Monday, October 06, 2014

Early French Pulp Fiction Findings


Here are some tidbits pertaining to early 20th century French pulp fiction in translation. A month or so ago, I found a used copy of a book by Maurice Leblanc entitled DOROTHY THE ROPE DANCER, which I enjoyed very much. I've now discovered that it is the same novel - even the same translation - as another Leblanc translation titled THE SECRET TOMB, a book that was already in my collection at the time I acquired DOROTHY (and not too cheaply). THE SECRET TOMB was the US publication title and DOROTHY THE ROPE DANCER (a precise translation of the novel's original French title) was the UK edition.

Black Coat Press is offering a newly translated Arsene Lupin mystery by Leblanc called THE COUNTESS CAGLIOSTRO, which they claim has never appeared in translation before. In fact, upon receiving the book, I quickly deduced that its first half had been previously translated as THE MEMOIRS OF ARSENE LUPIN - however, the second half, which they call COUNTESS CAGLIOSTRO'S REVENGE, is making its English debut here to the best of my knowledge. The entire book is a fresh and unexpurgated translation by Jean-Marc Lofficier, who is presently occupied in a new translation of Leblanc's classic Arsene Lupin mystery 813, which he tells me has entire chapters missing from its previous English translation by Alexander Teixeira do Mattos.

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