16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Is That a Fish in Your Ear?: Translation and the Meaning of Everything (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Make no bones about it, this is a wordy book. It is not one of these ghost written, large font & low content publications that promise much on the cover and let you down within the first few pages. David Bellos is a translator, a word smith, an alchemist who changes one language to another with the fluidity of a salmon swimming upstream. He details the histories and differences between languages, explains the way they converge and stand apart and what goes into and is left from translation.
The book is liberally interspersed with anecdotes and humorous examples of words apart from their native tongue, which can be a minefield when trying to preserve the tone & intent of the original language.
I understand some people will not get the book (even I found some parts hard going), but as a history of intercultural communication it is an invaluable read.