An important part of translation is not only to change the language but to maintain the mood and keep the integrity of the story. Most of all, it must be readable in the new language.
When my book 'Clan' was translated into German I was lucky to have a great translator who I needed to trust and rely on with my baby!
The following is just a bit of fun - but makes the point.
I took the first few lines of the book (detailed below) and used Google Translate to translate them into German.
I then copied the German and pasted it back into Google Translate and asked it to translate the German back into English.
Quite Interesting as Stephen Fry might say.
"It was half scream and half roar.
Seconds earlier, the Great Hall, with its blazing wooden wall torches and man-high open log fires, was echoing with the clamour of dozens of warriors, some lounging at long trestle tables picking at huge platters of cooked meats consisting of whole roasted suckling pigs and poultry and massive sides of beef, as well as piles of coarse bread, fruits and large jugs of rough wine and ale."
GOOGLE GERMAN TRANSLATION
"Es war halb und halb Schrei brüllen .
Sekunden zuvor hatte der Great Hall, mit seinem lodernden Holzwand Fackeln und mannshohe offene Kamine , wurde mit dem Lärm von Dutzenden von Krieger Echo , einige Faulenzen am langen Holztischen Kommissionierung auf riesigen Platten mit Wurst , bestehend aus ganzen gerösteten Spanferkel und Geflügel und massive Rinderhälften , sowie Haufen von groben Brot, Obst und große Krüge mit Wein und Bier rau ."
GOOGLE GERMAN TO ENGLISH RE-TRANSLATION
"It was half and half roar scream.
Seconds earlier, the Great Hall , with its blazing wood wall torches and head-high chimneys, was , with the noise of dozens of warriors echo , some lounging on the long wooden tables picking on huge plates with sausage, made from whole roasted suckling pig and poultry and massive cattle halves and piles of coarse bread , fruit and large jugs of wine and beer rough."