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Nabokov's Pale Fire:
The Magic of Artistic Discovery
Brian Boyd

Book Description | Table of Contents
Chapter 2


"[E]ye-opening. . . . Boyd's singular reading . . . suggests a novel that is in fact startlingly harmonious, one in which life and death blend in seamless unity."--Daniel Zalewski, New York Times Book Review

"Writing with an intensity that would suit Pale Fire's own narrators, Brian Boyd, a leading authority on Nabokov, gives an exquisitely detailed reading of the book."--Publishers Weekly

"This startling new theory is not only hard to refute--it makes it impossible for anyone to see Pale Fire under the same light. . . . For the discoveries that lie ahead we are now indebted to Boyd's scrupulous research and pertinent interpretation. Nabokov's Pale Fire: The Magic of Artistic Discovery is truly the essential companion/mode d'emploi to one of the greatest masterpieces of the 20th century."--Alexandre O. Philippe, Bloomsbury Review

"Boyd's Pale Fire will change how we read Nabokov's. Boyd brilliantly shows the intensity with which the three parts of the novel 'recall' one another. . . . Above all, Nabokov's Pale Fire is a manifesto for close reading. There can be no better recommendation than that."--Eric Naiman, Slavic Review


"No one knows more about Nabokov and his works than Brian Boyd does, and this book is obviously a work of passion. It enlivens our sense of a marvelous novel, it encourages generous close reading, and it makes the best case possible for the general human value of Nabokov's fiendish cleverness."--Michael Wood, Princeton University, author of The Magician's Doubts: Nabokov and the Risks of Fiction

"Brian Boyd is Nabokov's ideal, astute, and observant reader, paying attention to every detail which, for Nabokov, was the essence of all writing and all reading. Boyd does so not only intelligently and thoughtfully but also lovingly."--Galya Diment, University of Washington

"This is a remarkable piece of literary detective work. Brian Boyd brings to bear on Nabokov's most elaborately encrypted novel an acute attention to textual detail and a vast fund of relevant learning, coupled with endlessly resourceful ingenuity. The result is a provocative thesis about the structure and meaning of the novel-seemingly a "solution" but, as he himself grants, really grounds for continuing discussion, and in any case, a vivid demonstration of the excitements of skilled reading."--Robert Alter, University of California, Berkeley

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File created: 4/21/2017

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