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My Relationship with Translated Books

SPARKLING LETTERS BOOK BLOG_ MY RELATIONSHIP WITH TRANSLATED BOOKS

Hello everyone! ♥

Welcome to my first actual discussion post in a while 😀 I have to admit, coming up with discussion topics isn’t as easy when you’re currently not reading much, so this one is something I took from my list of post ideas I composed last year. Most of my ideas are no longer relevant, but a few surprisingly still are.

As you could guess from the title, today I’ll be talking about translated books and my relationship with them. I love it, hate it, can’t live without it, yet don’t wanna live with it anymore. Sounds confusing? I’ll explain soon 🙈 a little background : I live in Indonesia and my native language is Bahasa. I’ve learned English ever since I was a toddler, but I didn’t start reading books in English until I was a late teenager.

Disclaimer : in this post I’ll only be talking about books translated from English to your native language, not from foreign language to English. 

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When I first started reading, I read local books. And comics. I love them, but soon I was running out of things to read, so I started to branch out and read translated books. My first book was Harry Potter (surprised, surprised). I admit, I LOVED translated books. It opened so many doors for me. I mean, if I only read local books, I wouldn’t be the reader I am today.

A few years later, I started to get curious and I wanted to read English books in their original language. Funny thing was, there was this cheap books sales selling English books so I thought, this is perfect coincidence! But you know what I bought? I bought… Much Ado About Nothing by Shakespeare… Idk, Shakespeare was a big name and I thought I was gonna start big, but it was freakin classic! I didn’t even like reading classics in my own language, let alone in English ðŸ˜‚ one page in and I already leafed through my Oxford dictionary a few times.

Long story short, I gave up.

It was in 2013 when I eventually read an English book—from end to end. I was following Divergent series and when Allegiant came out, I was so impatient I couldn’t wait for the translated version to come out!! So I bought the original version and surprisingly, I enjoyed it. For sure I didn’t completely understand every words, but I understand enough to get by. It opened even more doors for me, because now I get to read more : books that the translation version haven’t come out and books that didn’t get translated, among others. 

My English gets better and better each day and it becomes a habit for me to buy and read books in English. I befriend bloggers from all over the world who also read English on daily basis. It’s the new normal. Until I met people in real life who “mock” my choice.

I met a few coworkers who also love to read. We’d talk about books we both love and own and when they asked for recommendations, I gave them a few titles I love. When they asked to borrow the books, I told them my copies are in English and if they mind. Aaaaaand they started implying that I’m pretentious or above them by reading in English instead of the translated ones. And they talk about how English books are more expensive and why would I opt for them instead. The comments went on, but the most annoying part is when they resent me for buying books in English because then they can’t borrow the books.

I was like??? Excuse me but I buy books for MYSELF, not for you people who can’t even respect my choice.

So that’s where this post came from. 

What I Love from Translated Books

  1. Like I said, it opened SO MANY doors for me. I wouldn’t be able to read Harry Potter at such a young age if it wasn’t because of the translated version.
  2. Translators are miracle workers!! Even if sometimes the translations aren’t perfect, I admire their works so, so much ♥
  3. I get to read books in foreign language. Ruby Red trilogy by Kerstin Gier is one of my favorite series and it was in German. If it wasn’t translated to English, I wouldn’t have read it by now.
  4. They’re indeed cheaper. You could buy the translated book for half the price of the original version.

What I Dislike from Translated Books

  1. The jokes don’t get translated as well. You know how sometimes a joke is in idioms but in the translated version they translate it literally so you lose the point? That happens a lot. I first noticed it when I read Percy Jackson. I felt like the jokes were too stiff and frankly not funny, and when I looked at the original version, I found out why.
  2. Sometimes the translated versions are too formal. In Bahasa (or maybe in other languages as well) different context require different speaking style. But a lot of times I found in translated books, the characters speak like they are writing reports—way, wayyy to formal, and highly unusual. I know that writing informally would look messy, but there’s that line between completely formal and completely informal. Local books usually find that balance, but translated books often don’t.
  3. They take a long time to release. Sometimes I want to read books right on their release date and waiting for the translated version is agony. Although I admit, nowadays translated books get released a lot faster than it used to. Probably only a month or two later than the original version.
  4. A lot of books I want to read don’t even get translated.

