I did it! And now there are only two items left on my list, both of which will end/happen on my birthday! I bought this book when I was still taking Spanish classes regularly and was like oh what a great way to test myself. (I think I have a copy of Roald Dahl’s Matilda floating around in Spanish too somewhere.) And I’ve finally read it.
I’ve tried multiple times in the past to read it and gave up within the first few chapters and I almost did this time too. I started it back in August read two chapters and promptly stopped again. I was trying to look up every single word I didn’t know or recognize and took me a couple of hours for the first chapter (less than 15 pages) and I got super discouraged. So I let the book sit on my bedside table for almost four months and when I got to the final five items on my list I knew I needed to seriously get to it, especially as I’d completed my re-read of the Lord of the Rings.
This time when I picked it up (we were on our way to DC for my surprise 30th birthday trip) I didn’t take a dictionary and I didn’t allow myself to use my phone except to check words that I didn’t know at all and that I found to be really interesting. It worked SOOOO much better. I would say I understood roughly 50% of it because I knew the story so well, 40% of it because my Spanish was good enough to sort it out and I had to look up maybe 15% and 5% I just didn’t worry about. A few times I went back and re-read a few paragraphs or pages because I remembered something happening in either the film or book that should’ve happened and I didn’t remember reading it. Usually it had to do with my mistranslation one word and as soon as I caught it things clicked back into place.
I guess it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was, because as I neared the end of the story I started to look into the other novels in Spanish, however those I’m concerned about. I’ve written (and read) about it before that the major language translations (Spanish, French, Chinese) were poorly done and I know the spanish language novels had a huge shift after the first one because they’re written with the Spain Spanish and not Latin American Spanish, but two of my years of Spanish classes were with teachers from Spain so who knows. I’ll never really understand all of the idiomatic expressions regardless of the dialect unless I move to one of the countries!
Fun fact, in addition to this Spanish translation I do own multiple sets of Harry Potter in American English and the original British English publications AND I have the first two books in French! I’m hoping to pick up a Welsh and Irish copy of the first novel (they didn’t release the others I think) but mostly they’re just fun to look at and I want to stumble across them in a used bookstore.