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Monday, May 5, 2014

Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov

Humbert is a desperate who cannot find satisfaction in any part of his life, especially when it comes to women. His first love as a young man died one summer afternoon, which is where, he now understands his own heart may have died. He dated and fooled around. He even went so far as to get married, but his marriage predictably failed due to his lack of interest.

When he lodges with Charlotte Haze, he's nonplussed by her nature and her body. But when he discovers she has a daughter, a twelve year old, a nymphet living under her roof, he changes his mind. The lovely Dolores, Dolly, becomes his obsession. And when Charlotte confesses her love to Humbert he ceases the grand opportunity to capture Dolores, his Lolita, to do his bidding and satisfy his sexual desires.

I attempted to read this once before in text format, but stopped about a quarter of the way through because I couldn't get past the distracting unreliable narrative. In audio format, it felt more like stream-of-consciousness, making it much easier for me to follow.

Throughout the book, Humbert attempts to justify his horrific behavior to the reader by saying he was taking care of Dolores, putting her best interest in mind, and did his best to provide for her in every way he wanted. However, as the story continues, Humbert stops justifying and begins to explaining. Until finally, even he admits to himself that what he has done to his step-daughter has ruined her life in many ways.

I didn't enjoy reading this, but I can at least put it on the list of classics I've read.

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