The OF Blog: One story, many editions

Saturday, July 19, 2008

One story, many editions

Not only do I like to collect a lot of books, in a few rare occasions, I like to acquire as many foreign language editions of a favorite tale as possible. Below are two photos of the eight editions of French author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's most famous tale. I've loved this story for years now and I buy it in languages that I want to someday learn, so...

Top-left: Italian edition, Il Piccolo Principe; Hungarian edition, A Kis Herceg

Bottom-left: French edition (original language), Le Petit Prince; Spanish edition, El Principito

Top-left: Serbian edition, Mali Princ (gift to me); English edition, The Little Prince

Bottom-left: Latin edition, Regulus: Vel Pueri Soli Sapiunt; German edition, Der Kleine Prinz: Mit Zeichnungen des Verfassers

Eventually, I hope to acquire Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Urdu, and Farsi editions, but it'll take some budget planning, since many of these aren't available in the US for less than $50 each.

Any of you have collecting habits like this?


Liviu said...

I usually like to get the English translation of French books I like a lot and read originally in French and sometimes of available Romanian ones again read first in original, but I do not have more than 2 print editions of any book.

Incidentally I have a bilingual (Ro/En) Little Prince but it's my wife's book not mine so to speak, otherwise I would part happily with it since I can't say it's been a favorite. If it were Hector Malot's Sans Famille/Singur pe Lume/Nobody's Boy (have print Ro/Fr, e Fr/En) it would be different since no other children book I love so much - in Romania I had 3 copies, all in pieces from how many times I've read it...

This place in Chicago has very affordable Romanian books and it is reputable since I bought 10+ books from them with no problems. They have listed the dual Little Prince (the one I have) at 15$ - and sh is free over 20, 3 else - but not yet available, so write an email to ask when it's going to be in stock. The quality of the edition is superb.

Larry said...

Ooh! Thanks for the info, Liviu! I'll look into that in a couple of weeks when I have the money to spare!

Jen said...

and if you don't find it there, give me your snail mail address and i'll just send you the book.

Larry said...

OK, I'll do that if my search in the next couple of weeks proves fruitless. Thanks for the kind offer :D

Jen said...

As for the question: I don't exactly collect anything, but I did go through a bit of trouble to get all the Zelazny published in Romania. Which, as impressive as it may sound, isn't: there were only 4 or 5 books until last year, and then I was working at the publishing house that was putting out Amber so there was no problem acquiring the books.

I might try to get all the translated short stories too, but that might be difficult as: 1. there's no list of all of them; 2. most would be in 80s hard to find magazines.

Larry said...

To be honest, I wouldn't be surprised if in the next few years there is a massive collection of his short stories published in the US. All one needs is for someone to make a successful Amber movie and there we go! :P

Jen said...

Successful Amber movie... I wish for that and I am also scared. You know the feeling, "OMG more people are going to hear about my favorite book" but also "what if they screw up the story?".

There are a couple of pretty big short story collections, but the dude wrote a lot of them :P

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