wFeb 20, 2010

Lost in translation?

I keep bouncing really hard off of novels/stories originally written in Japanese and then translated to English.

I'm not trying to read The Tale of Genji or anything, but they are three different types of stories (Moribito: Guardian of the Spirit by Nahoko Uehashi; Usurper of the Sun by Housuke Nojiri; Hardboiled by Banana Yoshimoto).

I think it's the word choice that bothers me the most. I'll be in the groove, and then suddenly there's a string of overly sentimental statements decorated with adverbs, and it takes me a minute to gain my footing again and keep going. Except that now I've kind of stalled out on all of them.

I don't have this problem with manga, but manga, like comics, is almost always pure dialogue and very little narration.

I'm sure that it would be different if I were able to read the books in the original Japanese.

Does anyone else have this problem with reading English translations of Japanese novels? Or possibly any recommendations of really well-translated books?


scribbled mystickeeper at 8:31 AM

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