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English definition of “hook”

hook

noun [C]     /hʊk/ informal
MARKETING something that is used to attract customers' attention, and encourage them to buy a product or service: Special deals on bestsellers are used as hooks to sell volumes from publishers' back catalogues.
be on the hook (for sth/to do sth) US informal to owe money or be legally responsible for something: The cleanup plan called for the companies, which are on the hook for cleanup costs, to dredge contaminated sediments from the river. If the investment company fails, they are on the hook to pay the loan.
off the hook having escaped from a difficult situation or punishment: be/get off the hook Don't think you're off the hook on taxes just because you were paid in cash.get/let sb off the hook The minister was last night under fire for letting the big banks off the hook.
(Definition of hook noun from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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