Would you buy books in another language than your own?



  • I'm curious, if you would buy books (novels, manga, etc.) also in other languages, or are you more comfortable with buying and reading books in your mother language?


  • Premium Member

    @labellearabesque Yes I would if it's in the original language, electronic format, and no DRM. Reason for those restrictions is that I would like to use MTL on portions that I consider the official translation to be questionable. I know that MTL has some rather severe restrictions about context and such. But manual translations also have ... issues. In order to perform a good manual translation, the translator needs three things. Those being

    1. Proficiency in the source language.
    2. Proficiency in the destination language.
    3. Sufficient knowledge of the material in the source language to actually understand in detail what the author describes.

    And I'm sad to say that for point number 3 above, all too many translators fall shy of the goal and hence the official manual translations fall short of where they should be.


  • Premium Member

    Yes, that what I'm doing with JNC, in fact nowdays I'm reading most books in English rather than in French.


  • Premium Member

    I would prefer books in British English but am willing to read them in American English.


  • Member

    @shiny said in Would you buy books in another language than your own?:

    I would prefer books in British English but am willing to read them in American English.

    I've been always curious about that. When a book is translated from non-English to English, how often do they get translated to British English? Or in reverse, how common is it for British written book to be "translated" to American English? Does it have to be hugely popular like Harry Potter?

    EDIT

    Of course there is 3rd question that how often American written book gets "translated" to British English?



  • I haven't read a book in my mother language for like 4 or 5 years now. Partially because my English is worse than my Russian so I don't get triggered at translator's decisions every paragraph. Still, I'm actually buying Spice&Wolf that's being published locally RN but I'm not in the mood to read it.


  • Member

    I'm already doing it. If we are talking about LNs, mainly because there is more to choose from in english.
    But also because what AlexUsman said. Also, I'm not a fan of official JP-RU transliteration rules.


  • Staff

    I have a bunch of manga in French because they aren't available legally in English, or in Chihayafuru's case, not in print. I'm most comfortable buying English books, but I do what I need to :P



  • I read MORE in other languages than my own. JNC being one of them.

    For starters, there's a very limited market for LNs in Spanish, even specialty stores in my country get manga at best, you'd be hard pressed to find LNs. And they don't get digital editions either so I'd have to import them from Argentina or Spain, which for some reason both end up costing a lot more than importing stuff in English from USA. So yeah, I've even imported some stuff in English but you'd never find anything by IVREA or Norma (publishers in Spanish that carry LNs) in my room.

    And for regular novels, for a long time I've preferred picking it up in English. Most of the time if I'm reading something in Spanish is because that's the original language, someone lent me a book or I found it for a damned good price / nice collector's edition, but it wouldn't be my first choice for the last one.


  • Premium Member

    If it was something that I felt like I could make a passable attempt at reading and wasn't in English, then possibly. Though that would only be French in my case.


  • Member

    I cant find legal manga , light novel etc in turkish. So english is my only hope for read something i interested. However , for thick serious books , i prefer reading in turkish. Even i can understand and able to read in english , its still hard for me to read major books.


  • Premium Member

    Seeing as I am already reading here I have no problems with books in other languages. I even prefer books in english instead of german. Usually I read english, german, spanish and dutch books. Also in this order.


  • Premium Member

    Personally, I think it’s a great way to practice with a language you intend to learn. Not that I’m good with anything beyond English and Spanish, mind. But it’s also interesting just to have them.


  • Premium Member

    I bought Japanese books in addition to my English native books. That's as far as I'll go.

    I have actual interest in learning bits and pieces of the language and don't mind doing MTL to have knowledge enough to know what the general plot of a series is to recommend it (otherwise, you're at the mercy of fan sites and the occasional English news / review source of Japanese works).


  • Premium Member

    @labellearabesque When I was a kid, I used to buy the Japanese Sailor Moon mangas. I could figure things out for the most part by looking at the drawings and I was ok with not knowing everything that was said.

    Right now, I’m not 100% opposed to buying a book in another language, but only if it was something like an art book, where there isn’t much to read anyways. I only know English and I prefer to be able to read the dialogue.


  • Premium Member

    I'm an outlier (I guess)
    I can only read/write in English with any fluency but I would buy a book in another language if:

    • The art was outstanding, and I enjoyed it just for the artwork
    • it was signed by the author
    • it was a souvenir (of a convention/trip/ whatever)

    of course 2 of the above apply to physical/paper books and not digital - I'd buy digital if it was to support an author or cause (humble bundle) - or if I wanted the art for my desktop/phone or whatever (at the rights allowed that use)



  • Yes, I would. Besides books written in french (my mother tongue), I’m often buying english and german books. I even started buying chinese books, although I’m still having difficulties reading them.


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