Category Archives: Bookish Talk

Moby Dick Monday: January 11, 2010 (Week 9)

Welcome to Moby Dick Monday! This is where we read four pages a day and then post about what we’ve read. Consider it an adventure of sorts!

My Story Re-Cap:

This week’s reading took me through Chapter 52. Ahab is beginning to wonder how he’ll keep the crew motivated through such a long voyage. He realizes, that without a reward of some kind, the crew could turn on him and decide not to obey his commands at all. This thought disturbs him, but he tucks it away to think about later.

While Ishmael and Queequeg spend a lazy afternoon working on maps, Tashtego calls from above with a “There she blows!” The crew snaps to attention, only to be startled by the appearance of five strangers. These strangers, or “phantoms” as Ishmael takes to calling them, is headed up by someone named Fedallah. The crew, including these five strangers, lowers the boats and sets out after Moby Dick. However, their chase proves fruitless and they return to the ship.

A second sighting a few days later has them all in the water again, but this time, Ishmael’s boat capsizes and he fights the sea to get back on board. After a struggle, Ishmael returns to the ship and asks the others if being thrown into the ocean like this and nearly losing your life is something that he should expect regularly. After getting confirmation of this, he decides that the additional strangers, probably couldn’t hurt as there is power in numbers.

My Rambling Thoughts:

At 256 pages in, Ahab is still a mystery, but I’m learning more about him as each week passes. He is a brooding type. I suspect, highly intelligent too but that has not been told to us in so many words. He quietly observes the deck, his crew and the ocean surrounding them. His quest to find Moby Dick is of course personal, but I am guessing there’s even more to that story than we’ve been told thus far. I’m enjoying Ishmael’s slow realization of what he’s gotten himself into.

I’m glad that these chapters are short. If they were longer, I think the story would be lost in the words. Melville takes such care to describe things a certain way, but the sentences are a bit choppy. This is one of those books where I need complete silence in order to read it. The background noise of the TV or kids forces me to re-read chapters at a time. It really requires quite a bit of focus. However, I am almost at the halfway mark and that’s quite an accomplishment! I’ve never been able to get this far before. I believe I’m going to make it through this.

Reading Along With Me:

Jill/Softdrink of Fizzy Thoughts
Jill of RhapsodyinBooks
Dar of Peeking Between the Pages
Eva of A Striped Armchair
Wisteria from Bookworm’s Dinner
Gavin from Page247
Claire from kiss a cloud
Sandra from Fresh Ink Books

For those that are participating, share your post links in comments. What do you think so far? Oh, and if anyone wants to join us just leave me a message below.

The Sunday Salon: What Happened to Winter?

Today has been incredibly gorgeous! Blue skies, warm temps, a slight breeze…just wonderful. I spent a good chunk of the day outside on the patio with a book in my hand. I spent another chunk looking for my daughter’s lost scarf (sentimental value and all) which included digging around in an Office Max dumpster because the manager, although he admitted to finding it, refused to open a drawer to see where his employee put it. Needless to say, we are “scarfless” and could not find it. My daughter is crushed.

Oh, you’d like to know what I’ve been reading? Well, I am still reading The Things That Keep Us Here, but I have some issues with it. I was looking forward to reading it, but so many things irk me about it. Perhaps it’s because I got a really early ARC of it? I’m about halfway through so hopefully it will redeem itself. Hopefully.

Right now, I am waiting for our Chinese food FEAST to arrive. As you know, I am Game On‘ing it and this is a meal off. I cannot wait for it to get here. I am so darn hungry.