I read a book (in Chinese) by a German author. Its title reads '话说图书'(Talk about Books, or may be roughly translated as On Books) and its author is translated as '奈布罗'(nai-bu-luo). I wonder the original name of the author and the book, but have few clues for the copyright page contains no information about them. What I know is :
- The book deals with many anecdotes about books, for example it talked about how John Heartfield designed the cover of a book by Upton Sinclair and then was suited by an alcohol beverage. Every section begins with a quotation.
- It is mentioned in the book that the author was a reader of Berlin State Library since 1922 and lived in East Germany after WWII. The book seems to be written in late 1960s or early 1970s.
- The book seems to be an indirect translation through a Russian translation, for the translator seemed to specialize in Russian language.
- This is the beginning of the book:
作者的话 (Words from the author)
天哪，千万不要让我写一本谈图书的书。——利希滕贝格 (Gosh, never let me write a book on books. --Lichtenberg)
伏尔泰是很了解人的，他曾请求作者们尽量少谈他们自己，因为读者同作者一样怀有强烈的自尊心。一本书如果想要使人觉得有新意、有用处，或者至少是有趣味，那就应当让这本书自己来说话。 Voltaire knows human well. He onces requested writers to talk less about themselves, for readers, the same as writers, possess a strong sense of self-respect. If (you) want a book to be novel, to be useful to people, or at least to be interesting, (you) should let the book talk itself.