Suppose things had worked out better for Humbert Humbert. Suppose he'd gone to jail for a while but hadn't had a heart attack there, and suppose Lolita hadn't died while still a teenager, giving birth to a stillborn child. Suppose instead that they'd both survived, had various sordid adventures, and then miraculously reconnected twenty years later, at which point they suddenly realised that they had some something beautiful and unique together. And suppose that Humbert actually wrote his memoirs when he was a near-senile old man, confusing his native country of France with his adopted country of the US and cheerfully twisting all the facts to present them in as rosy a light as possible, while Lolita edits his manuscript over his shoulder with a quirky, loving aside every now and then to her darling Humbie.
You got all that? Well, the result might be a little bit like Ada
, an imaginative and disquieting novel even by Nabokov standards. If you appreciated Lolita
and thought, as I did, that it was essentially a very moral book, you might want to check it out. And if Lolita
left you feeling angry and indignant, then stay well clear. You really
won't like this one.