One night, a suspicious wife leaves her home in Florida to trace her husband’s footsteps across Havana, Cuba. The only problem is, Richard is dead.
Divided into historical eras, he introduces each piece with contextual information — leading ideas of the time, societal understandings, and philosophies. Then the writings are left to stand on their own.
In Blood & Ivy, Collins uncovers a hasty murder in Harvard’s medical school, a gaslit story for the resurrectionists in a Robert Louis Stevenson book.
In the Norse gods’ kingdom of Asgard, Thor accidentally throws a thunderbolt at his henhouse. He zaps an egg who eventually hatches into a different sort of chicken. Young Brunhilde and the Thundercluck are called to save Asgard from Gorman Bones, an evil chef.
Perhaps there was something about knowing the horrible crime had been committed, was already out in the real world, that he wasn’t inventing it, that allowed Nabokov to finally put his novel into a cohesive form.