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Moby Dick or Why Not Every Classic is Good for You — 10 Comments

  1. So many painful pages…..Moby Dick is a beast of a book. I found myself skipping over pages and just being plain angry that there was so much STILL left to read. In the end, I was glad I crossed it off the list but can’t say that I was really moved by it. In spite of all that, Heart of Darkness is probably the worst book I’ve ever read. If you haven’t read it….don’t ,lol.

  2. Seriously, if your review honestly states all that you got from reading Moby Dick, I’m sorry.
    I waited until my early sixties to read this book, and I wish I had read it much earlier in life.
    I will read it again, to gain understanding of so much that I know I missed in the first reading.
    This book isn’t just an American epic novel. It is much larger than that. From misplaced blame and misdirected rage, to an inability to understand, or even refusal to acknowledge that someone or something else, human, animal or nation state has the right not to dominated by the will of an obsessive, fanatical force, and then again to an almost divine, poetic prose, this book does more to encourage analysis of the world around us than any book I’ve read previously.
    No it is not perfect. But is much more important than most of the literary tripe that has come after.

  3. When I read Moby Dick, I went in thinking it would be a book about the destructive power of obsession. But I thought the obsessive was going to be Ahab, and realized halfway through it was “Ishmael” (or whatever his real name was). All that stuff about whale blubber was the monomaniacal raving of someone who couldn’t stop thinking about whaling.

  4. Moby Dick was so hard to read, I finished it only to be able to say I finished it because I did not want to have to go back and try again!

  5. I was supposed to read Moby Dick for AP English my Senior year, but I never read it. I couldn’t, I don’t know why I had a hard time with the books chosen that year. I am not sure if I read any of them. :/

  6. Yes!!!! You are so correct. It was not that the writing was bad. I enjoyed the writing and my vocabulary was improved, but I kept waiting for the point, the good part and it was only eight pages. The last eight pages!

  7. haha I am reading Moby Dick now and I concur. I still have about 120 painful, painful pages to go. While the writing is good (call me weird but I enjoy 19th century prose), the plot is practically non-existent. You could probably shave off a good 200 pages and tell the same story. Melville goes off on these wild tangents that, while well written, have absolutely nothing to do with the story. Sometimes I wonder how books like this become so well regarded when today if you did something similar they’d never sell.

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