Well if you see the list above, you’d find four pros and four cons. So, it’s a tie, right? But still, for me the cons outweigh the pros so I’d still choose to read the original version in English 😛

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That’s the end of my discussion! I must admit, I’m a little rusty after a long while not writing this kind of post 🙈 now LET’S TALK!! Do you have you own experience with translated books. Especially for international bloggers whose first language isn’t English out there, what made you decide to read books in English? Do you still read the translated version? Tell me! 😀

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53

The Diversity Corner #2 : March Updates, Asian Representation, and April New Releases

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Hello everyone, welcome to the second edition of The Diversity Corner! ♥

ICYMI, I talked about Muslim representation in books on my first edition, you could read it here. Today I’ll be talking about Asian representation and I teamed up with several Asian bloggers to put this post together! 😀 But before we get there, as usual, I’m bringing you some diversity-related news and updates ♣

P.S. it’s gonna be long, so grab your drink, settle into a comfortable position, and read 😉 Continue reading

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Figuring Out Your Perfect Blogging Schedule

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Hello everyone! ♥

Today we’ll be talking about blogging schedule. I know a lot of you must have had your own schedules, but when I talked about it on my wrap up post last month, a lot of bloggers said that they still haven’t figured out their own schedule and they really want to change that. So here I am, sharing what I learned so far about things to consider when you want to create a blogging schedule 😀 

Before we start, let me make it clear that there is no one right way to blog. You can post whenever you feel like it. Any schedule (or no schedule at all) could work, as long as you’re happy with it. But if you’re a super organized, perfectionist bean like me, here are some suggestions that might help ♥ Continue reading

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How to Make A Bookworm HAPPY

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Hello everyone! ♥

I’m supposed to post a discussion every Saturday but several things happened, so I’m a day late 😂 last week I was so, so swamped with work and for once I didn’t have any discussion post drafted. I had to work half day on Saturday so I thought I was gonna whip up a quick post on the afternoon. The thing is, I got sick on Friday night and turned out… my biggest fear came true. I got chicken pox 😂😂😂 I never got it as kid so I always have that fear of eventually getting infected.

Yesterday I felt so bad and was high on fever I physically didn’t have the energy to even open my laptop, let alone wrote a post ahaha but today I felt stronger and better and I’m ready to get back into blogging! Anyway, I’m gonna have to stay home for a week so I’m gonna be around for a while, that is depending on my health, obviously 🙂

Anyway, today I’ll bring you something fun : how to make a bookworm happy! ♥ I hope we could all relate and if there’s a non bookworm reading my post, I hope it’ll help you understand us better 😛 let’s get started! Continue reading

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The Diversity Corner #1 : February News, Muslim Representation, and March New Releases

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Hello everyone, welcome to the first edition ever of The Diversity Corner! 

You might remember my post about my stance as diverse book blogger and the introduction of my feature. I’m a bit nervous but HERE I AM, with its first edition ♥ Today I’ll be talking about Muslim representation. I chose this topic because this is the one topic that is so close to my heart. I’ve been living and learning it ever since I was a baby, so this is the topic that I’m most comfortable talking about. I promise you, I won’t be preachy! I won’t sell or promote my religion to you. I just want to talk about its representation in book–or rather, the lack there of 😂

But before we get there, let’s start with the first two sections : diversity news & updates and diverse book bloggers spotlight ♥ Continue reading

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Why We Need More Positive Girls Portrayal in Books

SPARKLING LETTERS BOOK BLOG- WHY WE NEED MORE POSITIVE GIRLS PORTRAYAL IN BOOKS.jpg

Hello everyone! ♥

Today we’ll be talking about something that’s been on my mind for quite a while : girls representation in books. Now you may be wondering what I’m talking about because don’t we get so many representation already? Well, we do. After all, most book covers are photos of girls. But are they positive? Well, we’ll see in a bit 😛 what pushed me to actually write this post was seeing some of my twitter friends talked about the same thing. It made me realize that my opinion was valid and not just my own… you know, that other people share the same opinion with me.

But before we talk about WHY we need more positive portrayal, let me talk about the negative portrayal first. Continue reading

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Let’s Talk: Do Reading Plans and Rules Work For You?

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Hello everyone, welcome to another discussion post! ♥

At the beginning of the year like this, you must have found a lot of reading challenges and read-a-thon all across the blogosphere. You might also see a lot of posts regarding the bloggers’ TBR for those challenges. I have to say, they’re all super interesting! I want to take part in those challenges & read-a-thon but based on previous experiences, chances are I’m gonna fail. This made think about other reading plans and rules such as making monthly TBR or doing a book buying ban, and their effectiveness.

So today I’m throwing one question for us to answer : do reading plans and rules work for you? Because for me, they generally don’t. Let’s see some of these examples! ♣ Continue reading