Monday, September 22, 2014

Teaser Tuesday 235: Lolita




Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

* Grab your current book or recent read.
* Share a few "teaser" sentences from somewhere in the book.
* BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away. You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title and author so that other participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teaser!




This week I am reading Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov for a classics group read. I held off starting this one to coincide with Banned Books Week, which runs Sept 21-27. Here are the opening paragraphs:


Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta.

She was Lo, plain Lo, in the morning, standing four feet ten in one sock. She was Lola in slacks. She was Dolly at school. She was Dolores on the dotted line. But in my arms she was always Lolita.

(Part One, Ch 1)




ABOUT THE BOOK:

Lolita is a novel by Vladimir Nabokov, written in English and published in 1955 in Paris, in 1958 in NY and in 1959 in London. It was later translated by its Russian-native author into Russian. The novel is notable for its controversial subject: the protagonist and unreliable narrator, a 37–38-year-old literature professor, Humbert Humbert, is obsessed with the 12-year-old Dolores Haze, with whom he becomes sexually involved after he becomes her stepfather. "Lolita" is his private nickname for Dolores (both the name and nickname are of Spanish origin).

After its publication, Lolita attained a classic status, becoming one of the best-known and most controversial examples of 20th century literature. The name "Lolita" has entered pop culture to describe a sexually precocious girl. The novel was adapted to film by Stanley Kubrick in 1962, and again in 1997 by Adrian Lyne. It has also been adapted several times for stage and has been the subject of two operas, two ballets and an acclaimed but failed Broadway musical.

Lolita is included on Time's List of the 100 Best Novels in English-language from 1923 to 2005. It's 4th on the Modern Library's 1998 list of the 100 Best Novels of the 20th century. It was also included in the 100 Best Books of All Time, compiled in 2002 by the Norwegian Book Club.




24 comments:

Alice Audrey said...

I've always meant to read this one.

Heather said...

Alice: I guess between this and The Awakening we're now even, huh? ;-)

colleen said...

I think the Kinks Lola might have been inspired by this. Was it Tropic of Cancer that went around when I was in high school as being the banned (dirty) book of the day?

Heather said...

Colleen: Actually...according to their biography, the song by The Kinks came about after the band manager Robert Wace spent a night dancing with a transvestite. Have not read Tropic of Cancer, though I have read other works by Henry Miller.

JLS Hall said...

Lolita is one of my all-time favorite books. I read it for the first time when I was not much older than Lo herself, and I've re-read it several times since then. Hope you enjoy it, too. Wonderful teaser!

Creations by Laurel-Rain Snow said...

I have seen both movie adaptations, but have yet to read this book...must correct that! And I love Russian authors...LOL

Here's mine: “HELLO FROM THE GILLESPIES”

madamevauquer said...

What a great idea to read this during Banned Books Week. I am always amazed at some of the books that are banned and the reasons given. Not Lolita though, lol.

Thanks for coming by to see mine at http://wp.me/pZnGI-dJ

Heather said...

Joy: Wow, I can't imagine reading this at that age. And, I confess, I'd probably find it easier to get into if paragraphs did not meander for two or three pages. I keep losing his train of thought, LOL.

Heather said...

Laurel-Rain: I have not seen either of the movie adaptations, guess I'll have to add this title to that list now, LOL.

Heather said...

MadameV: Thank you. Isn't it amazing what books have been challenged over the years and the reasons why? Especially kids books. Some parents are far too protective and/or have no idea what kids really know.

Kathy Martin said...

Interesting teaser. I've never read this one. Happy reading!

Cleo Bannister said...

I love the teaser and this is one book that I feel I really should read. Great timing for banned books week too! Thanks for visiting my TT http://cleopatralovesbooks.wordpress.com/2014/09/23/teaser-tuesday-september-23/

Heather said...

Kathy M: I wouldn't be reading it now myself, group read or not, had I not found a copy in like new condition at the library's used book sale (for only a dollar, no less). It's been...interesting...so far.

Heather said...

Thanks, Cleo-- As I said, I intentionally delayed starting it to coincide with this week. NOT that I don't have other challenged books to get to in Mount TBR. ;-)

Laura Thomas said...

I've not heard of this one before but I'm now intrigued:)
Here is my TT - http://fuonlyknew.com/2014/09/23/teaser-tuesdays-82-leaves-by-michael-baron/

Catherine @ Book Club Librarian said...

A perfect choice for Banned Book Week...enjoy!

Thanks for visiting my blog.

Kerry O'Donnell said...

I could never get into this one myself, but its a great choice for this week. My teasers this week are also from Banned Books.

Claudia {Sparrowhawk} said...

What elegant writing! I love the author's mood, everything about this teaser is elegant and alluring; great teaser!

Travel Glasses | Chess Desalls

Yvonne said...

I haven't read this one. Great choice for a teaser!

Nyze Gremio-Velasco said...

Sounds creepy! Here's mine:
Stolen SongBird (The Malediction Trilogy #1)

Heather said...

Laura: What, how have you not heard of this one? I'm glad the teaser has intrigued you.

Catherine: Thank you, I thought it rather appropriate. *g*

Kerry: I have had some difficulty getting into it -- more for the writing style than content. It's definitely not a "fast" read.

Heather said...

Claudia: The teaser is indicative of the language and writing style, and while I love the vocabulary, it does make it more difficult to get into the story. I keep getting lost in those long sentences and paragraphs!

Thanks, Yvonne! It's been on my radar for a while, but doubt I would have actually picked it up were it not for a group read.

Nyze: There is a certain creep factor to it, and yet the writing is incredible.

kelley jensen said...

hmmm. . . I liked the teaser, but the blurb turned me away. The Daisy's were pretty in your Wednesday shots. kelley—the road goes ever ever on

Heather said...

Kelley: Definitely not a book for everyone. Thank you for your coment on the flowers -- which are asters, by the way, not daisies. Same family, different species. ;)