    dreamlike

    Senior Member
    Polish
    This has the same problem as the poster's sentence: "you" in the object position. "Recommend" doesn't take an indirect object. "I recommend you for the job."
    I must confess I've made that list with the aid of OED, which gives such an example:

    recommend somebody to do something
    We'd recommend you to book your flight early.

    Maybe it's "would" that makes the difference. Is it?
     

    The Prof

    Senior Member
    I must confess I've made that list with the aid of OED, which gives such an example:

    recommend somebody to do something
    We'd recommend you to book your flight early.

    Maybe it's "would" that makes the difference. Is it?

    Like Myridon, I find that sentence a little odd. However, if it's in the OED ...

    What I would most expect to see/hear there would be "We'd recommend (that) you book your flight early". In other words, without 'to'.

    The 'would' makes no difference - the version I have given could also begin "We recommend ..."
     
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    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    recommend somebody to do something We'd recommend you to book your flight early.

    Total nonsense on this side of the water, at least.

    (Sometimes, it seems that writers of "learners'" books intentionally try to lead the poor souls astray. We see this often here.)
     

    dreamlike

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I don't think that OED's lexicographers want to intentionally mislead anyone. Maybe it's just an error that somehow crept in.
     

    entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    While some speakers might be able to treat the verb this way - naturally enough, as similar do work this way - I and I think the great majority of English speakers can't say this. 'Recommend something to someone' has no ditransitive alternative, and I'd change it if I found it in text I was editing.

    Edit. I'm referring to the ditransitive alternative :cross:'recommend someone something'. The construction with personal object and infinitive sounds better to me, though I still don't think I'd say it. Of this, the OED has examples from Jane Austen and P.G. Wodehouse and a modern newspaper:

    Let me recommend you, however, as a friend, not to give implicit confidence to all his assertions.
    Mr. Sipperly..recommended him to place his affairs in my hands.
    People taking the drug..are recommended to stop and to see their doctors..to discuss alternative treatment.

    In this sense the verb is being used as an exact parallel to 'advise', which is not the case for the original construction under discussion.
     
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    Pitt

    Senior Member
    German
    Thanks to everybody! I have taken this text from the Longman Dictionary:
    !! You do not say 'recommend someone something' • What wine do you recommend (NOT recommend us)? You can recommend something to someone • I bought this album after a friend recommended it to me.

    According to this indication I understand it like this:
    I recommend the book to you = correct
    I recommend you the book = incorrect.

    How do you think about this?
     
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    SevenDays

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    I've noticed that many grammar books consider "to you" an indirect object, and add that "to" is dropped when the indirect object "to you" is placed before the direct object. Perhaps this is done to simplify things, but it inevitably complicates matters. To me, that "to you" is a prepositional phrase complement, which is not the same as the indirect object pronoun "you." The PP "to you" doesn't become the IO "you" simply by dropping "to;" these are two distinct syntactic elements. It seems to me that's one reason we get awkward constructions such as we'd recommend you to book your flight early and I recommend you the book. The choice of the PP "to you" or the IO "you" is tied to the semantic nature of the transitive verb; some verbs, such as "send," take a direct object and an indirect object (I will send you the book), and others only the a direct object, like "recommend" (I recommend the book to you; I recommend that you read the book). In "I will send you the book," no one would infer that "you" is being sent, so "you" is the IO. However, in "I will send you on a mission to Mars," that "you" is the direct object because "you" is what is being sent.
    Cheers
     

    yakor

    Senior Member
    Russian
    This has the same problem as the poster's sentence: "you" in the object position. "Recommend" doesn't take an indirect object. "I recommend you for the job."
    What about
    -I recommend you to read the book in sense that I recommend you for reading the book (to the child).
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    If you read the prior posts I think you'll find that there is general agreement among American English and British English members that you can recommend something to someone but not recommend someone something.

    In other words:

    I recommend this interesting book to you. :tick:
    I recommend you this book. :cross:

    Why? Because that's how "recommend" works as a verb. I can say "I will recommend you to him" to mean that I will speak highly of you when I speak to him and recommend that he hire/use you. Since it has this possibility I think we assume that "you" following "recommend" is what or who is being recommended.
     
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    faccia

    New Member
    English North American "west coast"
    i would just say "i recommend that book" or "that book is good i recommend it"
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    i would just say "i recommend that book" or "that book is good i recommend it"
    Welcome to the forum, Faccia. :)

    Your wording is correct, but please note that in English, the first person pronoun "I" is always capitalized, as is the first letter in a sentence, and each sentence ends with a period: I recommend that book. That book is good; I recommend it.
     

    yakor

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Since it has this possibility I think we assume that "you" following "recommend" is what or who is being recommended.
    But what about
    -I recommend you to read this book(for child)?

    Welcome to the forum, Faccia. :)

    Your wording is correct, but please note that in English, the first person pronoun "I" is always capitalized, as is the first letter in a sentence, and each sentence ends with a period: I recommend that book. That book is good; I recommend it.
    Thank you for this correction, otherwise I began to think about the "new construction" in English. :)
    But what do you mean by saying ""I" is always capitalized, as is the first letter in a sentence"?
    -She saw that I and he were going to the shop. (I is not the first letter here).
    There are a lot of ways to say it to choose from:

    ...
    I recommend you to read the book.
    ...
    But could "you" mean the person who is being recommended for reading to someone?

     
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    JamesM

    Senior Member
    But what about
    -I recommend you to read this book(for child)?

    No, not even that one. :) There is no case where it is standard English. You might hear or see "I recommend you read this book" but that is a case where we drop "that" from the sentence. The full sentence is "I recommend that you read this book".



    Thank you for this correction, otherwise I began to think about the "new construction" in English. :)
    But what do you mean by saying ""I" is always capitalized, as is the first letter in a sentence"?
    -She saw that I and he were going to the shop. (I is not the first letter here).


    "S" is the first letter in that sentence. It is capitalized. I is also capitalized because it is the first person pronoun. When Parla wrote "'I' is always capitalized, as is the first letter of the sentence" it means "I is always capitalized. The first of the sentence is also always capitalized."

    But could "you" mean the person who is being recommended for reading to someone?

    Can you explain this question in different words? It's not clear.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    Taking up this old query,

    But could "you" mean the person who is being recommended for reading to someone?

    I take this to mean that "I recommend you to read this book" is valid if the intended meaning is "I recommend you as a suitable person to read this book (to someone else)". Yes, it's fine if that is indeed what is meant.
     

    Ivan_I

    Banned
    Russian
    I take this to mean that "I recommend you to read this book" is valid if the intended meaning is "I recommend you as a suitable person to read this book (to someone else)". Yes, it's fine if that is indeed what is meant.
    I have recently come across this sentence in an exercise.
    My boss recommended me to apply for this position. - I think that's the same case.
     
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