The idle ramblings of a Jack of some trades, Master of none

May 3, 2016

Vladimir to Véra

All through those 1926 letters, [Nabokov] remembers to tell Véra what he has eaten — it’s slightly comic, because Vladimir is not an adventurous eater, and it becomes a litany of good plain food — ‘lamb chop, and apple mousse… meatballs with carrot and asparagus, a plain brothy soup, and a little plate of perfectly ripe cherries… broth with dumplings, meat roast with asparagus and coffee and cake… chicken with rice and rhubarb compote’. The point is that Véra will be interested, because it’s her man eating his meals far away from her; we are interested because the writer evokes and specifies.
Philip Hensher, "Nabokov’s love letters are some of the most rapturous ever written", The Spectator, Sep 27, 2014.


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