Friday's New York Times Book Review: Amerika

After all these years, Amerika, is being reissued with a new translation after having been sent into the world by Max Brod, and written by Franz Kafka with little notice and few readers.

As a serious Kafka-phile, I've read this book in English, and attempted to read it in German.

I've translated a few scientific tomes (Dutch to English), and for a pittance some Spanish to English for a not very literate newspaper audience (not my language at all) and can certainly appreciate the art of nuance(s). I am curious what changes will occur in a new translation and know too well that a translation, good or bad, can enhance, modify or destroy a writer's words.

German is a particularly nuanced language, and Kafka a surrealist--easy to get lost in language and intention.

But even with its lack of public praise or attention, I remember this book nearly as well as others I read more than 40 years ago.

I'll put the new version on my list of possible reads on an aeroplane.

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