Or, The Whale

Book - 1950
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Looking for adventure and a new life, Ishmael, the story's narrator, decides to find work on a whaling boat. On arriving at the Massachusetts harbour to begin his search, the only bed available is already half occupied by a "cannibal" named Queequeg. Although Queequeg has limited English, a friendship forms and the two men sign up for work together aboard the Pequod under the infamous Captain Ahab. Consumed by an insane rage, Captain Ahab has but one purpose in life-- revenge on the great white whale who maimed and disfigured him.
Publisher: New York : Dutton, 1950
Characteristics: xxxv, 664 p. ; 19 cm


From Library Staff

The tale of Captain Ahab and his quest to avenge the whale who severed his leg below the knee.

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Aug 04, 2017

Purposely prepare yourself, before reading Moby Dick for the first time.
Try to distance yourself from it's earning a classic status over it's history.
It has nothing to do with modern proclivities or sensibilities and therefore, can not be assessed within any contemporary context.
It is a remarkably-vivid window into the Human Nature of a bygone era.
For your Soul to grasp the magnitude of the tale, for your Heart to exalt in its passions,
allow your imagination all the capacity it requires, to fully immerse you in the story's time and place.
How much your expectations are exceeded, is proportional to how many you have in the first place.
Read this book, on it's own terms.
You'll better understand the meaning of Life..... on YOUR own terms.

Apr 25, 2017

The masterpiece of all literature everything is in there . A metaphysical work of art. ASTONISHING. I read it in the eight grade and still read it now. An excellent beach book or sitting in front of the fire in my cabin on the woods . 420

Sep 08, 2016

This book is an epic tale, a masterpiece, and a revered piece of literature as a timeless classic for a reason. Melville commands your attention instantly, and although for some this may be a difficult read that requires pages to be read multiple times, this is a book that you will never regret reading. It is remarkably poetic and humorous for a book about a whale, and the real beauty of the book is that it really isn’t about a whale at all – it is about the exploration of the human condition, in every aspect you could explore. You cannot go into this book reading it just to read it, as many do with classics; this book deserves respect in its eloquence and the ability that Melville has to draw so many parallels between what it means to be a human and whales. - @FalcoLombardi of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

Jul 12, 2016

I've tried to get through this over years...finally relied on Nathaniel Philbrick to explain it to me. What a difference.

EnchantedShyRose Mar 06, 2016

Moby Dick lol

BookMatchLibrarian Jan 26, 2016

Melville's legendary tale of an obsessed sea captain and his pursuit of the monstrous whale that bit off his leg

Jan 13, 2016

Good read, But it captures whales as monsters. I know that's not true, plus I'm not too fond of the killing of these intelligent, socially complex beautiful creatures.

Jun 29, 2015


Jun 29, 2015

yeah boring..but to be fair only read a few pages..but did not have the inclination to continue

Aug 12, 2014

This turned out to be my summer challenge. I could have stopped reading it at a dozen different places but I was determined to finish it and by the end I developed a humble respect for this book. The beginning was quite good and the end was okay but in between are hundreds of pages that pay homage to the whale and the whaling industry. It reads more like a manual on whaling. However buried deep in all that monotony were some really beautiful passages that were almost like a psalm. This is not a book you read for entertainment. Be prepared to do battle with it if you decide to pick it up.

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ellensix Oct 09, 2015

"I know not all that may be coming, but be it what it will, I'll go to it laughing."
—Herman Melville, Moby-Dick

Jun 29, 2014

"Call me Ishmael"

Jan 02, 2014

The more so, I say, because truly to enjoy bodily warmth, some small part of you must be cold, for there is no quality in this world that is not what it is merely by contrast. Nothing exists in itself.

Jan 02, 2014

Better sleep with a sober cannibal than a drunken Christian.

Jan 02, 2014

"Yes, as every one knows, meditation and water are wedded for ever."

Jan 02, 2014

"Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people’s hats off—then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can."

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 28, 2012


SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 28, 2012


SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 28, 2012


SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 28, 2012


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Nov 07, 2014

Ishmael goes whaling with a friend but the Captain, Ahab, wants revenge on the whale Moby Dick for eating his leg. They kill lots of whales, meet many crazy people who are prophetic, meet other ships, go through tragedies, sail around, and end up all dying against Moby Dick except for Ishmael.

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 28, 2012

History of Moby Dick


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