Vladimir Nabokov

20 Things You Didn’t Know About Stanley Kubrick’s ‘Lolita’

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In 1955, Vladimir Nabokov wrote about a predatory middle-aged literature professor who succumbs to his desires for the flesh and fancy of a 12-year-old girl he nicknames Lolita. The novel went on to become one of the most controversial works of the 20th century. A few years later, Stanley Kubrick directed the most successful adaptation of Lolita, despite naysayers who said it simply couldn’t be done. More than 50 years later, Kubrick’s film, starring Sue Lyon as the precocious girl, still gets people talking thanks to its stellar performances (Peter Sellers was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Golden Globe) and, of course, Nabokov’s scintillating material. Here are 20 things you might not know about the film.
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50 Great Novels About Madness

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Not so much into March Madness? Well, perhaps you should look at it another way. March is the perfect month for reading books about madness — it is a transitional time, after all, possessed of both lion and lamb. Plus, you’ll have ample reading time, both outside and inside. The books herein, it should be noted, are those that deal with a kind of literary madness — obsession and absurdity and hallucination — not directly focusing on mental illness proper, whenever the two can be separated. So you won’t find The Bell Jar or One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest or The Yellow Wallpaper here, though those are all excellent …Read More

50 Books Guaranteed to Make You More Interesting

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Everybody out there could stand to be a little more interesting. Yes, even you, trilingual lion-tamer astrophysicist reader. And you know what makes you more interesting? Books, of course. (You knew it was going to be books, because you’re already a little interesting) But not just any books. Some books have more capacity to raise your interest level than others. Here’s a list of 50 books that will make you smarter, funnier, deeper, and yes, more interesting — at least to some …Read More

The 50 Sexiest Literary Villains

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In The Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy, open-mouthed, says “I’ve never heard of a beautiful witch before,” Glinda famously quips that only bad witches are ugly. But ’tis not so — or at least, there are plenty of very bad witches who are the opposite of ugly: beautiful, sexy, charming, devastatingly intelligent, or all of the above. So, in honor of J.K. Rowling’s outrage that we all love Draco so much, here’s 50 villains that we wouldn’t kick out of …Read More

50 Books to Help You Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

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Happy New Year! Now get to work. Everyone loves a good resolution at this time of year, but in three weeks’ time? Whole different story. So what to do when your resolve is flagging and you need a little reminder of the shiny new self you promised past you? Well, you might try and take some inspiration from a good book. After all, the worst that can happen is that you’ll have gotten some quality literature under your belt, right? Here, you’ll find book prescriptions for ten worthy resolutions, from getting healthier to learning new skills to reading more poetry. Yes. You’re …Read More

Flavorwire Premiere: Slim Twig’s Lost, ‘Lolita’-Inspired Album, ‘A Hound at the Hem’

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Next week, DFA Records will re-release Slim Twig’s A Hound at the Hem — although “re-release” is a bit of a misnomer, to be perfectly honest. The album was never widely released to begin with, for reasons made clear in DFA’s accompanying literature: “Upon completing AHATH in 2010, Twig struggled to find wide release for [the album] due to its uncompromising textural onslaught and disregard for genre. This course of events set the stage for the composition and release of Sof’ Sike, a somewhat more conventional set of pop songs released on Paper Bag Records, in 2012. The title of that work refers to Twig’s own conception of Hound as the hard-psych flipside to his work of that period.” Twig, the moniker for Toronto native Max Turnbull, recorded the album in 2010 and self-released it in a very limited run on vinyl in 2012. And so Turnbull went on with his prolific creative life, which includes acting and scoring films (his latest was 2013’s We Come as Friends, the festival-favorite doc about Sudan’s internal conflict).
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50 of the Scariest Short Stories of All Time

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It’s that time of year again, when the pumpkins come out, the fake cobwebs are hung and we feel that dormant urge to be chilled, thrilled and spooked to our bones. Get out your flashlights, because a scary story awaits — actually, make that fifty of them. Now, there’s more to scary stories than goblins, ghouls, blood and your general horror — here there be monsters of many kinds, existential and literal, extraordinary and everyday. And remember: like beauty, fear is in the bloody eye of the beholder. So whether you yearn for classic horror or literary fiction guaranteed to make your skin crawl, read on. If you dare!
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50 of the Greatest Characters in Literature

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One of the things literature does better than almost any other medium is allow us to experience another person’s quality of mind, and sometimes even inhabit it. It follows, then, that every avid reader has a favorite literary character — whether they’re beloved for dastardly deeds, tough-girl antics, sex appeal, or a high snark quotient — and that there are many impossibly good ones out there. Click through to find 50 of the …Read More