Victoria's Reviews > The Whale: In Search of the Giants of the Sea

The Whale by Philip Hoare
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's review
Jan 28, 2014

really liked it
bookshelves: history, nature, non-fiction, ocean
Read from January 22 to 26, 2010 — I own a copy , read count: 1

Like most people, I have loved whales since I was a kid (though I have always been more fascinated by sharks...). This book's title, however, was a bit misleading... there were a lot of fascinating facts about whales, but it was honestly more about whaling than the whales themselves. Which made it a pretty depressing (albeit very interesting) read, all in all. And throughout, the book constantly references Moby-Dick: or, The Whale, and the life of Herman Melville. So, if you are very familiar with that piece of classic literature, I think you will enjoy this more than someone who only has limited knowledge of the book.
My only real complaint was that I would have liked even more information about the whales themselves, their lives and their habits, and a little less about the cruelty and utter destruction brought upon them by mankind. Although, this book managed to give a balanced look into whaling, and did not come off as the Sea Shepard's, or another eco-terrorist group's, manual. There certainly were a lot of facts that any eco-group could use, however. In handling this sensitive topic of history, this author certainly did a wonderfully detailed job. Well-written (despite a few rather abrupt transitions), and well-researched, the photos and drawings added a lot to this good, but on the whole, rather depressing look into the history of humanity's relationship with the whale.
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01/25/2010 page 154

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