Bout of Books 12.0 – Update #1

Bout of Books

Hello readers and fellow bout-of-bookers!
Here’s my small update of the first three days of the Bout of Books 12.0 readathon.

As predicted, I finished reading Throne of Glass on Sunday evening – about 10 minutes before midnight. So in the morning of the readathon, I started reading The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco. Even though I had already read the first 62 pages in German, I decided to begin from the beginning to see how much I had understood correctly from the German translation. One of the things that surprised me was the narrator’s voice, which in the Finnish translation is a very pronounced dialect. In the German translation, the narrator’s voice didn’t feel as vernacular, and I must admit that the Finnish translator’s choice did turn me off a bit from reading. There were many occasion upon which I stopped reading and reach for the German copy to compare the translated passages. However, as I do not speak Italian, I cannot be sure which translator is more correct in their choice of style.

Despite the not-so-great start, I finished the day having read 100 pages of The Name of the Rose and feeling very satisfied with the way to story was going. Part of the books magic is the philosophical discussions and debates around religion and sciences, which I found to be super fascinating.
Pages read: 100
Currently reading: The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco

So after the fantastic start on Monday, expectations were high for Tuesday – and not met. Despite the fact that my break last until the 9th and that I had no plans for Tuesday, I didn’t get much reading done. I did read something – the morning paper, a few articles online, some recipes, blog posts, etc. – but it turned out I wasn’t in that much of a reading mood on Tuesday. What can I say – it happens. However, as my plan for the readathon was not to stress too much about reading, I was rather pleased that I did manage to read about 50 pages of The Name of the Rose. So I’m still holding tight to my goal of reading every day.
Pages read: 57
Pages read in total: 157
Currently reading: The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco

The third day of Bout of Books saw me open a book already in the morning, but after a few pages of The Name of the Rose, I had to put it down and focus on arranging things for the upcoming semester. Later in the evening I decided to take a break from the Middle Ages and picked up A Woman of No Importance by Oscar Wilde instead. I love Wilde’s witty plays and I enjoy his satirical take on the British upper classes and their pretenses. A Woman of No Importance was no exception on this front, but I’m also noticing that the more I read Wilde, the more I begin to pick up certain characters and types that keep repeating in his work. Whether it is a good or a bad thing, I have yet to decide.
Pages read: 104
Pages read in total: 261
Currently reading: The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco

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2 thoughts on “Bout of Books 12.0 – Update #1

  1. That’s interesting to hear about the translation. I’m always curious about the accuracy of translations, but I can only read in one language so I have the accept that version. It’s cool that you can actually compare it to something even though it isn’t the original.

    • Agreed. Reading parts of the different translations makes me want to read also other translations of The Name of the Rose, such as the English translation, and to compare it to that. The ingenuity in literary translation is partly the challenge that the translator has in “re-writing” the work to another language and culture, but also the liability to the original.

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