Friday, August 6, 2010
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
I was re-reading Lolita on an airplane a few years ago and an older lady leaned over and asked, "is that book still as controversial today as it was when it came out?" I told her that I was not alive in 1955, but that it was considered too racy to include in my high school English class in 1983 and I still felt like the subject matter was as taboo today as ever. Seducing an underage girl and abducting her after her mother dies is, thankfully, still thought to be reprehensible in 2010, unless, of course, you are Roman Polanski. While the narrator and rapist Humbert Humbert is a despicable person, his character still captivates us with humor and his admissions that what he is doing is wrong, offsetting the tragic plot. If it were not for this, the book would be unreadable instead of the classic it is today.
Labels: The 25 Books You Should Read