Labeled variously a realistic story of whaling, a romance of unusual adventure and eccentric characters, a symbolic allegory, and a drama of heroic conflict, Moby Dick is first and foremost a great story. It has both the humor and poignancy of a simple sea ballad, as well as the depth and universality of a grand odyssey.
"I Had No Idea Melville Was So Funny"
Ishmael, a sailor looking for his next adventure, and his friend who happens to be a former prince, sign up to join a whaling ship in Nantucket. The morning before they set sail on their voyage, many ominous signs of what the pair's fate may be are seen and heard through sermon and prophecy as the two friends ignore the warnings and make their way to the docks. Soon into the trip, the one-legged Captain Ahab announces that the whaling adventure is really a hunt for one very specific large, white sperm whale.
"One of the ALL TIME greats"
"Call me Ishmael." Thus starts the greatest American novel. Melville said himself that he wanted to write "a mighty book about a mighty theme" and so he did. It is a story of one man's obsessive revenge-journey against the white whale, Moby-Dick, who injured him in an earlier meeting. Woven into the story of the last journey of The Pequod is a mesh of philosophy, rumination, religion, history, and a mass of information about whaling through the ages.
"Excellent, EXCELLENT reading!"
Moby-Dick is widely considered to be the Great American Novel and a treasure of world literature. The story details the adventures of the wandering sailor Ishmael and his voyage on the whale ship Pequod, commanded by Captain Ahab. Ishmael soon learns that Ahab seeks one specific whale: Moby Dick, a ferocious, enigmatic white sperm whale. In a previous encounter, the whale destroyed Ahab's boat and bit off his leg. And Ahab intends to take revenge.
"Heed the advice"
Evoking Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, this is a story of interlocking tales from a group of steamboat passengers traveling down the Mississippi toward New Orleans. Aboard the Fidèle can be found all manner of con men, from those selling stock in failing companies and herbal cure-all "medicines" to those who are raising money for supposed charitable organizations and those who simply ask for money outright.
The life of a Scrivener can be a dull one. After all, your entire occupation has to do with the handwritten copying of law documents. But when Bartleby arrives, he turns the office upside down with the enigmatic phrase: “I prefer not to.”
""I would prefer not to REVIEW""
Written some 40 years after Moby Dick, Melville's Billy Budd is a moving tale of good versus evil. Set aboard a British navy ship at the end of the eighteenth century, a young, innocent sailor's charm and good nature put the men around him at ease. Ship life agreed with Billy. He made friends quickly and was well liked, which infuriated John Claggart, the ship's cold-blooded superior officer.
"A good reading of a classic story"
The outcast youth Ishmael, succumbing to wanderlust during a dreary New England autumn, signs up for passage aboard a whaling ship. The Pequod sails under the command of the one-legged Captain Ahab, who has set himself on a monomaniacal quest to capture the cunning white whale that robbed him of his leg: Moby-Dick. Capturing life on the sea with robust realism, Melville details the adventures of the colorful crew aboard the ship as Ahab pursues his crusade of revenge, heedless of all cost.
"The Narrator Brings the Book Alive"
In the dark depths of the bottomless sea dwells a white demon, taking shape as the Leviathan known as Moby Dick. One year ago, the malefic brute crunched off the leg of the ungodly Captain Ahab, who now swears revenge. So runs the epic tale of Moby Dick, the supernal work of Herman Melville. In this unabridged production, you will walk with the young sailor Ishmael through the fires of life on a whaling vessel.
"Can't argue with a classic"
In 1797, young Billy Budd is impressed into naval service. It is a perilous time for a British Royal Navy still reeling from mutinies and marauding French ships. When Billy is forcibly transferred to HMS Bellipotent, he evokes the wrath of John Claggart, the ship's master-at-arms. Claggart falsely accuses Billy of conspiracy to mutiny, a charge that will have a profound effect on the fates of both seamen.
"H2O here isn't wide, but deep w/ strong currents"
"Solid narration of a timeless classic"
This is the epic sea adventure, a harrowing tale of slavery and revolt aboard a Spanish ship, is often regarded as Melville's finest short story. The balance of forces is complete, the atmosphere one of epic significance, the light cast upon the hero intense to the highest degree, the realization of the human soul profound, and the telling of the story orchestrated like a great symphony.
"Timeless Meditation on Racial Hatred"
"Bartleby, the Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street" is a short story by the American writer Herman Melville, first serialized anonymously in two parts in the November and December 1853 issues of Putnam's Magazine, and reprinted with minor textual alterations in his The Piazza Tales in 1856. A Wall Street lawyer hires a new clerk who, after an initial bout of hard work, refuses to make copy and any other task required of him, with the words "I would prefer not to".
This classic story of a New York lawyer and his oddly rebellious clerk is as relevant today as when it was first published in 1853. Herman Melville brings us into a small Wall Street law office and introduces us to the lawyer and his quirky staff, the quirkiest of whom is poor, quiet Bartleby, whose increasing refusals to participate in office procedures lead to increasingly bewildering and tragic consequences.
"Beautiful narration of this classic tale"
On one level...Melville’s tale is an historical adventure telling the story of life aboard ship shortly after the mutiny at Spithead in 1797. Billy is taken from a homeward bound merchantman to serve on the ‘Seventy Four’ HMS Indomitable. He falls foul of Claggart, the ‘Master at Arms’, and the final confrontation results in death. Billy becomes an unwilling martyr - what passes for justice must be implemented because of the rebellious climate of the time.
Captain Delano is approached on the open sea by a battered-looking ship led by Captain Benito Cereno. Cereno, always accompanied by his personal slave, Babo, explains that his crew was transporting a group of slaves from Africa when their ship was caught and damaged in severe weather. He is polite but always timid and requests supplies for his ship's remaining journey. Captain Delano agrees to help but begins to notice the strange social interactions and atmosphere of Cereno's crew and the slaves.
Ishmael, the narrator, tells of the adventures of Captain Ahab in his relentless quest to seek revenge on the white whale that bit off his leg. Full of allegory and symbolism, Moby Dick is an epic tragedy of tremendous dramatic power and narrative drive. This large-scale adaptation, recorded in America, skilfully reproduces the unique mixture of adventure, myth, history, and philosophy in Melville's epic tale.
"Good but I don't understand why I can't jump"
Herman Melville’s tale of corporate discontent, Bartleby, the Scrivener, tells the story of a quiet, hardworking legal copyist who works in an office in the Wall Street area of New York City. The business where he works handles the official financial paperwork of wealthy men. One day, Bartleby’s employer requests he proofread one of the documents he has copied. Bartleby declines the assignment with the inscrutable “I would prefer not,” the first of what will become many refusals.
"Very strange, very haunting"
Herman Melville is now seen as one of the great figures in American literature, a man who expanded the role of the novel and gave new and complex depths to the meaning of a story. His best work uses the form of the novel or the story as a means of carrying and discussing concerns about the nature of humanity, the role of God, and a sometimes satiric, sometimes bitter, examination of colonialism and capitalism.
"Amusing and unusual"
In Manhattan, an elderly lawyer's business is growing. Having two scriveners in his employ, the lawyer advertises for a third to meet demand. Enter Bartleby, a glum albeit quality scrivener. However, the lawyer quickly discovers that something is off with his new employee. When asked to perform any duties outside of writing, Bartleby responds with a canned "I would prefer not to." Soon Bartleby is living at the office and performing less and less at work.