Friday, 25 March 2011


The title of this blog reads (according to Misha at the Renegade Writers group) 'The Polish Connection' but if I've misconstrued it and I've insulted everyone in Poland, I apologise.

I must admit to have had a certain trepidation about the reaction to the book in Poland. The Warsaw Uprising that I use as the basis of the middle part of 'The Demi-Monde: Winter' was a terrible event and what was done to the Jews and to Warsaw itself almost defies belief. I suspect it's still pretty raw subject with Varsovians even sixty-odd years on, so I was unsure of the reception my re-imagining would get. Then there was how the translator would handle my use of puns in words such as LessBiens and the like. I was also worried about what they would make of Burlesque's patois.

It seems I needn't have worried on either score and certainly the translator made a much better fist of things than Google ever could.

Miscontruing from Polish into English is the subject of this blog. The first instalment of the Demi-Monde saga was released in Poland in February as 'Demi-Monde: Zima' and there's been quite a lot of internet traffic about it. The problem is that most of this traffic has been - understandably - in Polish and whilst Nelli can help me with the occasional word for the most part I've had to rely on Google to translate. Which I have to report is unbelievably FRUSTRATING!

Let's start with Lena173who writes on She says 'The  Demi-Mnde is a novel which has strengthened my conviction that it is worth reaching for what is unknown'. So far so good. But she ends - courtesy of Google - with the paragraph: 'I look forward to another volume of this series and yet it remains for me nothing else but shoot the next victim of the fantasy genre. I highly recommend!' The last three words I can applaud but the rest ...

Next up is Sheila who reviews (I think) for the Fantasta site. This is the sentance I really love: 'Especially since niesztampowe really surprising ending make that I can not wait for the next volume'. But the great thing is that Shiela really liked it.

Fenrir reviewing on Lubimy Czytac said, 'Here, the story (of the Warsaw Uprising) played out again, with a completely different ending, which surprised me mercilessly.' Well, that sounds Okay, especially as Fenrir goes on to say, 'I rarely get such interesting titles, an Demi-Monde, wandered on the shelf reserved for your favourite items'.

It's early days but the reaction so far in Poland seems very positive. Phew!

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