November 11th, 2012

... and the Bookman

Tempora mutantur

Аннотация к американскому изданию "Понедельника..." Стругацких (1977, DAW Books):

It is well known that the Soviets have been working secretly on the problems of psi powers, ESP, and so-called witchcraft practices. Now here is a novel, a bestseller on the other side of the Curtain, written by two Soviet scientists – who are also Russia's best science fiction writers – about the top secret, well-guarded institute in Solovetz where the most intensive research is done to harness the power of black magic, wizardry, and the secrets of super-science and paranormal talents! But this is no heavy tome or dark drama of mad science! No, indeed! it is a totally delightful account of the wild results of outlandish experiments, of a scientist lured into joining the staff of this incredible institute where 'Monday begins on Saturday' and what befell him there! Here is the account of the time-travelling mattress, of the man who was two men, of the talking cat, of the golem factory, of the unspendable coin, and of wonders that will stagger the imagination. How much of this can be true? How much of this is fantasy? Who knows – read it for yourself – and make up your own mind. In any case, it's a literary romp! DAW dares to bring you the Strugatskis' most famous novel in a strictly unauthorized translation!

Аннотация к английскому изданию 2005 года:

Arkady and Boris Strugatsky are by far the most famous Russian writers of science fiction. Their work influenced several generations of young Russians, opening up new horizons of intellectual freedom, combined with endless fun. 'Monday Starts on Saturday', the Russian equivalent of 'Harry Potter', was written 40 years earlier, and the whole business of dealing with magic happens in a scientific research facility rather than in the school. The main characters are young adults rather than school kids, but that doesn't make it any less funny!

Магия империи зла versus русский "Гарри Поттер" - а, в общем-то, разницы никакой (разве что новый перевод может быть пристойнее, потому что старый никуда не годился).