Jeremy Irons' voice is perfectly matched to Humbert Humbert, a wonderful performance, worthy of multilpe listens. My favorite book this year.
First off, they couldn't have found a better narrator for this book. Jeremy Irons is right up there with Jim Dale's readings of the Harry Potter books. His pacing, accents, and tone are all a perfect match for this book.
I never read Lolita when I was in school and I was intimidated by it for a while (thinking it would be too difficult or I wouldn't understand it). I needn't have worried. The story is pretty straightforward. The langauge is a little difficult, but I suspect that Nabokov just writes in a style that is somewhat complex. I hit "rewind" fairly often and listened to some parts more than once....sometimes to make sure I grasped it but sometimes because the writing was so beautiful and I wanted to hear it again. So I would say Lolita isn't the easiest listen, but it is definitely worth the little bit of effort it takes.
I was surprised by how funny it is in some parts (laugh out loud funny). It is also sad, beautiful, touching, and revolting. It's always a good sign when a book makes me feel a range of different emotions, and Lolita does this for sure.
Nabokov is undeniably an exceptional author, how else could anyone enjoy reading about a pedophile. For the faint of heart, don't bother with this one. If you can bare with the awful subject matter, you will be dazzled by the written word. I had a difficult time with the subject but could not deny how beautifully crafted this book was. The narrator was fantastic to listen to.
Chet Yarbrough, an audio book addict, exercises two cocker spaniels twice a day with an Ipod in his pocket and earbuds in his ears. Hope these few reviews seduce the public into a similar obsession but walk safely and be aware of the unaware.
Lolita burns in your mind like Native Son, with a kindred repulsiveness. Lolita sears your conscience because it speaks like an apology for pedophilia. Jeremy Irons??? spoken interpretation of Lolita is breath taking. His voice captures the licentious nature of the main character, Humbert Humbert. He reads Nabokov???s lines with a beautiful alliteration that reveals the poetry in Nabokov???s prose. The subject is inherently repulsive. The rationalizations of a confessed pedophile, that admits his guilt, is difficult, if not impossible, to understand. So, what is the point of the book? The best face is that Nabokov reveals the depth of a pedophile???s sickness, some of its causes and consequences, and the utter futility of psychological examination; the worst face is that Nabokov justifies pedophilia based on human nature. For my own conscience, and for respect to a literary genius, I pick the first rather than the second reason for his decision to write this book.
I had to read this for my book club or wouldn't have gotten into it. None of the characters are warm and fuzzy. None made me want to sit under a tree and talk with them. Rather I felt like a peeping Tom following about a dirty old man prying into his life with my binoculars. One club member found a story that Mr. Nabokov read about trying to teach a chimpanzee to paint. When she finally used the brush it was to paint straight lines - the bars of her cage. This made Nabokov create Lolita to express the many types of cages and prisons that people live in. Nabokov is brilliant but I wouldn't want to read this book again.
Glad I got over being too snobby to listen to audio books!
A masterpiece of writing paired with a reader who really brings the characters to life. Jeremy Irons was born to narrate this book.
This is a masterful recording of a classic tragedy. Humbert Humbert, a pedophile, narrates his corruption of a little girl, and the consequences that follow. Lolita is a work of high literature, with great vocabulary such as akimbo, plangency, priapic, and nonce. Nabokov needlessly drags out the second half of the story, as Humbert and Lolita travel around the country. I found it helpful to read along in a printed copy of the book and to consult the Internet for a summary of the key plot points.
This is an incredible narration of an incredibly well-written book. This is a prose that makes you want to read everything that Nabokov ever wrote, which is exactly what I am undertaking to do.
Jeremy Irons does as excellent job of voicing the smitten, anguished Humbert. Check out his movie version for a more faithful take on this classic novel than the B/W Kubrick version from the 60s.
Like James Joyce's work, Lolita has always been commended to me as a masterpiece of humor and multi-textuality, but I have never made the time for it. Until now. Hearing Jeremy Irons sing through Nabokov's text is an utter joy. His voice registers both unctuous and precise; the perfect pitch for the paradoxical eros and pathos that plagues Humbert Humbert. I loved Irons' reading so much, I bought a copy of the text to read while listening to his sublime performance.