Friday, 19 September 2014
The Housemaid's Daughter in 10!
Plus a couple of large print English versions.
For me, what's fascinating is the variety of covers. In most cases they have been designed to reflect the African heritage of the book - sometimes boldly, sometimes more subtly. But occasionally a publisher has taken a completely different tack, as with the Italian version. And beautiful it is, too. Several translations have paid homage to the music by including watermark musical notes in the background.
But the real difference between the covers lies in the human element: the portrayal of the heroines of The Housemaid's Daughter, Cath and Ada.
Sometimes they are both missing (Chinese and Spanish), sometimes Cath is romanticised (French), sometimes Ada has been made contemporary (Dutch) and sometimes - wonderfully - both have been caught in a moment of joy (Polish).
What do these interpretations say about national traits?
I wouldn't presume to know!
I'm just astonished at the creativity on display.
There are still a few translations to go... so watch this space!