James H. Montgomery is a retired university librarian living in Austin, Texas. David Quint is Sterling Professor of Comparative Literature and English, Yale University.
Spending 36 hours in the company of a 400-year-old novel sounds intimidating, but it needn't be-not when the book is as constantly amusing, inventive, and moving as Don Quixote. Cervantes's classic mock-heroic tale chronicles the adventures of a self-styled knight-errant whose efforts to restore medieval chivalry are a series of comic disasters. Considered the first modern novel, Don Quixote is one of the most entertaining stories ever told. Although John Ormsby's English translation is now 125 years old, it seems remarkably fresh. The novel's linear narrative is ideal for listening and combined with Roy McMillan's pitch-perfect narration makes those 36 hours nonstop pleasure for literature fans and general readers. Highly recommended.-R. Kent Rasmussen, Thousand Oaks, CA (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
There would seem to be little reason for yet another translation of Don Quixote. Translated into English some 20 times since the novel appeared in two parts in 1605 and 1615, and at least five times in the last half-century, it is currently available in multiple editions (the most recent is the 1999 Norton Critical Edition translated by Burton Raffel). Yet Grossman bravely attempts a fresh rendition of the adventures of the intrepid knight Don Quixote and his humble squire Sancho Panza. As the respected translator of many of Latin America's finest writers (among them Gabriel Garc!a M rquez, Carlos Fuentes and Mario Vargas Llosa), she is well suited to the task, and her translation is admirably readable and consistent while managing to retain the vigor, sly humor and colloquial playfulness of the Spanish. Erring on the side of the literal, she isn't afraid to turn out clunky sentences; what she loses in smoothness and elegance she gains in vitality. The text is free of archaisms the contemporary reader will rarely stumble over a word and the footnotes (though rather erratically supplied) are generally helpful. Her version easily bests Raffel's ambitious but eccentric and uneven effort, and though it may not immediately supplant standard translations by J.M. Cohen, Samuel Putnam and Walter Starkie, it should give them a run for their money. Against the odds, Grossman has given us an honest, robust and freshly revelatory Quixote for our times. (Nov.) Forecast: A somber, graceless jacket won't do this edition any favors, but the packaging of the paperback will be most important in determining future sales. In any case, this will be an essential backlist title. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Gr 9-12-Using model animation and sound effects, the video presents Cervantes' great satire. Don Quixote reads so many books on chivalry that he fancies himself as a knight, or worthy of being one. Accompanied by his sidekick, Sancho Panza, he has a series of adventures until finally, on his deathbed, he renounces knighthood saying "I was mad but now am saved." Several adventures were omitted or shortened in this 30-minute version. Yet the points of emphasis, such as Don's attacking a score of windmills he believed to be monstrous giants, will carry the book's message. The use of models further exaggerate the humor. The British accent of actor Simon Callow contrasts with the voice of the sidekick. The video would be useful in world literature classes at the secondary level. Teachers should show the video before having students read the book, discuss the satire presented, and challenge students to find other examples in the story.-Kathy Akey, Clintonville Senior High School, WI Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
James Montgomery's new translation of Don Quixote is the fourth
already in the twenty-first century, and it stands with the best of
them. It pays particular attention to what may be the hardest
aspect of Cervantes's novel to render into English: the humorous
passages, particularly those that feature a comic and original use
of language. Cervantes would be proud. --Howard Mancing, Professor
of Spanish, Purdue University and Vice President, Cervantes Society
I find Montgomery's Don Quixote lively, beautiful, and compelling. While previous translations have tended to use archaisms and sound overly proper, Montgomery finds a nice balance between old and new language. I quickly fell into the flow of the story and forgot that I was reading a translation. --David Lee Garrison, Professor of Spanish, Wright State University
David Quint's Introduction is remarkably comprehensive. It is full of imaginative critical insights and indispensable information, and it is concise and elegant. It furnishes all the fundamental historical, biographical, social, and literary backgrounds. I know of no other work of this type that can match it in comprehensiveness, sophistication, critical insight, and 'up-to-dateness.' --Alban Forcione, Professor of Spanish Emeritus, Princeton University and Columbia University
"The passion with which Montgomery has translated Don Quixote shines through in a translation that is faithful to the language, style, and spirit of the original. The overall quality of Montgomery' translation is excellent; I often found myself engrossed in the novel as if the original language were English, and only when I stopped reading did I realize that I was still reading a translation. I recommend it highly. Quint' fine Introduction provides the reader with a comprehensive literary and historical orientation to the novel that specialists and non-specialists alike will appreciate." --Michael J. McGrath in Cervantes: Bulletin of the Cervantes Society of America