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Perfection

October 12, 2010 - Meg Alexander
I now understand my husband’s love affair with “Lolita.”

It sounds sick, I know, especially considering the story’s subject and subsequent notoriety, but my quiet husband is all but boisterous in his obsession with Nabokov — and “Lolita” ranks at the top of his list. This list, mind you, includes not just literature but all art, in all its various forms. And now I get it.

I finished “Lolita” recently and have developed a literary crush of my own, it seems. The book’s conclusion is so brilliant, hilarious, exciting, tragic — what a combination! — and Nabokov pulls is all together like a mad genius. Refraining from writing a spoiler is jklfdjkl;afdsjkjdsaadjj;kl so tempting, I can hardly resist. jk;fd;jklfdjkf;dajkl;dfkjdfjafakjdsfkfdkjdfalk;

Whew. I think I got that out of my system. Let me expound not on the events that take place in “Lolita” but on the general wonder of its conclusion.

Too many times I have read a book, only to be disappointed by the ending. Either it leaves you in need of a stupid sequel; it wraps up too neatly; or it doesn’t seem to wrap up at all, leaving you with that embarrassing “Huh?” moment that tells me either I didn’t get it, or the author didn’t.

“Lolita” was perfection. Nabokov knew what he was doing, beyond a doubt, and he did it, and he did it well. The conclusion provides that rare, blessed “Ahhhh” moment — think angelic Alleluia choir “ahhhh,” not corny metaphorical light bulb moment — that makes you, the reader, want to put the book down just to applaud before picking it up again to start over from the beginning.

 
 

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