Re: RARA-AVIS: RE : Lolita and noir

From: Richard Moore (
Date: 06 Feb 2007

Thanks for the link to the opening of Lolita. It's time to reread-- which means buying another copy as I'll never locate the box my original is in.

I briefly complimented his Pale Fire in an earlier post but I completely agree with your comments. It is a more challenging book for a reader than Lolita, which smoothed the way with a lascivious plot and (to some at least) more overt humor, yet it may be a more brilliant piece of writing.

Richard Moore

--- In, "bobav1" <rav7@...> wrote:
> 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
> partings . . . " . . . actually, I was going to quote more, but I
> humor all over Humbert's voice. Do you, a member of this listserv
> a reader of hardboiled fiction, not find something funny about a
> sentence like: "You can always count on a murderer for a fancy
> 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@>
> >
> > 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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