This is the last of the five-part series "50 Writers Nabokov Loved." The source of this information is Nabokov's own Strong Opinions. Missed the previous posts? Here's Part One, Part Two, Part Three, and Part Four. Now for the final ten!
41. Aleksey Tolstoy: Nabokov wrote of him, "A writer of some talent with two or three science fiction stories or novels which are memorable."
42. Leo Tolstoy: Nabokov read Tolstoy's complete works between the ages of 14 and 15. He called the great Russian writer a genius, saying, "Nobody takes his utilitarian moralism seriously... [Anna Karenina is] the supreme masterpiece of 19th century literature. Incomparable prose artistry... The Death of Ivan Ilyich is a close second."
43. Ivan Turgenev: "Talent," Nabokov wrote of him, "but not genius."
44. Fyodor Tyutchev: "A great lyrical poet."
45. John Updike: "By far one of the finest artists of recent years," Nabokov said of Updike. "Like so many of his stories that it is difficult to choose one... 'The Happiest I've Been' is a particular favorite."
46. Paul Verlaine: "A favorite between the ages of 10 and 15, and thereafter."
47. H. G. Wells: "A great artist, my favorite writer when I was a boy," Nabokov wrote of Wells. "His sociological cogitations can be safely ignored, but is romances and fantasies are superb. A far greater artist than Conrad. A writer for whom I have the deepest admiration." Nabokov wrote further that The Passionate Friends, Anne Veronica, The Time Machine, and The Country of the Blind were "better than anything any of Wells' contemporaries would produce. The Invisible Man, The War of the Worlds, and The First Men on the Moon, were for Nabokov "especially good."
48. Richard Wilbur: Nabokov called "Complaint" a "piece of great poetry."
49. Nikolai Zabolotsky: Nabokov said he was "enormously gifted."
50. Mikhail Zoshchenko: Nabokov called his work "some absolutely first-rate fiction."
And there you have it! Fifty writers Nabokov at least liked, if not loved. Happy reading!