“Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin. My soul.” Thus begins Humbert Humbert’s tale of his caustic seduction of Dolores Haze. And Nabokov’s enticement of the reader into the mind of a pedophile.
Great fiction should place you inside the skin of the protagonist. Nabokov is the master. He is gentle at first. You’re not too alarmed. By the time you become repulsed, it’s too late. Humbert only provides fleeting glimpses of Lolita’s suffering in his obsessive narrative.You are left to imagine how she must feel. But her experience is almost more brutally vivid left unarticulated.