Moby-Dick by Herman Melville

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 3/5 stars.

This is merely my opinion of the book and a review based on how much I enjoyed it. You can assume from the presence this disclaimer that I feel self-conscious attempting to critique such a renowned novel.

Moby-Dick is like the whale Moby Dick itself. Ubiquitous, colossal, grand in scope, you name it. There’s so much to learn from this book and so much to discover about life itself through reading it. It’s revered as a American classic for a reason – here’s one of the quotes I absolutely adored from the book:

“Be it said, that though I had felt such a strong repugnance to his smoking in the bed the night before, yet see how elastic our stiff prejudices grow when love once comes to bend them.” (Chapter 11, “Nightgown”)

Dang. Isn’t that beautiful? The theme of not judging one for their appearance and instead peering deeper into the depths of who they truly are… wow. There are a myriad of deep, thought-invoking themes in this book – so many that I could sit here and think of them for hours. Also, chapter 23 (“The Lee Shore”) of the novel particularly inspired me after listening to an amazing lecture about it given by my history teacher.

Unfortunately I doubt I would’ve been able to finish the book if it had not been assigned reading for school. Some parts I struggled to get through due to the sheer sluggishness of the plot, like chapter 32 (“Cetology”), in which Melville literally writes about whales. In detail. Lots of detail.

Overall I’ve learned many things from reading Moby-Dick thanks to my wonderful teachers. I’ll probably come back to it once I’m older and have a decent amount of time to invest in it… because this book takes up a lot of time. A lot of it.

Here is a snapshot of my annotations of "The Lee Shore." What can I say? It was a phenomonal chapter.

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8 Comments

Filed under 3 stars, Book Reviews, Books

8 responses to “Moby-Dick by Herman Melville

  1. Bookish Hobbit

    I loved chapters like that though, but I am a nut for whales in general so it would appeal to me.

    • I suppose, though I know this one girl who loves whales (and claims to be 1/16 whale) that admitted to not being able to get through the first chapter of the book. Moby-Dick isn’t only about whales, but about many things from social acceptance to Christianity to death. And the writing style of Melville is one of the most difficult I’ve ever read.

      But, who knows, maybe you will love Moby-Dick. I’d give it a shot. (:

  2. We’ll not only is this an awesome review but I learned a knew way of going about note taking when it comes to books that I will have to read for school. Thanks and thanks for all that.

  3. My copy of Wuthering Heights looks like that. I first read it when I was 16 for school. I still go back and read it occasionally now. Moby-Dick is still on my tbr though!

    • Gotta love Wuthering Heights – I read it this year as a sixteen-year-old too, though not for school. Tell me what you think of Moby-Dick once you get to it. (:

  4. I’ve heard a lot about Moby-Dick but I haven’t gotten around reading it as yet though I skimmed a bit in the library and it looked well … rather a bit boring but I think I should’ve learned my lessons of first impressions by now so I’m going to give it a chance:)

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