Fiction Advocate: “Nabokov Stole my Grandpa to Make Pale Fire”

IN “A SINGULARLY TASTELESS DEVICE,” Fiction Advocate Brian Hurley traces the genealogy of the Hurley clan back to a character in Nabokov’s masterwork of misdirection, “Pale Fire.”

Earl Hurley had three sons (including my father Tom) who were called the Hurley boys. They were infamous in Lexington for their roughhousing ways. Nabokov would have met them in 1951, when he traveled from Cornell, where he was teaching, to Washington and Lee on a lecture tour.

What other clues did Nabokov plant in his story, to pique the suspicions of a young Brian Hurley?


  1. Sorry I thought maybe it was some thing to cast subtle doubt on your authority, but I didn’t want to do that right off the bat so I corrected it. It was too early in the morning to think of a better way.

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