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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Brilliant "Sinister Memoir"!
"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...
Published on Sept. 29 2003 by H. F. Corbin

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I was bored
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.
Published 12 months ago by not a fan


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Brilliant "Sinister Memoir"!, Sept. 29 2003
By 
H. F. Corbin "Foster Corbin" (ATLANTA, GA USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lolita (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."
We cannot forget, however, that Humbert is ultimately guilty of an ugly sin. In his own words he has deprived a "girl-child" of her childhood. In their cross-country journey, she cries every night. The picture is not pretty.
In an essay written in 1956 Nabokov writes about writing LOLITA. HE says that he is "neither a reader nor a writer of didactic fiction, and. . .. LOLITA has no moral in tow." He further denies the charge made by some readers that the novel is anti-American. Finally he says there are three subjects "utterly taboo as far as most American publishers are concerned." Obviously the theme of this novel is one. The other two, in Nabokov's words, are: "a Negro-White marriage which is a complete and glorious success resulting in lots of children and grandchildren; and the total atheist who lives a happy and useful life, and dies in his sleep at the age of 106." A most interesting observation. I wonder just how much has changed in 47 years.
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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 (Philadelphia, PA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Lolita (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
By 
Andy Vogt (Libau,Manitoba,Canada.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lolita (Paperback)
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
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This review is from: Lolita (Hardcover)
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 story, June 11 2014
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This review is from: Lolita (Paperback)
I truly thought this story was true when I first read it, I was a little disappointed when I realized it was not, however it was still an engaging story. You really see inside the man's head and understand the confusing feelings he has for "Lolita". This is one of my favourite books.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Nabokov's Literary Spectacle, May 30 2014
This review is from: Lolita (Paperback)
This novel is many things. It is wonderfully beautiful, it is beautifully entrancing, it is entrancingly seductive, it is seductively horrific, it is horrifically sublime. 'Lolita' is about a middle-aged pedophile named Humbert Humbert who falls in love with a twelve-year old girl named Dolores Haze - the Lolita in the title. The story is his confession to the murder of another character at the end of the novel, and focuses primarily on his seduction of Lolita which led to this homicide.

Humbert is skilled with words. He (Nabokov included) uses language to distort a reader's perception of his account. What is most difficult about this psychopath--for that, without question, is what Humbert is--is his self-awareness, accepting that he should be charged and imprisoned for the rape and desiccation of a young girl. It left me questioning how I should classify him. This novel is a psychological profile, and the pedophile is a type that I think most people have a difficult time understanding (I know I do, like most). He is definitely aware and even ashamed of his transgressions, which leads to one of the heart-wrenchingly disturbing qualities of 'Lolita': we sympathize with Humbert.

We are complicit in his crime. But ultimately, readers should read past the beautiful words in the book and see the story for what it is: a misguided love story of a man who never got over his first love.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, Horrible, April 23 2014
By 
Troy Parfitt "Why China Will Never Rule the W... (Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lolita (Paperback)
Well, it’s a classic, much discussed, much admired, but I’ll add my two pennies. Wonderful writing; stellar stylistically, each paragraph a work of art. Is this really Nabokov’s second language? you wonder, and he throws in a lot of saucy French just for fun, taking the prose to ever new heights. In terms of style, Lolita is off the charts. The prose is poetic – fluid and original. Page after page, wow, wow, wow. Martin Amis doesn’t list Vladimir Nabokov as a top influence, but Lolita reads like an Amis novel, with less gallow’s humour and more fluidity. The story itself, however, is pretty bloody twisted. The protagonist, Humbert Humbert, is a child molester. I like novels with anti-heroes, ones where you find yourself cheering on or empathising with an ethically bereft protagonist even though you know you shouldn’t. But HH is a whole other type of anti-hero. He’s an enlightened, refined, and eloquent pedophile, and as impressive as his French his, he’s a criminal and admits he should be given 35 years for rape. Lolita’s nightly sobbing is eminently disturbing.

And not much happens in the novel. After Humbert Humbert attains his prize, the novel becomes fictional travel literature (better than most real travel literature!) before switching back to drama (guy loses girl is replaced by child abuser loses victim). There’s a decent ending, but a bit of a cliché one (as Nabokov practically admits), and that’s it – plus a word from the author explaining how everything you’ve probably thought about the novel is meritless; he didn’t mean it like that. He bedevils in the telling, and then bedevils in the explanation. Nabokov plays with you, and you let him because he’s such a good writer, but you cringe, or should, at his honeyed poetry’s horror.

Troy Parfitt is the author of Why China Will Never Rule the World
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5.0 out of 5 stars AMAZING, July 17 2013
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This review is from: Lolita (Paperback)
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
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This review is from: Lolita (Kindle Edition)
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
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This review is from: Lolita (Paperback)
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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Lolita
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov (Paperback - March 13 1989)
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