"[An] entertaining companion to Moby-Dick." --Publishers Weekly
, selected as a "Pick of the Week"
"Delving beneath the huge cultural shadows cast by Melville's work, Cotkin reveals how many great writers, including Faulkner, Auden, and Masefield, have found inspiration in Melville's novel. Cotkin also scrutinizes cinematic and television adaptions of Melville's book, from the John Barrymore film, The Sea Beast
, in 1926 to the Star Trek
fantasy, The Wrath of Khan
, in 1982. Even the playful treatment given Moby-Dick
themes in Peanuts
cartoons receives scrutiny! The 135 chapters may drift about as chaotically as the flotsam left when the Great Whale smashes the Pequod
, but this flotsam has been pried from the depths, and it will thrill Melvilleans." --Booklist
"The book works so well because it is both serious and seriously entertaining...this new companion is as affable as it is smart." --The Boston Globe
"This is one grand intellectual adventure--an adventure in reading that parallels Ishmael's own astonishing journey. Moby-Dick
is, of course, the masterpiece at the center of American Literature. It's a gigantic whale of a novel, and George Cotkin has done a marvelous job of bringing its many glittering aspects before us. I can't imagine a more timely, entertaining, or--indeed--illuminating book." --Jay Parini, author of The Passages of H.M.: A Novel of Herman Melville
is a pleasure to read and the truest portrait of Moby-Dick
in American life and letters yet produced." --David Dowling, author of Chasing the White Whale: The Moby-Dick Marathon; or What Melville Means Today
About the Author
is Professor of History at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.