Pale Fire is a book by Vladimir Nabokov split between a poem by the fictional John Shade and commentary by the fictional academic and friend of Shade, Charles Kinbote. The poem is largely autobiographical and Kinbote's commentary describes more about Shade and his relationship with Kinbote than about the poem itself. Into his commentary, Kinbote weaves several stories about the king of Zembla, who escaped and was killed, hinting that Shade, who was murdered, was actually the king.

Summary of Pale Fire by Vladimir Nabokov

Below is a list of Pale Fire Cliff Notes and Pale Fire SparkNotes. Not looking for a Pale Fire summary? Search above for 5000 other chapter summaries, curated from popular sites like SparkNotes and Cliff Notes.

Pale Fire Chapter Summaries (Free)

1Pink Monkey

Review: Their chapter summaries aren't as good as other providers, but PinkMonkey often has interesting insights that aren't mentioned elsewhere on the Internet. For example, they go over literary elements (like setting, conflict, and mood), compare and contrast, and symbolism/motifs. It's a good site if you want to find a unique fact or angle that other students don't know about.


Review: You won't get any frills with GradeSaver -- just the content you expect. Their study guides include a full plot summary, themes and character analysis, study questions, and the e-text of the book. One hidden gem is their collection of literature essays, but you'll have to pay for it.

3Novel Guide

Review: This provider offers quality content and all of the sections you'd expect in a study guide, like quotes, chapter by chapter summary, theme analysis, author biography, and even metaphor analysis. However, the main downside is that the website is not well-formatted and the text can be difficult to read.