Re: RARA-AVIS: RE : Lolita and noir

From: bobav1 ( rav7@COLUMBIA.EDU)
Date: 06 Feb 2007

Hi Patrick:

Coming out of lurkdom to point you to

for Lolita's opening. If you don't see the humor in "(picnic, lightning)", "and some interesting reactions on the part of my organism to certain photographs, pearl and umbra, with infinitely soft partings . . . " . . . actually, I was going to quote more, but I find humor all over Humbert's voice. Do you, a member of this listserv and a reader of hardboiled fiction, not find something funny about a sentence like: "You can always count on a murderer for a fancy prose style"?

So much to say about Nabokov (and professors and grad students have made careers saying it), but humorless he ain't.

Bob V in NYC

PS: Pale Fire is my favorite, the most extraordinarily constructed novel (I think it's a novel?!?) I've ever read. Even the index has jokes and puzzles.

PPS: I wouldn't consider it noir or hardboiled either, despite some notable elements.

--- In, Patrick King <abrasax93@...> wrote:
> Could you possibly quote some of the especially
> hillarious passages you recall so I can understand at
> least what you mean? I remember the Catcher In The Rye
> chapter in church in which a former student was
> speaking about the fine education he'd received and
> Holden was commenting on the side as causing
> unrestrainable laughter. I never had that sort of
> experience with Lolita.
> Patrick King

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