Saturday, September 7, 2013

Moby Dick - Herman Melville

Title: Moby Dick, or The Whale
Author: Herman Melville
Pages: 640
Published: 1998 (originally published 1851)
Challenges: Back to the Classics, Chunkster, The Classics Club, Embarrassment of Riches, Off the Shelf
Genre: Adventure, Classics, Fiction, Literature
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Source: Personal


Description: Over a century and a half after its publication, Moby-Dick still stands as an indisputable literary classic. It is the story of an eerily compelling madman pursuing an unholy war against a creature as vast and dangerous and unknowable as the sea itself. But more than just a novel of adventure, more than an encyclopedia of whaling lore and legend, Moby-Dick is a haunting, mesmerizing, and important social commentary populated with several of the most unforgettable and enduring characters in literature. Written with wonderfully redemptive humor, Moby-Dick is a profound and timeless inquiry into character, faith, and the nature of perception. (via Goodreads)

Thoughts: I first became intrigued with the book on TLC's Great Book series and after reading it, I have very mixed thoughts about this book.  While I enjoyed the narrative of the journey of the Pequod and the story of the men on the ship, the musings of Melville almost made me want to not finish the book.  I understand why Melville may have gone on and on about the physiology of the whale (which he does spend several chapters talking about the physiology of the sperm whale), but there really is no need to spend time philosophizing about things that have nothing to do with the story and the only reason that I finished the book was due to my interest in the narrative, which seems to be very little of the story.

Bottom line: If you have an interest classics and really like reading classics, I would probably put this on your TBR list.  Basically I wouldn't rush out to read it and it probably is a book that you can skip, if you have no interest in the book. And its probably something that I won't reread, but one never knows.  Sure its an interesting book in that you can see elements of the modern novel in this book, in fact its referred to as the first modern novel, even though its put in the classic category. Recommended.

Rating: 3/5

Pages for 2013: 14058
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