My track record with reading in Spanish has always been up and down. I tend to get very sidetracked by every word that I don’t understand, every idiom I can’t quite parse. But looking up twenty words per page is practically a death knell to reading comprehension if you’re reading novels. You have to go and keep going, and get the gist of what you can. Also frustrating is the sheer slowness of reading in another language. Compared to my usual reading speed, it’s glacial, and it can be disheartening.
One thing I’ve found very helpful is to read books I’ve already read. As far as novels go, I’ve made a few attempts at The Sorcerer’s Stone and City of the Beasts in Spanish, only to inevitably stop reading every day because I’m going at such a slow pace. But this year I’m really trying not to fall into that trap. I’m reading Bless Me, Ultima in Spanish, which is both a book I have read previously and a rather more advanced novel than the last two. Surprisingly, it’s the best try I’ve had yet. I was reading a chapter a day before I got off track, but I’m determined to finish it by the end of July.
When I actually get through a chapter and discover I understand what occurred in it, if not every single word, it’s an amazing feeling. One that I want to keep pursuing. After I finish Bless Me, Ultima, I’ll go back to City of the Beasts.
I picked this book up from a street vendor in Quito–it’s not a translation of an English novel, so it should be both a challenge and a really valuable read.
If things go according to plan, this should be my last scheduled blog post, so look forward to a more contemporary post next week!
This has been a scheduled post, as I am currently without reliable WiFi in the Ecuadorian Amazon! Returning in a month!