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  • Published: 19 January 2021
  • ISBN: 9780141398389
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 576
  • RRP: $22.99

Think, Write, Speak

Uncollected Essays, Reviews, Interviews and Letters to the Editor




An extraordinary collection of Nabokov's little-known published material from across his life - from student essays to his last interviews

The last major collection of Nabokov's published material, Think, Write, Speak brings together a treasure trove of previously uncollected texts from across the author's extraordinary career. Each phase of his wandering life is included, from a precocious essay written while still at Cambridge in 1921, through to his fame in the aftermath of the publication of Lolita to the final, fascinating interviews given shortly before his death in 1977.

Introduced and edited by his biographer Brian Boyd, this is an essential work for anyone who has been drawn into Nabokov's literary orbit. Here he is at his most inspirational, curious, misleading and caustic. The seriousness of his aesthetic credo, his passion for great writing and his mix of delight and dismay at his own, sudden global fame in the 1950s are all brilliantly delineated here.

  • Published: 19 January 2021
  • ISBN: 9780141398389
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 576
  • RRP: $22.99

About the author

Vladimir Nabokov

One of the twentieth century's master prose stylists, Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977) was born in St Petersburg, but left Russia when the Bolsheviks seized power. He studied French and Russian literature at Trinity College, Cambridge, then lived in Berlin and Paris, where he launched a brilliant literary career. In 1940 he moved to the United States, and achieved renown as a novelist, poet, critic, and translator. He taught literature at Wellesley, Stanford, Cornell, and Harvard. In 1961 he moved to Montreux, Switzerland, where he died in 1977.

His first novel in English was The Real Life of Sebastian Knight, published in 1941. His other books include Ada or Ardor (1969), Laughter in the Dark (1933), Pale Fire (1962), the short story collection Details of a Sunset (1976) and Lolita (1955), his best-known novel.

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Praise for Think, Write, Speak

Masterly, hilarious, truly insightful ... Vladimir Nabokov's views are of compelling interest - paradoxically, because he regularly insisted that his novels sent no message, made no moral case and presented no argument ... His non-fiction stands up astonishingly well.

Philip Hensher, The Spectator

A rich treat for Nabokov's admirers.

Kirkus

For those of us who are Vladimir Nabokov completists perhaps we finally have closure ... Now we have the full Nabokovian ex cathedra pronouncements in all their typical vim and vigour.

William Boyd, Times Literary Supplement

The writer's genius for nailing a subject in a sentence lives on in his stinging reviews and defensive interviews.

Christian Lorentzen, Financial Times

A fuller, and maybe truer, image of Nabokov ... The greatest pleasure in reading this book is the impression you get that you're opening your presents underneath the Christmas tree ... A lovely blend of literary elements and of personal details pertaining to Nabokov: you experience intellectual marvel when you detect the premises of a famous quote or a literary pattern, and you feel particular pleasure when you get a glimpse of the man hiding behind the famous writer and becoming suddenly relatable.

Julie Loison-Charles, Transatlantica

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