Sunday, September 11, 2016

Stop Ironing My Head and Other Sayings From Around the World

"You are my orange half" is a romantic saying in Spanish. It means the other is your soul mate.

In Finland "pacing around hot porridge like a cat" paints a word picture; the cat is desperately wanting to get into the porridge and can't just sit and wait so it paces.

"To look at the radishes from underneath" in German is a grim way of talking about being dead.

You can understand what those foreign sayings mean. But what about the Swedish "sliding in on a shrimp sandwich"? What can "to travel as a rabbit" possibly mean in Finnish? Or "to wear a cat on your head" in Japanese? And how can "I will eat your liver" possibly ever be an endearment? In Farsi it is not about the Walking Dead.

The Illustrated Book of Sayings: Curious Expressions from Around the World by Ella Frances Sanders is a follow-up to her best selling Lost in Translation.

Oh! Pregnant horse! (Filipino) This book is a delightful read. 52 sayings are explained and has a full page illustration. Sanders has a wonderful sense of the ridiculous. Even her bio is clever: she is "a writer out of necessity and an illustrator by accident."

Those interested in language or who seek a happy little book to liven, lighten, and enlighten their reading lives will enjoy this contribution.

And so, God bless you and may your mustache grow like brushwood. (Mongolian)

I received a free ebook through NetGalley in exchange for a fair and unbiased review.

The Illustrated Book of Sayings
Ella Frances Sander
Ten Speed Press
publication date September 13, 2016
$14.95 hard cover
ISBN: 9781607749332