Nabokov was a Russian writer born in 1899, of an aristocrat family of St Petersburg… ;a polyglot, he came to be. He emigrated...more (Nabokov´s perspective)
Nabokov was a Russian writer born in 1899, of an aristocrat family of St Petersburg… ;a polyglot, he came to be. He emigrated to the US and there he wrote Lolita. He lectured at Cornel University for 10 years. From 1961 till 1977 he lived in Montreux, Switzerland, in a hotel, with his wife. There, he continued his other passion: butterflies (how an expert he was on that!). He had many of the alpine type, to collect.
(perspective on the couple)
A hotel barman would say of them: it seemed wife wrote more than the author, because he spent “many hours roaming …in butterfly hunting”. They gave no tips. Yet, I still don’t understand why Montreux reminded him of Russia. The expatriate would say in his last years of life: “there’s nothing to look at”, in Russia.
I’ve heard about the censorship the novel was subjected to. Lolita was refused by four publishers in the US; only in France it got published by Olympic Press. It was a book like “Naked Lunch” or “Lady Chatterley's lover”: censored. Nabokov had later to write an essay affixed to the book,(to appease angers??) where he spoke about: “how reader and writer meet at the …misty mountain of imagination”. Martin Amis wrote about Lolita’s prose: it was like “a muscle-bound man”; a show-off? I wonder.
It seems Nabokov liked Kafka: Thomas Mann and Rilke were dwarfs, compared to Kafka.I've seen a [funny?]footage of someone pretending to be Nabokov lecturing on Kafka's Metamorphosis bug:"some (Jews) don’t know they have... wings".
I haven’t read it all…just seen some footage of the film made.The first pages suggested me the story of a fixation (in the psychoanalytic sense): scholar Humbert Humbert’s: on a 12-year-old girl called Dolores.
I am basing my review on the movie, with same title.
In an Amish community a newborn baby is found dead near a pond. A police officer (Sergeant Lisa M...more I am basing my review on the movie, with same title.
In an Amish community a newborn baby is found dead near a pond. A police officer (Sergeant Lisa Monroe) is called upon to investigate who did it, …who killed the baby. It gets clear that 18 year old Katie runs the risk of prison; she’s the main suspect, since her mother Sarah had no more children. But Katie denies any wrong doing, despite being taken to hospital and all the medical evidence pointing to her.
Sarah says about daughter: “she’s in God’s hands…it’s not Katie’s baby!”. A preliminary investigation concluded that there was a hair-scissors missing.
Meanwhile, according to a judge’s decision, Katie gets a lawyer (Ellie) to work on her defense, though Katie still affirms:”I didn’t have a baby”. Katie Fitch has been charged with “murder in first degree”. Ellie goes to Katie’s place for some days, to try to get the truth; she invites also a psychiatrist called Cooper. To the psychiatrist Katie keeps on denying…but recognizes she feels better when she speaks to her diseased sister. Cooper tells Ellie about “dissociative states”.
Ellie found out Katie speaks in the middle of the night to some absent figure. “I miss you”. Katie says it’s about a dead sister called Anna, she was 12 when she died, she drowned. The lawyer gets more and more puzzled, especially with Amish mores like the one forbidding technology at their homes: she cannot use her computer. There are, yet, strong reasons to believe in fact Katie didn’t do it: because Amish cannot be violent. Until Ellie finds out about a boyfriend of Katie and her brother…
Things get better and better (from the narrative search-for-truth point of view) as the film approaches end. When all seems clarified (the baby died of a natural cause, an infection) and Ellie is about to leave the farm …she finds out about the role of Sarah in cutting the umbilical cord with the missing scissors. What next, now? Maybe forgiveness.
A great story; an inside view of the Amish mind. (less)
Matthew is a very rich lawyer; he’s rotten rich mainly because of heritages he got that date back to his grand grandmother pr...moreA story set in Hawaii.
Matthew is a very rich lawyer; he’s rotten rich mainly because of heritages he got that date back to his grand grandmother princess Kekipi: she married a banker who was her assets manager; now Matt has plenty of properties to sell; and yet he prefers using the money of his own job: ”I don’t like heritages”.
She was seven years younger than Matt. They met 20 years ago. They got married, they had two daughters ….but now she’s in a hospital, in a coma; she had a racing-boat accident. Joanie was alcoholic; she liked motorbikes…and racing-boats.
Scottie is a 10 year old “crazy” girl; her older sister (Alex), once posing as model for bikinis and alike stuff, had drugs problems….and alcohol issues too.
The book describes with great detail those few days (and memories) in and out of hospital visits. Now it’s all about being (and learning TO BE) a competent father with Scottie and Alex. Being able to learn from nanny Esther about the minutiae of foods and mobile phone messaging slang... and all kinds of habits of irreverent Scottie.
For some time Matt feels awkward, an “ass-hole father”. While in hospital he looks at his wife and thinks:” I need you”. How to say farewell to a person he loves so much?, how to explain it to 10 year old Scottie? Alex had been away in a special school due to her drugs problem; Matt brings her back home; she brings along her boyfriend.
They receive updates from doctor Johnston: mother signs are getting worse. It’s an irreversible coma. Matt gets to know her life will: no life supporting systems: no life-preserving machines.
Alex had drug problems…and she’s the one who’ll tell father that Joanie was having a love affair. Things get really complicated for Matt. He cries for the first time. He’s got to reformulate his feeling world.
These are very tense (few) days for Matt and the girls. The book is an inside-his-troubled-mind journey/window.
Trials,coping with death ….and life. A fine job by writer Kaui Hart Hemmings. No wonder the book turned into a movie.