OK, Let's learn how to make suggestions in English. :-)
1 First person suggestions with let's or shall I/we
let's + infinitive:
- Let's repair it ourselves.
shall we is sometimes added at the end.
- Let's get the paint today, shall we?
- shall I/we + infinitive:
- Shall we invite Mike to the party?
Suggestions with let's or shall we can be answered affirmatively by yes, let's.
- a) Shall we see the film?
- a) Let's take the tent.
- b) Let's not!
Or it can introduce a negative suggestion:
- let's not arrive too late!
don't let's could also be used here:
- Don't let's arrive too late!
2 First and second person suggestions
why don't we/you + infinitive or why not + infinitive/expression of time or place:
- Why don't we meet in the park?
- Why not meet in the park?
- a) Where shall we meet?
- b) Why not here?/Why not in the park?
In colloquial English what's wrong with/what's the matter with + noun could also be used:
- What's wrong with the hotel?
what/how about + gerund/noun:
- a) Where shall we sleep?
- b) What about this hotel?
- What about something cheaper?
suppose I/we/you + present or past tense:
- Suppose you offer/offered to reward her?
3 First, second or third person suggestions with suggest or propose
suggest (+ possessive adjective) + gerund, or suggest that + subject + present tense/should.
propose is used in exactly the same way but is slightly more formal than suggest.
In the active, suggest + should + infinitive is more formal than suggest + a present or past tense.
- I suggest (your) selling it.
- We suggest that you should sell it. (formal)
- propose that the secretary sends in/should send in a report, (formal)
- I propose that a report (should) be sent in. (formal)
With should be it is possible in Formal English to omit the should, leaving the be alone , as shown above.
Suggestions in indirect speech Suggestions can be reported by:
- suggest/suggested (+ possessive adjective) + gerund, or
- suggest that + subject + present tense/should, or
- suggested that + subject + past tense/should, or suggest (any tense) + noun/pronoun:
- Mark suggests/suggested (our) having a meeting.
- Mr Cox suggested a meeting.
- Mark suggests that he sells/should sell his house.
- Mark suggested that he sold/should sell it.