Nabokov V. Lolita

When it was published in 1955, Lolita immediately became a cause célèbre because of the freedom and sophistication with which it handled the unusual erotic predilections of its protagonist, Humbert Humbert, and his two principal interlocutors, the pre-pubescent Lolita, and the magnificently weird playwright, Mr Clare Quilty. But Nabokov’s wise, ironic, elegant masterpiece owes its stature as one of the twentieth century’s classic novels not to the controversy its material aroused, but to the fact that its author used that material to tell a love story almost shocking in its beauty and tenderness.

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