And vs. SO

Hello guys, I’m wondering if anyone here could explain to me why (C)so is incorrect in this context.

I’ve wanted to read The Diary of a Young Girl for months,______ today I finally borrowed the book from the library.
(A)and
(B)since
(C)so
(D)until

To me,(A) is fine, but I’ve been thinking if (C)is possible. I mean, could I interpret this whole sentence as a cause-effect relation? Or is this sentence only viewed as a linear sequence, first one action and then the other?

Thanks.
Original Post
quote:
I’m wondering if anyone here could explain to me why (C)so is incorrect in this context.
Hi, Elle,

What quiz are you quoting? The sentences you want us to consider are these:
    (A) I’ve wanted to read The Diary of a Young Girl for months, and today I finally borrowed the book from the library.

    (C) I’ve wanted to read The Diary of a Young Girl for months, so today I finally borrowed the book from the library.
"And" is certainly more natural there than "so." Were it not for the adverb "finally," "so" would work, though the sentence would suggest, rather awkwardly, that the speaker only buys a book after wanting to read it for months.

With the adverb "finally," however, "so" is definitely out of place. The speaker's long-lasting desire to read the book simply forms the background of the speaker's act of borrowing it at the library. Compare:
    (1) I had been thirsty for over an hour, and I finally went to the drinking fountain.

    (2) I had been thirsty for over an hour, so I went to the drinking fountain.

    (3) ? I had been thirsty for over an hour, so I finally went to the drinking fountain.
Both (1) and (2) make sense. In (1), the speaker's being thirsty for over an hour formed the background of his going to the drinking fountain.

In (2), there is the suggestion that he wouldn't have gone to the drinking fountain unless he had been thirsty for over an hour. The speaker likes or needs to tough it out!

In (3), which doesn't really work, there is a conflict between the background reading of (1) and the explanatory reading of (2). Neither (3) nor (C) is grammatically incorrect, though.

David,

I don't really see the conflict with using so and finally in the same sentence.  For example, I see nothing wrong with the following sentence:

  • I had been dreaming of going to Thailand for years, so finally I just went ahead and did it.

Mostly, though, I wanted to test some of the formatting functions in this new platform.  Is there a way to indent without bulleting?

Elle, are you actually reading Anne Frank's Diary?  It's a terribly tragic story.  She was executed when she was only fifteen years old.

Thanks for your reply, David. It’s a multiple choice question on this year’s comprehensive English assessment for junior high students in Taiwan. I don’t know if I’ve got it right, were you saying  that “finally” didn’t usually collocate with “so”? 

Hey, Docvguestconteibutor, Nah, I’ve never   felt like reading the diary. Haha~ In fact, I wasn’t aware that it’s a famous book until I was reading your post.

The name, or at least the screen name, is simply DocV.  The idiots that revamped the site reformatted my name into this ridiculously unmanageable text string.

Of course, your name means "she" in French, and as far as I know doesn't mean anything in Chinese as it's spoken in Taiwan.

I don't want to dissuade you from reading the book.  It's worth reading.  I'm just warning you that it's not a happy story.

Yours truly,

DocV

Note: At the time I posted this, my name was showing up as DOCVGUESTCONTRIBUTOR and there wasn't a bloody thing I could do about it.

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