- Paperback: 308 pages
- Publisher: New Directions; 60148th edition (September 17, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0811216748
- ISBN-13: 978-0811216746
- Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.9 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 73 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #907,574 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Laughter in the Dark 60148th Edition
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“Nabokov writes prose the only way it should be written―that is, ecstatically.”
- John Updike
About the Author
Vladimir Nabokov (1899-1977), one of the 20th century's greatest writers in both Russian and English, was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, and spent his adult life in Germany, France, the United States, and Switzerland. In addition to his literary work, he was a passionate lepidopterist and chess player. His books include Lolita, Pale Fire, The Real Light of Sebastian Knight, Laughter in the Dark, and many more.
Top customer reviews
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Margot is immediately a classic Nabokov character. She is not brilliant like Ada, or slightly evil like Lolita but shares the same type of character defect as Lolita in that they both use people as objects and therefore have moral issues.
I enjoyed the playfulness of Margot and the way she remained very secretive. Nabokov was brilliantly vague on her character development. He basically leaves her role as commented on by the main character-Albinus--(another classic name similar to Cincinatius from invitation to a beheading), reducing her inner dialogue to feelings about Rex. There are mainly just 3 characters in a sort of melodrama play but there are a few other main characters, mainly Albinu's family.
Margot therefore remains mysterious while the 2 other males living wit her are developed in a more in depth manner.
I agree with several of the reviews that this is his most accessible book, or rather it is written in a very traditional way without any anagrams or tons of french phrases. I feel the style works perfect here because it gives it the right kind of feel to the structure of the novel.
This is the 8th Nabokov book i have read so i feel by this point i can relate it to his other works and safely say this one seems to be the most traditionally written.
I do not see this as being any more light in the sense of comedy than any of his others. I actually laughed out loud more reading Bend Sinister. I feel Nabokov is a master of injecting wonderful poetic moments that can unexpectedly be moving enough to draw tears.
The part about Albiniu's family echo's Bend Sinister in that it show Nabokov to be a family man at heart and believe in the family unit. I feel; Bend Sinister was about the change that happens internal to a family when your socioeconomic environment changes rapidly or in a chaotic way. A theme similar to that deals with Albiniu's family and the dramatic elements remind me of William Thackery's style.
I feel this is just as dark as most of his works but has a big heart as well. The first time i noticed Nabokov was actually a very compassionate artist was when reading King Queen Knave. Just the scenes where the main characters pass time together reminds me of nemonic ways to bring up cherished memories of my past life. Nobokov is an important artist.
But it still lacks those quintisential Nobokovicals that set him apart. His dazzling wordplay and refined literary technique, a smooth overlay of irony and his reeling plots that leave me somewhere between delighted and confused.
Nabokov is like whiskey, the best stuff is great. The cheap stuff will get the job done anyway. I really enjoyed this novel despite those critics. Nabokov is still the funniest guy in literature, and every page turned is a new joke to learn. The center gets heavy, one character gets a new direction while the other loses a direction. Its the emotional backbone of the novel and very well done.
Would reccomend to those interested in learning who Nabokov is when noone is looking.
So begins Laughter in the Dark, Vladimir Nabokov's sixth novel published in Berlin in 1933. The brilliance of it is that Nabokov tells you what is going to happen in such a way that he still makes you want to read about it. The only other person who carried off the same trick with similar panache is Gabriel Garcia Marquez in his Chronicle of a History Foretold.
Laughter in the Dark is a brilliantly wicked piece set in the movie world of Berlin during the early 1930s. I won't reveal the plot, but suffice it to say that if you've enjoyed Lolita, you should enjoy this novel, which has some interesting parallels. Five stars.
I enjoyed the book enormously even though in the middle I had a break because I knew that heartbreak was coming
Most recent customer reviews
Actually, no need for a spoilers alert since Nabokov proceeds to tell us the entire plot in the first paragraph.Read more