In class we talked about how nothing actually happens in Mary. I think that a plot, more than just existing, is quite well developed in this book. In fact, there are two distinct plots; there are the events that happen in Berlin and the reminisces of what took place in Russia years ago. I found that part of what made this book so readable and compelling were the dual plot lines.
The part of the story that takes place in Berlin is interesting because it follows the struggle of someone superfluous as they try to find a goal or direction. While the reader doesn't perceive very much development of Ganin's character over the course of the book, Ganin goes from stagnating to moving forward in his life. This is an interesting development on the idea of the superfluous man theme that has plagued us since the beginning of this course. Is someone superfluous if their life has a direction? Ganin provides little or nothing to society, yet at the end of the book he has a focus and direction.
The plot that grabbed me the most was the one that focused on the idea of first love. The development of Ganin's love with Mary was a good story for me. There was exposition, conflict, rising action, a climax, and no resolution until the very last page of the book. I really enjoyed that I had no idea how the book would end even though I was on the second to last page. By having two separate plots, Nabokov broadens the amount of people that could really connect to the book. The parts where Ganin is reminiscing about his life made me nostalgic. I thought about stuff that I haven't thought about in a long time when I was reading that part of the story.
Anyway, I thought it was a really good book. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Also, sorry this is two days late. I sort of forgot.