Recommended reading: Roger D. Taylor's translation of "The Adventures of Laforest-Dombourg" by Eric Gautier

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  • 26 Feb 2024 21:50
    Reply # 13321120 on 13320664
    Anonymous wrote:

    First book in French on Ebay




    Good job Jan, thanks a lot!
  • 23 Feb 2024 22:13
    Reply # 13320127 on 13307174
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Bonsoir

    Ces livres étaient édités chez "la découvrance" qui a fait faillite.

    Ceci doit expliquer cela. Rien à voir avec la pucelle !

    Eric

    Courtoisie translation:

    These books were edited by "la decouvrance" and it went on bankrupcy.

  • 23 Feb 2024 10:27
    Reply # 13319741 on 13307174

    There appears to be a volume 1 and a volume 2.
    I suppose they must be read in that order, but my searches on the web for the french original  (!)  version of volume 1 only gives me links for the english translation whatever the search engine.

    Jeanne d'Arc was not enough!  :)

  • 22 Feb 2024 16:48
    Reply # 13319356 on 13307174

    Finished Volume 1 at 3a.m. after a six hour read! Couldn't put it down. 

    The skill and the scope of the original writing by the author and Roger's translation are quite staggering. Highly recommended!

    Only one reference/historical accuracy threw me but I can't find it again now in the 600 pages. At one point (no plot spoilers here) an officer says to another something along the lines of "well you might be happy pottering around the estuaries of Finisterre but I'm going over the horizon"... Now, I got ticked off by a friend from Brest for spelling that part of Brittany "Finisterre" when it is "Finistère" in contemporary French. Was the character in the book referring to pottering around the headland in Spain which is Finisterre, as in the old shipping forecast area (now Fitzroy) or is Finisterre a historically accurate spelling (knowing Roger it probably is!) or a legitimate translation into English? 

    Interestingly, the Breton name for Finistère is Pen-ar-bed, the head of the land, not the end of the land. My friend tells me that for the French it is the end of their territory but for the maritime minded Bretons it is where the land and everything with it begins. 


  • 18 Feb 2024 19:54
    Reply # 13317396 on 13312465
    Rafael wrote:

    In my armchair sailing in the evenings before bed, I have finished volume 1 of this excellent 2-volume novel series, "The Adventures of Laforest-Dombourg" by Eric Gautier and translated by Roger D. Taylor.  I recommend it highly.  

    Good job, Roger!

    I, too, have just finished volume 1.

    I, too, recommend it highly.

    And I, too, congratulate Roger on what have been quite a task, working out how to make a translation that is at the same time in colloquial and easy to read English, yet still historically accurate and conveying enough of a flavour of the original French. 

    ... but I'm very, very glad that I was born 200 years too late to have had to serve on an 18th century naval vessel!   

  • 08 Feb 2024 14:49
    Reply # 13312465 on 13307174
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    In my armchair sailing in the evenings before bed, I have finished volume 1 of this excellent 2-volume novel series, "The Adventures of Laforest-Dombourg" by Eric Gautier and translated by Roger D. Taylor.  I recommend it highly.  I offer a few quick thoughts below for potential readers:  

    1)  This isn't just the French version of those British Napoleonic era sailing novels where the captain swans about the seas capturing prizes afloat and hearts ashore.  This is a finely crafted novel.  Vol. 1 starts off as a murder mystery, adds an intriguing spy story, and finally culminates in more familiar scenes of sailing battles, missing treasure, and his constant sweetheart.  

    2) One learns a lot.  The importance of nobility, honor, and dueling cannot be exaggerated. The author realistically describes the details and challenges of the French Navy in the late 1770s, and its conflicts with the French Army.  

    3)  It's not War and Peace, but the reader needs to pay attention to names in the early chapters or one may later struggle to distinguish the Baron from the Chevalier.  Kudos to Roger for ameliorating this.  In his translator's forward, he notes that he has "in general stuck with a single form of address for each character" (instead of multiple different forms in the French language original), which definitely helps.  Anyway, this is not a big problem. Tip:  There is a list of principal characters at the end of Vol. 1 that I didn't see until I finished.  Before you start reading, earmark that list and refer to it a few times early on to clarify the cast of characters.

    4)  Anyone who has sailed in Brittany will appreciate that much of the action occurs in those waters and inland towns.  Morbihan is mentioned a few times.  Suggestion: someone should produce a map of Brittany indicating principal places from the novel.  

    5) Dueling. Lots of dueling.  

    Good job, Roger!

  • 31 Jan 2024 11:23
    Reply # 13308264 on 13307985
    Anonymous wrote:

    Thanks, Asmat! 

    Roger D. Taylor's books, including the 3 latest described above, are also available in epub format on Kobo.com.

    Not to be confused on that platform with Roger Taylor without the D. 
  • 30 Jan 2024 18:53
    Reply # 13307985 on 13307174
    Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Thanks, Asmat! 

    Roger D. Taylor's books, including the 3 latest described above, are also available in epub format on Kobo.com.

  • 30 Jan 2024 11:39
    Reply # 13307761 on 13307745
    Anonymous wrote

    Thanks for posting that Asmat, and enjoy your tea. I had heard on the grapevine about Roger's tea enterprise. I've drunk tea from the Azores and Grand Canarian coffee which claim to be the most northerly and Atlantic examples, Roger will change that for tea at least!

    Tea is being planted in a field at Tregothnan overlooking the River Fal, Cornwall. 
    Last modified: 30 Jan 2024 11:46 | Anonymous member
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