Who or whom?

The excessive length of this rather cumbersome sentence from Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs, which begins 5 lines before the section photographed, is awkward…

But am I having a brain freeze moment here?

My brain balks at the clumsiness of the whom in the following sentence.


I kind of know it is right and can probably conjure up an explanation which is likely to use phrases like

it is an objective relative pronoun introducing a relative clause in which Ricky is the object of the verb phrase “surprised to see” which would naturally attract the personal pronoun him if re-written as “I was surprised to see him lingering near the punch bowl”.

But it still feels awkward.

As I say, possibly a minor inherent awkwardness exacerbated by an excessively long sentence.

Editors, where was your red pencil?


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