I found a link to one of my books on a Spanish site. Curious to know what it said, I copied it and popped it into an online translation tool. Laughter ensued. It was the blurb for the book, with a twist. The gist was there, but some of the retranslated words made me giggle. I decided to try copying other blurbs into Spanish and then translate them back to see what I got. Here are the Tales of the Chosen blurbs for your amusement.
First the real one, then the translated and retranslated one.
Superstar Wulf Gabriel must depend on the one man he swore he would never trust again. The most powerful and feared man in the empire – the Harbinger. Lust. Power. Forgiveness. A Chosen loves forever.
Wulf Gabriel longs for freedom. A superstar in the Tarthian Empire, he is bound by an unscrupulous agent to a restrictive contract. With his career threatened and his life at risk, Wulf must trust the one man he swore would never again control him — Luc Saint-Cyr, the Harbinger.
For the Harbinger, saving Wulf is a simple matter of asserting his will. The enigmatic man’s legendary power makes him the most feared person in the empire. To win the heart of Wulf, Luc will have to risk baring his own.
[Apparently Wulf has undergone a sex change in this blurb, because suddenly, he's no longer male. Maybe Luc is too. Not sure. Luc is no longer the Harbinger either. He's the Herald. I think Yoda had a hand in this one.]
Superstar Wulf Gabriel must depend on one man she swore she would never trust again. The most powerful and feared man in the empire – the Herald. Lust. Power. Forgiveness. A Chosen loves forever.
Wulf Gabriel yearns for freedom. A superstar in Tarthian Empire, he is bound by an unscrupulous agent to a restrictive contract. With its threatened and endangered his life career, Wulf must trust the man vowed never control – Luc Saint-Cyr, the Herald.
For Harbinger, saving Wulf is a simple matter to enforce his will. Power legendary enigmatic man he most feared person in the empire does. To win the heart of Wulf, Luc will have to bare her own risk.
The empress asks her trusted spymaster, Alitus, to discover if a friend’s lover is having an affair. The truth could alter age-old alliances and rock the empire to its core. Passion. Submission. Loyalty. A Chosen bares his heart forever.
Alitus lives in a world full of political intrigue, and he is supremely alone. As a Better, an enhanced human, he can touch no one — his pheromones are addictive. He keeps his affair with Wulf secret, because Wulf belongs to another, a powerful man allied with the empress. When the man asks the empress to investigate whether Wulf is having an affair, Wulf’s relationship with Alitus could be exposed. Complicating matters, the empress reveals her immortality, and requires Alitus to prove his loyalty. Her test will throw him straight into Wulf’s arms, right in front of the empress and Wulf’s lover. Hiding what they are to each other has taken discipline and denial. Now, it will take a miracle.
[Alitus is definitely an improved human being, but... Wulf gets another twist in this one -- he's not only Alitus's and Luc's lover, he's also the lover of the Empress. This guy gets around!]
The Empress asks her trusted spymaster, Alitus, to find out if a friend’s lover is having an affair. The truth could alter the secular alliances and rock the Empire to its core. Passion. Submission. Loyalty. A Chosen bares his heart forever.
Alitus live in a world full of political intrigue, and he is supremely alone. Best, a human being improved, no one can touch him – his pheromones are addictive. He keeps his secret romance with Wulf, Wulf that belongs to another man with a powerful ally the Empress. When the man asked the empress to investigate whether Wulf is having an affair, the relationship with Alitus Wulf could be exposed. To complicate matters, the Empress reveals his immortality, and requires Alitus to prove their loyalty. Your test will throw him straight into the arms of Wulf, right in front of the Empress and her lover Wulf. Hide what they are to each other has had the discipline and denial. Now a miracle is needed.
When immortal Luc Saint-Cyr arranges a ménage with Wulf and Jawk, he gets far more than he bargained for. Pleasure. Trust. Possession. A Chosen’s betrayal is forever.
Jawk works at Batchelors, a gay club in the Top Tier district of Tarth City, where he meets Luc. Luc offers Jawk a deal too good to pass up, one night showing him and his lover a good time in exchange for far more than his usual pay. But the sensual Jawk is not what he seems, and one night with him will change the immortal’s alliances forever.
[Trying to figure out how Pleasure becomes Placer (an alluvial deposit that contains particles of some valuable mineral). Don’t get that one. But one thing is the same, the alliances are definitely misaligned in this version. So is the ménage.
When immortal Luc Saint-Cyr is organizing a menage a Wulf and Jawk, you get much more than I expected. Placer. Trust. Possession. The betrayal of a Chosen is forever.
Jawk works at Batchelors, a gay club in the Top Tier district of Tarth City, where he meets Luc. Luc offers Jawk deal too good to pass up, one night he and his lover showing a good time to change much more than his usual salary. But Jawk sensual is not what it seems, and one night he changed alliances with the immortal forever.
No matter how you say it, the truth is, these books are full of conflict, romance, intrigue, and danger. They’re also fun reads and a great romp in the amazing world of the Tarthian Empire. Adding the twist of a different language just makes it more fun. I will still use online translators, but it wouldn’t do to try translating an entire book that way. I can just imagine a love scene with slot A and tab B getting an entirely new “angle.” Hmm. Maybe I’ll translate-retranslate one of those next week…
Have you ever mistranslated something critical and had it backfire? Share it in the comments.