This book gets my vote as what I imagine must have been the most fun translation job of 2010. It’s called Schnittmengen, and is the German version of Jessica Hagy’s English-language book Indexed, based on her blog of the same name.
I’ve been a big fan of Jessica Hagy for a couple of years now, and featured her work on my blog as far back as 2007. So I was pretty excited to see her book translated into German, with a nifty little set of cultural notes for the German reader here.
Some careful sleuthing revealed the translator was Vivian Cullis (*I think*?)… but it’s a shame she doesn’t get a listing on Amazon, or even on the copyright pages of the book itself. So sadly, it’s a boo hiss on that score for the publisher, Goldmann Verlag (Random House).
But that aside: Can you imagine being tasked with this translation job? Cultural references abound, and as the very nature of this work involves comparing random things and finding an unexpected common point, the context wouldn’t offer very many clues to meaning either. Plus, it’s surprising and insightful in itself. Could this be the most fun translation job of 2010?