The entire place chose that moment in which to shudder

park sang joon

Senior Member
Korean
A sorcerer, the protagonist got into his best friend Luke's dream about "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland."
He can't get out of this dream and stays at a bar sipping beer.
He just now stunned Luke.

As I did this the lights grew dim and there was a moment of utter silence.
Then I slammed the mug back onto the bartop. The entire place chose that moment in which to shudder, as if form an earth tremor. Two bottles fell from a shelf, a lamp swayed.
["Blood of Amber" of The Great Book of Amber by Roger Zelazny]
I think the underlined clause sounds odd to me.
And I was wondering why it is "The entire place chose that moment in which to shudder," not "The entire place chose to shudder that moment."
Thank you in advance for your help.
 
  • Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    And I was wondering why it is "The entire place chose that moment in which to shudder," not "The entire place chose to shudder that moment."
    Your version makes it sound like you are trying to use "shudder" transitively, with "that moment" as its direct object. (Of course that doesn't work.)
     

    park sang joon

    Senior Member
    Korean
    Thank you, Glenfarclas, for your very kind answer. :)
    I meant "The entire place chose to shudder at that moment."
    And I think my version is rather natural.
     

    Glenfarclas

    Senior Member
    English (American)
    Thank you, Glenfarclas, for your very kind answer. :)
    I meant "The entire place chose to shudder at that moment."
    And I think my version is rather natural.
    As Julian says, there is a different emphasis. Your sentence makes it sound like they "chose to shudder (instead of doing something else)." In the original sentence, they "chose that moment (instead of different moments)."
     
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