Look inside: The Original of Laura
The Original of Laura is Vladimir Nabokov's final, incredible unfinished novel in fragments. Dr Philip Wild, a man of brilliance, wit, fortune and tremendous bulk, is used to suffering humiliations at the hands of his wife, the younger, slender, and rudely promiscuous Flora. But in a novel, a 'maddening masterpiece' documenting her infidelities, written by one of her lovers and given to the doctor, she appears as My Laura. Dishonoured, Wild still finds pleasure in life, by indulging in self-annihilation, beginning with the removal of his toes.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899-1977) was born in St Petersburg. He wrote his first literary works in Russian, but rose to international prominence as a masterly prose stylist for the novels he composed in English, most famously Lolita. Between 1923 and 1940 he published novels, short stories, plays, poems and translations in the Russian language and established himself as one of the most outstanding Russian émigré writers.
Dmitri Nabokov was Vladimir Nabokov's son.