NABOKV-L post 0000446, Fri, 27 Jan 1995 20:35:09 -0800

Reading Nabokov
Over the last couple of years there have been several queries from people
who were just getting into Nabokov. Most of these queries were of the
general sort "what are the essential critical books." The answer, of
course, depends upon what you are interested in, but a general answer is
now easy to give. After reading the major VN works, the two most
essential things to have on your shelf are Brian Boyd's two volumes and,
now, the Garland Guide to Nabokov, edited by Vladimir Alexandrov. The
latter provides a well-nigh comprehensive treatment of very many aspects
of Nabokov, written by forty-odd specialists. Most of the articles also
provide excellent bibliographic surveys of their topic. After absorbing
these two fundamental works, the reader will be well prepared to dive
into more specialized studies.

D. Barton Johnson
Department of Germanic, Slavic and Semitic Studies
Phelps Hall
University of California at Santa Barbara
Santa Barbara, CA 93106
Phone and Fax: (805) 687-1825
Home Phone: (805) 682-4618