Vernon, David. Ada to Zembla: The Novels of Vladimir Nabokov. 2022

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Ada to Zembla: The Novels of Vladimir Nabokov
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Exile, émigré and refugee, Vladimir Nabokov (1899–1977) was buffeted by the tides of his times, from the Russian Revolution to the rise of Hitler. But he converted that personal anarchy into a seductive, often controversial, art which searches for meaning amid cruelty and loss.

In Ada to Zembla: The Novels of Vladimir Nabokov, David Vernon explores the works of one of the twentieth century’s key writers: hilarious, exquisite but complex worlds which challenge our complacency and interrogate our perception of beauty, reality and identity.

Lucid and lively, this book devotes a chapter to each of Nabokov’s novels — from his debut, Mary, to the posthumous Laura. Supplementary essays discuss Speak, Memory and other non-fiction, plus the short stories, poetry and plays, as well as Nabokov’s lifelong engagement with chess and butterflies.

Ada to Zembla offers keys to Nabokov’s many locked doors, revealing not only the layers and networks of his novels but their emotional depth and playful sport.