Friday, June 08, 2007

Hour 4

Hours into the challenge: 4
Hours spent reading/blogging: 4
# pages read:372
# books read: 1 full, 1 partial

The Mates, Dates Guide to Life, Love, and Looking Luscious Cathy Hopkins 241 pages

This is a companion volume to the Mates, Dates... series. You know the stuff they put at the end of each chapter in those books? Well, this is kinda like a compendium of that, but it's not. I mean, it reads like it is, and some of the material is taken from the chapter-end material, but a lot of it is new.

And, there's some great stuff in here. I actually liked this book better than any book in the series and I wish I had it when I was in junior high/ high school. It gives important advice on how to make your first kiss not suck, how flirt, and how to spot a love rat. It also deals with more serious issues such as what to do if you're being bullied and how to tell if you're ready to have sex.

I love the section on homemade face and hair masks for different skin and hair types-- I must try them out. AND! Who knew there was a cure for whisker rash?!

One of my main complaints about the series (besides how a lot of the books came off like a bad after-school special) was the lousy translation job-- they'd just translate words and forget the context. In one book, Nesta makes a pun about public schools. Now in a translation from British to American English, "public school" means "private school". So, they changed the public to private... completely ruining the joke and making the entire page make NO SENSE if you didn't realize that's what had happened. There's not a lot of translation here. I mean check out this sentence:

Boys tend to be more anoraky than girls

Would anyone besides a hard core Anglophile know what "anoraky" means as an adjective? Because that's something I never would have picked up on until I moved there.

But then, once again, the one time they DO translate, they forget context. It say if you're mugged to hand over your personal property and call 911. Now, in the UK, you call 999. So, they translated the phone number, but the illustration still says 999.

But what really gets me is what's left untranslated-- it gives some great hotlines and websites to check out if you're being bullied, but they're all British. Would it have been so hard for the US publisher to add a few pages in back with American resources?

Also, just a note, this was written before the series ended, so keep that in mind, other wise some asides they make don't make ANY sense in the context of the last book, but it makes perfect sense if you realize that the events of the last book haven't happened yet.

Ok, it's after 1. Off to bed and then a group meeting tomorrow and lots more reading! Stay tuned!

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