Tournament of Books 2015
 
 

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN a $100 Credit

Subscribe to PowellsBooks.news
for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

Visit our stores


    Recently Viewed clear list


    The Powell's Playlist | January 15, 2015

    Mary Helen Specht: IMG The Powell's Playlist: Mary Helen Specht



    Migratory Animals is mostly set in Texas during the first years of the most recent recession, when the cast of characters — an eclectic group... Continue »

    spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$42.95
New Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
available for shipping or prepaid pickup only
Available for In-store Pickup
in 7 to 12 days
Qty Store Section
25 Remote Warehouse Literary Criticism- General

More copies of this ISBN

This title in other editions

The Magician's Doubts: Nabokov and the Risks of Fiction (Readers' Subscription Book Club)

by

The Magician's Doubts: Nabokov and the Risks of Fiction (Readers' Subscription Book Club) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

As a child in Russia, Vladimir Nabokov enjoyed conjuring: "I loved doing simple tricks--turning water into wine, that kind of thing." In this engrossing book Michael Wood explores the blend of arrogance and mischief that makes Nabokov such a fascinating and elusive master of fiction. Wood argues that Nabokov is neither the aesthete he liked to pretend to be nor the heavy-handed moralist recent critics make him. Major works like Pnin, Lolita, Pale Fire and Ada appear in a new light, but there are also chapters on earlier works, like the Real Life of Sebastian Knight; on selected short stories; and on the translation of Eugene Onegin, as well as detailed discussions of Nabokov's ideas of literature, memory, pity, and pain.

The book comes fully to terms with Nabokov's blend of playfulness and seriousness, delving into the real delight of reading him and the odd disquiet that lurks beneath that pleasure. Wood's speculations spin outward to illuminate the ambiguities and aspirations of the modern novel, and to raise the question of how we uncover "the author" in a work, without falling into the obvious biographical traps. The Magician's Doubts slices through the dustier conventions of criticism and never loses sight of the emotional and sensual pleasure of reading.

Synopsis:

"Michael Wood's study of Nabokov is a stunningly brilliant analysis of how, as he says, the sly idiot, the haughty mandarin, and the great, doubting magician get along together in works like Lolita and Ada.... In his own beautifully supple and attractive prose, [Wood] renders his insights with grace and wisdom. The Magician's Doubts is, quite simply, a wonderful book, not to be passed up."--Edward Said

Synopsis:

As a child in Russia, Vladimir Nabokov enjoyed conjuring: "I loved doing simple tricks--turning water into wine, that kind of thing." In this engrossing book Michael Wood explores the blend of arrogance and mischief that makes Nabokov such a fascinating and elusive master of fiction. Wood argues that Nabokov is neither the aesthete he liked to pretend to be nor the heavy-handed moralist recent critics make him. Major works like Pnin, Lolita, Pale Fire and Ada appear in a new light, but there are also chapters on earlier works, like the Real Life of Sebastian Knight; on selected short stories; and on the translation of Eugene Onegin, as well as detailed discussions of Nabokov's ideas of literature, memory, pity, and pain.

The book comes fully to terms with Nabokov's blend of playfulness and seriousness, delving into the real delight of reading him and the odd disquiet that lurks beneath that pleasure. Wood's speculations spin outward to illuminate the ambiguities and aspirations of the modern novel, and to raise the question of how we uncover "the author" in a work, without falling into the obvious biographical traps. The Magician's Doubts slices through the dustier conventions of criticism and never loses sight of the emotional and sensual pleasure of reading.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements viii

Preface: Tricks of Loss 1

1. Deaths of the Author 9

2. Lost Souls: The Real Life of Sebastian Knight 29

3. The Cruelty of Chance: Bend Sinister, 'Signs and Symbols', 'The Vane Sisters' 55

4. The World Without Us: Speak, Memory 83

5. The Language of Lolita 103

6. The Poem of the Past: Eugene Onegin 143

7. Pnin's Revenge 157

8. The Demons of our Pity: Pale Fire 173

9. Happy Families: Ada 206

Epilogue: the History of Pain 232

Chronology: Works by Vladimir Nabokov in English 236

Notes 238

Index 249

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691048307
Author:
Wood, Michael
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Location:
Princeton
Subject:
American - General
Subject:
Russian & Former Soviet Union
Subject:
History and criticism
Subject:
Russian literature
Subject:
American
Subject:
American Language and Literature
Subject:
Comparative Literature
Subject:
American literature
Subject:
Literary Criticism : General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Readers' Subscription Book Club
Publication Date:
December 1997
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Pages:
260
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 13 oz

Other books you might like

  1. Vladimir Nabokov: The Russian Years Used Hardcover $14.95
  2. The Enchanter (Vintage International) Used Trade Paper $8.00
  3. The Gift (Vintage International) Used Trade Paper $10.50
  4. Bend Sinister Used Trade Paper $6.95
  5. God of Small Things Used Hardcover $3.50
  6. Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir...
    Used Trade Paper $4.50

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Humanities » Literary Criticism » General

The Magician's Doubts: Nabokov and the Risks of Fiction (Readers' Subscription Book Club) New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$42.95 In Stock
Product details 260 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691048307 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , "Michael Wood's study of Nabokov is a stunningly brilliant analysis of how, as he says, the sly idiot, the haughty mandarin, and the great, doubting magician get along together in works like Lolita and Ada.... In his own beautifully supple and attractive prose, [Wood] renders his insights with grace and wisdom. The Magician's Doubts is, quite simply, a wonderful book, not to be passed up."--Edward Said
"Synopsis" by , As a child in Russia, Vladimir Nabokov enjoyed conjuring: "I loved doing simple tricks--turning water into wine, that kind of thing." In this engrossing book Michael Wood explores the blend of arrogance and mischief that makes Nabokov such a fascinating and elusive master of fiction. Wood argues that Nabokov is neither the aesthete he liked to pretend to be nor the heavy-handed moralist recent critics make him. Major works like Pnin, Lolita, Pale Fire and Ada appear in a new light, but there are also chapters on earlier works, like the Real Life of Sebastian Knight; on selected short stories; and on the translation of Eugene Onegin, as well as detailed discussions of Nabokov's ideas of literature, memory, pity, and pain.

The book comes fully to terms with Nabokov's blend of playfulness and seriousness, delving into the real delight of reading him and the odd disquiet that lurks beneath that pleasure. Wood's speculations spin outward to illuminate the ambiguities and aspirations of the modern novel, and to raise the question of how we uncover "the author" in a work, without falling into the obvious biographical traps. The Magician's Doubts slices through the dustier conventions of criticism and never loses sight of the emotional and sensual pleasure of reading.

spacer
spacer
  • back to top

FOLLOW US ON...

     
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.