Ker's Reviews > Herman Melville: Moby Dick, Billy Budd and Other Writings

Herman Melville by Herman Melville
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's review
Jun 03, 2008

really liked it
Read in June, 2004

While parts of this were a slog--does anyone love the Cetology chapter?--I found Melville's construct fascinating. He seems to try on various writing styles throughout the book--from research and reportage to free-form stream of consciousness. It's amazing to me that even today, this novel still feels experimental and daring.

I was also amazed by Melville's descriptions of the cultural diversity of the sea ports and whaling crews at that time... whatever sense of openness and diversity we have now seems pitiful compared to the Melville's eastern seaports.

(more on both of these points, w/ quotes to come)

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