Author(s): Vladimir Nabokov
No. of pages: 361
Genre: Modern Classic, Literature
Publication date: 1955
Date read: July 24th 2018
Humbert Humbert – scholar, aesthete and romantic – has fallen completely and utterly in love with Lolita Haze, his landlady’s gum-snapping, silky skinned twelve-year-old daughter. Reluctantly agreeing to marry Mrs Haze just to be close to Lolita, Humbert suffers greatly in the pursuit of romance; but when Lo herself starts looking for attention elsewhere, he will carry her off on a desperate cross-country misadventure, all in the name of Love. Hilarious, flamboyant, heart-breaking and full of ingenious word play, Lolita is an immaculate, unforgettable masterpiece of obsession, delusion and lust.
This was my fourth time reading this work of art. At least, in my opinion it really is a piece of art: the way it shocks people, but it still so, so very beautifully written, makes it art in my view. Yes, the topic is absolutely awful and horrible to read about, but because of Nabokov’s writing you often forget what exactly you’re reading about.
I’ve studied this novel a lot during my time in uni and I’ve written tons of essays and papers on it. I could still come up with totally new research topics and questions every time I read it. In almost every sentence, references are hidden. References to Nabokov’s own life, to other pieces of literature and just references that make you think, and then think twice. Although this was my fourth time reading this novel, I still noticed that I had moments of “oh this is what this sentence says!”. And most times those double meanings leave me disgusted, because after all, this is a novel about a paedophile and you get to know his every thought. Nevertheless, this book is still my favourite novel and I will be rereading it for a fifth time for sure!
* Trigger warning: childabuse, rape, manipulation *