You know what really throws me off? When I’m 150 pages into a book and the author decides to have a character pronounce the name of another character, or has that character pronounce his or her own name.
Like, ma’am, I’ve been saying this name in my head the way it looks or the way I think it would sound, and now you’re telling me I’ve been saying it wrong this entire time? Now I have to retrain my brain with this new pronunciation and it throws off my reading flow!
In this instance I’m speaking specifically to Octavia Butler. She’s my favorite author, but she committed this sin against me and I’m having a difficult time getting over it.
I’m currently re-reading Lilith’s Brood, and I’m well into Adulthood Rites. Lilith gives birth to a little boy named Akin. I read it in my head as “Ay-kin” for a good chunk of the book until he teaches someone else his name and it’s pronounced “Ah-keen”. Now I’m struggling to pronounce his name correctly.
And yes, I did say I’m re-reading this book. However, I don’t tend to store character names, especially the difficult ones Butler comes up with in this book. It’s been several years since my first read through and I did not remember that there was a child named Akin, let alone how to pronounce the name.
Anyway, I just figured I’d share my frustration with you tonight.
Has this ever happened to you while reading? Do you continue pronouncing the name the way you want, or do you pronounce it the way the author intended? Also, what are some of your reading pet peeves? I really want to know!