Friday, February 15, 2013

Nabokov Book Covers

I've seen these wonderful Nabokov books on shop shelves for many years now, but each time I see them, I can't resist the temptation to pick them up and buy them all.

What I learned today was that these covers were inspired by Nabokov's love of collecting butterflies.
(Aha! Of course! Why didn't it occur to me before?)

Here's what John Gall of Vintage books said:

"Nabokov was a passionate butterfly collector, a theme that has cropped up on some of his past covers. My idea was also a play on this concept. Each cover consists of a photograph of a specimen box, the kind used by collectors like Nabokov to display insects. Each box would be filled with paper, ephemera, and insect pins, selected to somehow evoke the book's content."

He ended up asking a group of designers to help create each box - which is why each cover looks so completely original, so different from the next.


See more here.


  1. What a coincidence. Just this morning I read this Nabokov quote:

    It is astounding how little the ordinary person notices butterflies.

    Katherine Larson quotes him in her book of poetry, Radial Symmetry.

    1. Thanks for sharing that quote, Denise. I'm going to have to check out Katherine Larson. You seem to really like her!

    2. Well, all I know of her is this one book of poems, but I do like the book.


The exchange of ideas is a key part of the human experience, don't you think? I would love to hear from you.

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