- Paperback: 317 pages
- Publisher: Vintage Books / Random House; 2nd edition (1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0679723161
- ASIN: B002G4W6PU
- Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.2 x 0.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1,203 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,590,620 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Lolita Paperback – 1997
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Top Customer Reviews
The narrator, Humbert Humbert, is a fascinating construction. As readers, we find ourselves simultaneously repelled by his actions and sympathetic to his yearning. We are utterly charmed by his wit, intelligence and verbal acrobatics, sometimes to the point where we lost sight of what he's doing to his object of desire, Lolita.
I would suggest that all readers reaquaint themselves with the concept of the "unreliable narrator" before they sink into Humbert's hypnotic web of logic. When you find yourself sympathizing with Hum about Lolita's "cruelties", try to remember that you are seeing everything through his twisted and self-serving lens. Humbert has rationalized his behavior so deeply and reports it to us so entertainingly, that we find ourselves accepting his interpretations of people and events at face value. However, we must remember that Hum is capable of the most monsterous of deceptions (note how long it takes him to inform Lolita of her mother's demise), and of self deceptions. Read between the lines. Question his reading of events. Pay attention when his reporting is at odds with his interpretations of them.Read more ›
The story is infamous. Humbert Humbert is of European origin and in his early teenage years developed a passionate attachment to a girl of his own age, an attachment that was never entirely satisfied and over which he has obsessed for many years. Now residing in a small New England town, he becomes equally obsessed with a twelve year old girl named Lolita Haze who recreates for him the magic he felt in that first relationship. In order to be near her, Humbert rents a room from and ultimately marries Lolita's mother Charlotte--but Charlotte uncovers Humbert's motives and in a twist of fate is killed in the street as she runs from the house to expose him. The circumstance places Lolita entirely in Humbert's power. They travel extensively, partly in order that he might continue his molestation undetected, partly in order that he might prevent Lolita from forming other relationships that might offer a means of escape. But Lolita is not a simple victim, and in spite of her years already has a certain sexual expertese.Read more ›
The story is narrated by middle-aged Humbert Humbert. He's a pedophile--although he's tried denying it, tried disguising it, and tried channeling his baser instincts, but as luck would have it, Humbert finds himself as the lodger at the home of a buxom, lonely widow, Charlotte Haze and 12-year-old daughter, Lolita. Humbert doesn't particularly even like Lolita--he actually finds her rather dull, but she becomes a vessel for the fantasies left by Humbert's unfulfilled first love affair.
Due to the subject matter, the book was, at times, rather difficult to read, and it is a tribute to Nabokov's skill as a writer that I was gripped by this story. Humbert Humbert is at his most 'human' (introspective) during his pre- and post-Lolita phases. Once Humbert crosses the boundaries of ethical behaviour and begins a physical relationship with Lolita, there is no going back. At times, Humbert congratulates himself for his cleverness and calls himself a "magician," and then at other times, Humbert seems to realize how despicable he truly is. Unfortunately, the occasional flash of insight is too pale and fleeting to release Humbert from his obsession with his "nymphet" and so Humbert accepts his enslavement and ultimate fate.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is a must read for people who like being in the minds of the mentally-different. I loved getting to know the characters and it raised so many questions in my own self and... Read morePublished 3 days ago by Bom Park
about the time you feel sorry for Lolita, she kicks him in the face with her bobby socks one more timePublished 6 days ago by marcia shaw
As Lolita is a much-discussed book, this review is not a review of the contents of the book itself (for I don't believe I have anything novel to include on the topic). Read morePublished 9 days ago by Danielle Labotka
Another classic, but this one I’ve read a few times. I’m not going to lie; Lolita is disturbing. The character's inner life is a lot of stale self-talk, but it's a classic.Published 10 days ago by Adan Ramie
Beautifully written book. The poetic nature of Nabokov's prose is exactly what reading classic literature should be about. I highly recommend this book to any fans of literature.Published 12 days ago by Spencer L.
One of the best books ever written. Subtle, layered, infinitely elegant writing.
And, surprisingly, the subject is still disquieting. Read more
What an infuriating literary experience. On the one hand, the loathsome premise of the novel was so off-putting, at times it was all I could do to force myself to read on. Read morePublished 16 days ago by J Thomas