Friday, June 1, 2007

Nabokov is making me into a pervert.

Halfway through Lolita.

I love it.

Nabokov's writing is lyrical, intelligent, coherent - although obsessive, it is also collected, thus depicting Humbert Humbert as someone, although objectively lecherous, completely sympathetic. I find some of the passages simultaneously disturbing yet erotic. Does that make me a pervert, or does that make Nabokov a great writer? As in, for a second, when Humbert is going on and on, I almost believe in him, until I pull myself out of his world and think about it, and realize what exactly he's talking about, and how objectively, it is utterly reprehensible and perverse. Even as he is having insane, awful, mean thoughts, I am drawn into his obsession and logic.

And I've been noticing the way his sections are broken, the unconventional, the interjections, the asides. I like that, I really like when something isn't straight-up linear and organized and yet it still works. Partially because I'd like to be able to get away with something like that one day.

Yes. Very good. This book has so far not been a let down whatsoever. All the hype is well-founded.

6 drops:

Book Worm said...

"I find some of the passages simultaneously disturbing yet erotic. Does that make me a pervert, or does that make Nabokov a great writer?"

Very well put.

In a much less intelligent way, I tried saying the same thing here.

http://shrinkster.com/pkw

C. Dappen said...

I loved this book.

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hazelgrouse said...

Angelle, is this your first Nabokov?

angelle said...

That it is, though, after reading this, it will not be my last. Do you have a recommendation for a second?

hazelgrouse said...

That's a toughy...for balence, I'd say read "Bend Sinister" because it is full of Nabokovian wit and humor, but also has elements of fantasy and the metaphysical...or try "Pnin"...save "Pale Fire" and "Ada" for a bit later (my two favorites, but very heavy) With many of his books, you have to read them twice because you will notice something the second time that you didn't the first...this is why I've been reading Nab with a fine tooth comb for like the past 6 years

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