There are plenty of books that might convince you of your mediocrity as a writer, but none so much as Lolita. Reading it is like taking a master class in flowery prose, a lengthy linguistic lesson in additive adjectives. Of all the quotes from this story, the above (emphasis mine) is the one that puzzles me the most. I cannot figure out why the words “in that order” are in this sentence. Is it a dig? Is it just how she appeared to him coming down the stairs?
If I were being tested on it, I’d say the latter–as in, he was describing each detail as he encountered it. But I prefer the dig interpretation–as in, these are the remarkable descriptions of Charlotte Haze in particular order, her face coming last.
I’m probably overthinking it, but I love this line.