I‘ve watched your videos on YouTube and really enjoyed myself – I like your style, your charming, fresh, delightful and funny presentation. It‘s both greatly amusing and relaxing as well as informative and interesting. I’ll never forget the video in which you explain your opinions on the USA and their current administration as it deeply moved me and showed a side of you rarely seen.
Your book, too, started strong: Indiana Jones of linguistics – I could almost picture you wearing a fedora and whipping the German language; my native language. I feel thoroughly at home in English as well; I’m having a lifelong love affair with it. 😉
Unfortunately, the book becomes annoying pretty early as you start explaining even small things like quotation marks (“Anführungszeichen gewollt”). If you put something in quotation marks that doesn’t need it, your readers will get your meaning. We’re not daft, don’t spell it out.
At times, it looks like you’re forgetting you’re writing a book and not a blog post or something like that and start YELLING AT US. Please don’t do that. It’s like taking a sledgehammer to crack a nut (Mit Kanonen auf Spatzen schießen 😉 ).
Another example of “blogisms” are the overused interjections like this one: “Haha! Scherz! Die versteht doch kein Mensch, oder?” Either something is funny or it’s not. As you write yourself later, chances are high it’s not that funny if you have to explain it. Or, as you put it, “manchmal funktioniert der Witz auch nur für mich”. All to often that’s the case here.
At other times you start lecturing us, e. g. when writing about sentence structure and verb placement. Taking an unfunny longish sentence nobody would ever use doesn’t help either.
Really truly jarring are the factual mistakes, though: Starting with the fact that “Bretzel” is not a word but a simple misspelling of “Brezel” (cf. the Duden as the ultimate authority on German). You don’t have to know that but your translator should have, and your editor, etc.
And don’t listen to Stefan, please, when it comes to German: The genetive might, unfortunately, not be used as it should be but that’s simply part laziness and part ignorance, sorry! It really is “wegen des Regens”, not “wegen dem Regen”. If you want read about this, I strongly recommend Bastian Sick’s “Der Dativ ist dem Genetiv sein Tod” (sic).
By the way, wouldn’t you say “Sehnsucht” translates very well to “longing” or “yearning”?
Anyway, in spite of all of my criticism there is a lot of the 😉 Dana in here; if it’s you accidentally expressing your desire to eat all those animals in the park, or the following poetic passage which evoked images of you in some of your videos:
“[…] ich kann mich daran erinnern, dass mein Herz förmlich dahinschmolz, sich schnell wieder fasste, nur um dann vor Freude zu hüpfen und zu tanzen.”
I’m loving that one. 🙂
In short, Dana, please keep making amazing, funny, touching, beautiful videos. That’s where you shine the brightest.
(Oh, and while I certainly respect you deeply, I wouldn’t hesitate a second to Du’z you! 😉 )