Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Moby Dick Big Read: an audio chapter a day

Moby-DickMoby-Dick by Herman Melville

I swore I'd never read this book after hearing about how much time was spent on the technical aspects of whale species differentiation and whaling itself. However, the Moby Dick Big Read came along to change my mind enough to gingerly essay the first chapter, wonderfully read by Tilda Swinton. I'll continue and see what makes this book so essential to so many. I'm also intrigued by their mixture of celebrities and unknown readers as an ultra-LibriVox concept in providing free content that may be read by many narrators.

What is the Moby-Dick Big Read?
Moby-Dick is the great American novel. But it is also the great unread American novel. Sprawling, magnificent, deliriously digressive, it stands over and above all other works of fiction...

...the Moby-Dick Big Read: an online version of Melville’s magisterial tome: each of its 135 chapters read out aloud, by a mixture of the celebrated and the unknown, to be broadcast online in a sequence of 135 downloads, publicly and freely accessible.
I have to admit that the "great unread American novel" hit me where I live since I have so often urged others to read Uncle Tom's Cabin for the very same reason. The above is just a fraction of what they say about the novel so go there for details.


  1. Julie, I posted a comment to this at your patheos site a few days ago and it didn't go through. I've had trouble there. My comments don't take at your blog. Perhaps they go into a spam?

    Anyway, what I wanted to say is that I'm currently reading Moby right now. So that's great. It's not my first time reading it. I hope you do read it. It's not a woman's story, that's for sure. But if you could just sit back and appreciate the wonderful prose. Melville is such a fine stylist and he exceeded himself in Moby Dick. The story line is actually simple, but what makes this such a great novel (besides the prose style) is the symbolic complexity that pulls together a theological world view. The novel surprisingly is actually a theological discourse. I don't usually find Cliff Notes or the like to be that helpful, but the Cliff Notes on Moby Dick are outstanding. They really give you a chapter by chapter understanding to what Melville is getting at.

  2. Hi Manny ... I don't know why but your comments always go into spam at Blogger. I now check it every day in case you've commented because I can't find an override to keep you in regular comments. :-)

    On Patheos we had such a problem with spam that all comments have to be approved before they are shown. Usually whoever is posting checks the comments and approves all that aren't spam. I'll look around ... sorry for the trouble! :-)

    I actually like Cliff Notes for classics because I know I am likely to miss a lot of older classical and symbolic references. I wouldn't have thought of them for this book though so thank you for the idea! :-)