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2019.10.19 Half of Translated Books in US from a Mere 9 Languages
632 translated books were published in the US in 2018, the fifth year in a row that this number exceeded 600. Considering the traditionally conservative publishing industry in America, this is a truly revolutionary development. In fact, the total number of books in translation published between 2008 and 2010 was less than 400.

According to the online magazine Quartzy, there are two reasons for this increase in translation publishing. The first is that Americans became more interested in what was happening around the world after the September 11th terrorist attacks of 2001. The second reason is that the success of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo increased demand for translated works.

Half of all translated books in the States are from a mere 9 languages. The top language is French, which has a marked lead over all other languages. Fellow European languages German, Spanish, and Italian follow, but Japanese takes the fifth spot on the list. Looking at translated books in the US ranked by author, Japanese writer Nishio Ishin comes in at number two on the list. He has had an impressive 19 volumes translated and published in the US.

Nishio Ishin writes Light Novels and is also a famous manga writer. The Zaregoto series and Death Note are just some of Nishio’s works that have been translated into English. Though he is certainly popular in Japan as well, Nishio’s work is not mainstream Japanese literature. His popularity in the US is proof that American publishing today is anything but unique watches