"Nabokov would have wanted me to become his Person from Porlock," Dmitri says, in a typically hamfisted reference to the figure who intruded on Coleridge's great poem "Kubla Khan" before it was finished. But his preface lacks an appropriately chastened quality (after all, he defied his father's wishes). Instead, Dmitri airs old grievances. He complains of a customs inspector stealing a flask of cognac from the family (in 1940) and then of his own personal loss (in 1948) of an inscribed first edition of "Lolita." He guiltily attacks those who would fault his decision to publish "The Original of Laura" as "half-literate journalists" and "lesser minds" and "individuals of limited imagination."
Friday, December 11, 2009
Dept. of Bad Heirs
What's wrong with the "new" Vladimir Nabokov novel. (Wall St. Journal)