This legendary novel has been the source of much anxiety and contention for Nabokov's fans - and family. The late Vladimir Nabokov requested that this unfinished work be destroyed, but his son, Dmitri, did not oblige, although neither did he allow the work to be published - until now. "The Original of Laura" is about a wonderfully large man called Philip Wild, married to a very promiscuous woman, and whose meditations concern the nature of death. The novel was complete in Nabokov's mind, though he died before he could translate his vision on to paper. It is hard, however, to imagine any scholars, Nabokov enthusiasts or literature lovers being disappointed by even these fragments.
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When Vladimir Nabokov died in 1977, he left instructions for his heirs to burn the 138 handwritten index cards that made up the rough draft of his final and unfinished novel, The Original of Laura. But Nabokov’s wife, Vera, could not bear to destroy her husband’s last work, and when she died, the fate of the manuscript fell to her son. Dmitri Nabokov, now seventy-five--the Russian novelist’s only surviving heir, and translator of many of his books--has wrestled for three decades with the decision of whether to honor his father’s wish or preserve for posterity the last piece of writing of one of the greatest writers of the twentieth century. His decision finally to allow publication of the fragmented narrative--dark yet playful, preoccupied with mortality--affords us one last experience of Nabokov’s magnificent creativity, the quintessence of his unparalleled body of work.
Photos of the handwritten index cards accompany the text. They are perforated and can be removed and rearranged, as the author likely did when he was writing the novel.
Look Inside The Original of Laura
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|The Original of Laura (Inside Spread)||The Original of Laura (Open)|
Vladimir Nabokov (1899-1977) was born in St Petersburg. He wrote his first literary works in Russian, but rose to international prominence as a masterly prose stylist for the novels he composed in English, most famously Lolita. Between 1923 and 1940 he published novels, short stories, plays, poems and translations in the Russian language and established himself as one of the most outstanding Russian emigre writers. Dmitri Nabokov is Vladimir Nabokov's son.
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Book Description Penguin Books, 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110141191155
Book Description Penguin Books. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 0141191155 We guarantee all of our items - customer service and satisfaction are our top priorities. Please allow 4 - 14 business days for Standard shipping, within the US. Bookseller Inventory # XM-0141191155
Book Description Penguin London, 2010. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition... SEALED PENGUIN CLASSICS EDITION.David Lodge wrote a brilliant review of this essential book. I would like to quote a section from it, and I hope David Lodge will not mind me doing so: "The way the manuscript has been ingeniously edited and reproduced overcomes to a large extent the disappointment and frustration inherent in reading an unfinished and disconnected narrative, and achieves an interesting aesthetic effect unintended by the author. If the manuscript had been printed in the conventional way we would have hurried through it vainly seeking some coherent plot or hint of its ultimate direction. As it is the book invites us to linger over the text's quiddity, relishing not just its stylistic feats but also the physical marks on the index cards, the poignantly shaky hand of an ailing author, his revisions and insertions and smudged rubbings out, and the tantalising space he left to be filled in later when he found the right word. 'The only way he could posse! ss her was in the most position of copulation'. Few readers will probably read the whole text continuously from the cards, but the matching printed text underneath also has a defamiliarising effect on the act of reading when, quite often, the last line does not extend to the margin. Page 7 for instance ends 'when they and their dog do not happen', and by habit one's brain tries to make sense of this as a complete clause before turning the page to find 'to need it.' This is an effect akin to a caesura in poetry, and indeed the structure of the work as a whole is more akin to modern poetry of the Eliot-Pound kind than a conventional novel, shifting from one voice to another without explanatory links. Towards the end these jump cuts become more abrupt, and there are more cards which bear just a few lines, sometimes evidently Nabokov's notes to himself. A line from The Waste Land, 'These fragments I have shored against my ruins', might have been a suitable epigraph for The Original of Laura, but the last lines of page 21 would make a better one: 'Only by identifying her with an unwritten, half-written, rewritten difficult book could one hope to render what'. Is it, as the blurb claims, Nabokov's 'final great book'? No. Does it contain brilliant, funny, astonishing sentences only Nabokov could have written? Yes. Should it have been preserved and published? Definitely." This new copy is still sealed. It is a heavy volume, and it is undoubtedly a typical Nabokov conundrum. To all addicts of this extraordinary writer this is utterly essential. Extra postage may be needed depending on destination. Language: eng Language: eng 0.0 Language: eng 0.0 Language: eng 0.0. Bookseller Inventory # ABE-2676800439