A novel constructed around the last great poem of a fictional American poet, John Shade, and an account of his death. The poem appears in full and the narrative develops through the lengthy, and increasingly eccentric, notes by his posthumous editor.
6 September 2012
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Vladimir Nabokov (Author) Vladimir Nabokov (1899-1977), born in St Petersburg, exiled in Cambridge, Berlin, and Paris, became the greatest Russian writer of the first half of the twentieth century. Fleeing to the US with his family in 1940, he then became the greatest writer in English of the second half of the century, and even 'God's own novelist' (William Deresiewicz). He lived in Europe from 1959 onwards, and died in Montreux, Switzerland. All his major works - novels, stories, an autobiography, poems, plays, lectures, essays and reviews - are published in Penguin Modern Classics. Mary McCarthy (Introducer) Mary McCarthy was an American literary critic and author of more than two dozen books. Her debut novel, The Company She Keeps, initiated her ascent to become one of the most celebrated writers of her generation, a reputation bolstered by her controversial 1963 New York Times bestseller The Group, which was banned in Australia for its frank portrayal of female sexuality. McCarthy was married four times, including to the critic Edmund Wilson. She died in 1989.