What Are You Reading for Banned Books Week?

I’m reading Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov.   Yes, THAT Lolita*.   AND, I purchased The Annotated ___ Edited with preface, introduction, and notes by Alfred Appel, Jr.  Revised and Updated, too!

talbaa

Softdrink is organizing a read-along, so do check out her post if you want to join us.

Do you think this book would qualify for the RIP-IV?    It surely IS creepy and has the power to make. skin. crawl.

September 26th through October 3rd 2009 will be the official Banned Books Week sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA).

This is my first annotated book and I’m not sure yet how I’m going to use it.   Should I just read the story THEN go back and read the notes?   Do I only check back when I need all the freaking French explained/translated?   I do admit I like the word definitions, even the English words — quick and handy.  (For a great post on her thoughts about annotations, visit Eva and her post on her beloved P&P)

I did not read the Introduction – I think I bring enough assumptions about what this book is about just from popular culture reference that I don’t need anymore to distract me or ruin the story.   I did, however, read the Preface.   Get this:

“This annotated edition, a corrected and chastely revised version of the edition first published in 1970, is designed for the general reader and particularly for use in college literature courses.”

WHAT?!?!   chastely revised?    Do I need to go find the original-original; are they saying the NOTES are corrected and not Nabokov’s novel?     Anyway, I was bit offput by this sentence but am jumping in anyway.

“…, the reader of Lolita attempts to arrive at some sense of its overall “meaning,” while at the same time having to struggle with the difficulties posed by the recondite materials and rich, elaborate verbal textures.”

I had to look up recondite:  (of a subject or knowledge) little known; abstruse.     and then had to look up abstruse:  difficult to understand; obscure.

Let the fun begin!!  What are YOU reading for Banned Books Week? The Biblio Blogazine has much more info on Banned Books, challenges, lists, etc.

* It cracks me up how many times I’ve been responded to with “Reading Lolita in Tehran?” when I’ve mentioned Lolita, even at the library, no less.   (this RLIT book also pops up first when you do a library search on just Lolita.  Then after that, I asked the librarian at the ref desk and she asked, too!)     I did read Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi (and recommend) a few years before I knew about book blogging.   I have always hoped to get to the real, the original, the classic Lolita.   Here goes.

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15 thoughts on “What Are You Reading for Banned Books Week?

  1. Eep! “Chastely revised” does not sound good. I read Lolita last year and loved it, and I mooched Reading Lolita in Tehran recently, so I’ll be reading that too soon!

    I’m reading The Bermudez Triangle by Maureen Johnson for Banned Books Week. It’s been challenged because it has girls kidding (teh horror!) I’m really loving it so far: lots of humour, characters I wish I could be friends with…it’s awesome YA along the lines of John Green.

  2. Do you not like knowing the ending? Because I’ve often found that annotated editions talk a lot in the notes about what happens throughout the book – which is fine for me because I always read the end. But otherwise, might be better to hold off reading the notes. 😛

  3. I am not reading anything specially for Banned Books Week, since I have discovered that many of the books I read and have read are actually featuring on many of the Banned Books List. Haven’t read Lolita though. Good luck 🙂

  4. My son read this last year–my 17-yr-old. Even he found it creepy and when you can creep out a 17-yr-old boy, that’s quite an accomplishment. Of course he’s version was not “chastely” revised. If you’re not creeped out, then that’s a little too much revision!

  5. As a teacher, I challenge my students to read Banned Books. Right now, we’re reaching TKAM. The kids love, love, love it.

    And personally speaking, I’m reading Guernsey. Not banned. Not challenged. Just really good.

  6. I’ve finished, but I won’t be posting for a few days. I still need to think about it some more!

    I’m reading the annotated Dracula…and all the annotations are distracting! I try to find a breaking point in the text and then I read a bunch of the annotations at once. It still interrupts the flow, though.

  7. I need to dig out a banned book _ I’m sure I’ve got more than one … I read Lolita last year as well. The language is gorgeous but the content made me want to go to confession and bleach my brain.
    Enjoy!

  8. I’m not reading anything specifically for Banned Books Week because I never know these things are coming. I need to be more attentive. But, I’ve read a ton of banned books and in most cases I can’t figure out why on earth anyone would object to them.

  9. I’ve been looking at all the banned/challenged lists making the rounds this week — and am surprised at how many are books I’ve read in the past, including “Lolita”.

    This year is the first time I’ve actually planned to read a banned book during Banned Books Week, and it’ll be “Rabbit, Run” by John Updike. I don’t think I’ll be done by the end of this week — I haven’t even started!!

  10. I read Lolita when I was younger and it creeped me out more than I can even tell you. Ugh! But, I love Reading Lolita in Tehran and so I’ve been meaning to reread the former to help me understand the latter better. Now is a not a good time for a read-a-long, but I’m excited to read what all of you are thinking about the book!

  11. An annotated copy. How luxurious! My copy of Lolita was not(annotated): how I struggled with French… and frustration.

    I was very taken with the idea of Banned Books Week, but haven’t found time to read any. There is a Dr Seuss which has been challenged…

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