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LOLITA [Paperback]

VLADIMIR NABOKOV
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (378 customer reviews)

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First Sentence
Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Brilliant "Sinister Memoir"! Sept. 29 2003
Format:Hardcover
"Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta." With those famous opening lines, Nabokov begins a sordid tale told by Humbert Humbert, one of the most fascinating characters in all of American literature. Even many people who have never read this novel know the basic story here since the word "Lolita" has become a part of American culture in that that someone with a "Lolita complex" is attracted to very young girls.
Published in 1955, this novel caused a storm of controversy; it is still provocative today even though there is not a four letter word in it. That is not to say that the book is not extremely erotic in many places. What Nabokov does with words is brilliant. As always he plays constant word games with the reader. Someone goes on a "honeymonsoon" to India. In seaching for Dolores aka Lolita and her run-away suitor, Humbert finds the name "Will Brown, Dolores, Colo." in a hotel register. Humbert and Dolores have breakfast in the "township of Soda, pop. 1001." There are allusions to Poe ("in a kingdom by the sea") and other writers throughout the book. You skim paragraphs at your peril.
The book is wondrously satiric. Nabokov captures the vapidness of the motels in small and middle America in the 40's and 50's with great brilliance. Humbert, with all his perversions, is often a terribly funny character as well. The scene where he wrestles with Quilty comes to mind. "We rolled all over the floor, in each other's arms, like two huge helpless children. He was naked and goatish under his robe, and I felt suffocated as he rolled over me. I rolled over him. We rolled over me. They rolled over him. We rolled over us.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nabavoks disturbing masterpeice June 13 2004
By Kerri
Format:Paperback
This is unarguably a one-of-a-kind book. It's a difficult read, the language and prose is gorgeous, but can get a bit mundane. In a sense, it is a love story...but Humbert does not actually love Lolita herself, but he loves her for the fact that she resembles his lost childhood love. He never gets to know the REAL inside Lolita, he constantly talks about her nubile and pubescent beauty. He speaks of how she tortures him, but she is just a young girl. Humbert morally corrupts the girl to the point where she sleeps with other men and becomes involved with child pornography. This is the kind of book that weeks after finishing it, you continue to cotemplate it. What makes it readable, despite the distrubing concept, is that Nabavok adds humor, but all of the humor is dark and eerie.
It is a wonderful book, but it's definatly not meant to be read by everyone
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The buds of youth. Sept. 21 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A book that, had it been written by somebody else, would have been a lecherous persons kiddy porn handbook. Here, its a masterful telling of a lust story, told by weaving and dodging with keen prose around the subject matter with out ever getting lurid. In fact, several times you wish the author would just get on with it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Authentic Work of Art March 31 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Compels our immediate response and serious reflection-a revealing and indispensable comedy of horrors. Intensely lyrical and wildly funny. The only convincing love story of our century.
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5.0 out of 5 stars AMAZING July 17 2013
By Jessica
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book was a good price, it came promptly in good condition and it was a fantastic read! Would recommend to anyone who enjoys to read!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Lolita: Like it isn't the most apt term to use, April 10 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This isn't an easy book to read, especially the first half: how does a reader identify with what in esse3nce is a child molester? If there can be redemption, however, for such a person, the narrator achieves it, partly due to his savaging himself. At the same time, the book turns from the road trip of a sexual predator into a mystery and the pages turn more quickly. But at all times, Nabakov's use of language is spectacular, pacing the novel on a literary shelf with others that so well display the virtuosity of the English language. For me, the novel is profoundly sad, a soul expander. The recent case of the Canadian professor and former party guru who became persona non grata for suggesting that prison might not be the best way to deal with people who are caught with child pornography on their computer, but not having purchased it or been involved with it in any way, shows that the novel is, unfortunately, very relevant seventy plus years after its publication.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I was bored June 24 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The beginning of the book was interesting, but I was incredibly bored for the remaining three quarters. I'm not sure why this book is so highly rated.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars unbelievable July 13 2004
Format:Paperback
Easily the most amazing book I have ever read. Nabokov's prose is of another world entirely. It would be a blessing if American authors could master the English language with such eloquence. This novel demands an intelligent audience (which is why readers who are closer to the illiterate end of the spectrum have rated this book poorly). If you thought Da Vinci Code was well-written, you do not deserve Nabokov. caveat lector, after having devoured this book, it is quite easy to fall into a state of disillusionment concerning all other available reading material.
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Most recent customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Interesting topic and style but too hyped
I've made it my mission to read a majority of the classic novels that are must-reads and Lolita being #4, I was pleased when I had to read it for a course. Read more
Published on March 26 2011 by Manley H
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Fiction
More than a little disturbing as Nabokov takes us into the mind of a paedophile. Not overly graphic and somewhat romanticized. Definitely part of a good grounding in literature. Read more
Published on March 20 2011 by Diana B.
5.0 out of 5 stars Enigmatic
Lolita. Lolita. Lolita.
Lo-Lee-Ta.

What to say about the story? (I will get to the audio soon). Well...this is one of the best books I've read. Read more
Published on Feb. 8 2010 by Shannan Mann
5.0 out of 5 stars Great work by Nabokov
Lolita is beautifully written. No doubt this is the most controversial novel of the 20th century. Great work by Nabokov.
Published on Aug. 23 2009 by Ilia
1.0 out of 5 stars Borrrrrring....
I am 99 pages into this book and I don't think I can go on. Sentences that never end and big words that no one cares about. Read more
Published on Aug. 4 2009 by A. Mabley
1.0 out of 5 stars Love story?
This is one of those books that generated so much hype around them with no justification what-so-ever. Read more
Published on July 26 2009 by Israel Tzadok
5.0 out of 5 stars Selfishness and stupidity cause more pain than evil can
In the field of erotic literature, this novel has probably touched the awareness of the public more than any other, to such an extent that the once innocuous name of Lolita has... Read more
Published on Oct. 18 2008 by Graham Worthington
5.0 out of 5 stars Unreal
I can't say too much more than what every other five star review has already said. Beautiful prose. One of the best books I've ever read.
Published on Jan. 15 2008 by T. Bigney
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