Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0008962, Tue, 25 Nov 2003 07:54:07 -0800

Fw: VN review in Die Zeit of new Rowohlt volume.
NachrichtEDNOTE. NABOKV-L thanks Nassim Balestrini, author of Imagery in Vladimir Nabokov's Last Russian Novel (Dar), Its English Translation (The Gift), and other Prose Works of the 1930s. New York: Peter Lang, 1995 for this item. The prestigious German publisher Rowohlt continues its "Collected Works" of Nabokov. The series is superbly edited by Dieter Zimmer whose annotations makes the volumes essential for Nabokov scholars. The series in 20-some volumes is nearing completion although, as yet, saddly lacking Pale Fire and, especially, Ada.

----- Original Message -----
From: Nassim Balestrini

DIE ZEIT published a review of the new volume of Nabokov's works (this one including _Look at the Harlequins_ and _Transparent Things_) in the Rowohlt series ("Letzte Worte: Nabokovs 'späte Romane' zeigen, dass der Alleskönner doch nicht immer alles gekonnt hatte" ("[Famous] Last Words: Nabokov's 'late novels' show that the man who was capable of everything did not manage to accomplish everything after all") 20 Nov 2003, p.46). The reviewer, Andreas Isenschmid, appears torn between liking and disliking the novels, and he first criticizes some of Brian Boyd's claims, but then gleefully writes that "even" Boyd admits certain reservations concerning _Look at the Harlequins_.
Isenberg applauds Dieter Zimmer's amazing apparatus of notes. Nevertheless, he describes Zimmer's translation of _TT_ as only 'nearly perfect'--one wonders whether he actually took the time to compare the two versions or whether this qualification is merely a hallmark of his work as a reviewer. Despite the critical remarks on Uwe Friesel's translation of _LATH_, including specific examples, one hopes that this review will encourage German-language readers to explore VN's late novels.

Nassim Balestrini, Assistant Professor
Johannes Gutenberg-Universität
Mainz, Germany