Of Essence & Appreciation

Of Essence & Appreciation

Or why a vast amount is lost in translation

(This article will primarily focus on creative works translated from English to Japanese)

A video version of this review can be found HERE.

I have recently begun exploring the world of critiquing creative works on YouTube (a dangerous pastime, I know… ) and I came across a video analyzing Hayao Miyazaki’s marvelous film,「 千と千尋の神隠し」, or, as it is known in English, “Spirited Away”.

The YouTubers who analyzed the work, Daniel Greene and Merphy Napier, are both excellent and have a wealth of interesting content in their channels, but a few points arose from their analysis that I felt were inherent issues when a non-native speaker attempts to analyze a translated work. The video can be found here, and I feel it is well worth a watch.

I will state at the outset that I have no idea how knowledgeable either of these reviewers are of Japanese language or culture. Further, please understand that what I present here is in no way an issue unique to these two reviewers. I feel their analysis was very well thought out and presented. The issues lie in understanding the fundamental difficulties in transferring a creative work from one language to another, and it is my contention that distance, method of expression, and cultural factors all play a part in why quite a bit is lost in the translation.

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Book Review: Wheel of Time, Book 13: Towers of Midnight

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Wheel of Time, Book 13:

Towers of Midnight

The thirteenth installment in Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series was an overall excellent book with a great balance of action, exposition, character development and plot progression. This balance has been the bane of many books throughout the middle of this series, but since the eleventh installment it has fully returned to form.

My full video review can be found HERE

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Book Review: Wheel of Time, Book 12: The Gathering Storm

Wheel 12

Wheel of Time, Book 12:

The Gathering Storm

This was an enjoyable read and a further uptick in the overall quality of the series. Following in the footsteps of Knife of Dreams, this book maintained a nice pace and provided a wealth of interesting plot progression. This book also had a good balance of exposition and action, and was perhaps the most satisfactory book in the series for me to this point. With that said, here are my main thoughts about the book:

You can also see the video review of this book HERE.

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Book Review: Wheel of Time, Book 11: Knife of Dreams

Wheel of Time Book 11: Knife of Dreams

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After several books of scant plot progression and painfully slow pacing, Knife of Dreams is practically a plethora of concluded plotlines. It felt as if all the main threads of the past nearly four books were gathered up in this installment and tied off in short order. Interestingly, this installment was quite a bit longer than the previous four yet was much quicker to get through because nearly each chapter was a fast-paced rush toward some form of completion. Continue reading

Book Exchange

36 possible books for the price of 1!  Sounds great, right?

Okay, I am going to throw the ugly word our there now… it’s a pyramid scheme.  BUT A GOOD ONE!  The only thing you do to participate in this is buy one (1) book and send it along.  Then gather up six friends who want to play along and have them do the same.

If you send along your book, and you can find some brave souls who want to participate, you can get up to 36 books back from this… for the price of 1 book!

I don’t like money making schemes.  Book making schemes though?  I’m all for it.

I bought my book and sent it along, and if that is all it costs me, I am happy to have done it.  If you would like to have a few books come your way and spread literacy and the love of it around, please like this post.

But!  Only like this post if you want to participate.  You can email me at my gmail address (located in the “contact me” section of my blog)  and I will send you the rest of the details.

Let’s spread some book love around!

Free Book Giveaway!

Hello fellow bloggers.  I am hosting a book giveaway and one (1) lucky person will be running off with a free copy of Elizabeth Kostova’s, The Historian!  

All you have to do to enter is sign up for my newsletter.  Easy, right?  The newsletter is published once a month with updates on my novel and the ins and outs of querying an agent as well as some of my own personal history.

We will also be hosting a free book giveaway each month!  Yay books!  

If you are reading this on a computer the link to the newsletter should be on your left where it says, “Join the Olive Branch”

On tablets and phones you will need to drop the menu down.  

Thank you for all your support and continued readership!