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Herman Melville

Herman Melville was a novelist, poet and short story writer who was born under the name Herman Melvill on 1 August, 1819. He worked during the American Renaissance period and is best known for his whaling novel, Moby-Dick.

Containing one of the best opening lines of all time – ‘Call me Ishmael’ – the novel was actually released to mixed reviews and following the lack of commercial acclaim, Melville soon turned his attention to poetry.


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Herman Melville Books

  • Moby Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: BOOCP
    Paperback
    With an Introduction and Notes by David Herd, Lecturer in English and American Literature at the University of Kent at Canterbury and co-editor of `Poetry Review'. Moby Dick is the story of Captain Ahab's quest to avenge the whale that `reaped' his leg. The quest is an obsession and the novel is a diabolical study of how a man becomes a fanatic. But it is also a hymn to democracy. Bent as the crew is on Ahab's appalling crusade, it is equally the image of a co-operative community at work: all hands dependent on all hands, each individual responsible for the security of each. Among the crew is Ishmael, the novel's narrator, ordinary sailor, and extraordinary reader. Digressive, allusive, vulgar, transcendent, the story Ishmael tells is above all an education: in the practice of whaling, in the art of writing. Expanding to equal his `mighty theme' - not only the whale but all things sublime - Melville breathes in the world's great literature. Moby Dick is the greatest novel ever written by an American.
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  • Moby-Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: BFORT
    Hardback
    Call me Ishmael. These three famous words begin one of the most epic novels ever written, a tale of one obsessed captain, his doomed crew and an elusive white whale named Moby-Dick. The massive original, however, can be very hard for young readers to navigate. This beautifully abridged and adventure-filled version will thrill children and whet their appetite for the complete work - when they are ready to tackle it.
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  • Moby Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: BCKNY
    Paperback
    HarperCollins is proud to present its incredible range of best-loved, essential classics. 'Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee...' Few literary masterpieces cast quite as awesome a shadow as Herman Melville's Moby Dick. Captain Ahab's quest for the white whale is a timeless epic - a thrilling tale of vengeance and obsession, and a searing parable about humanity lost in a universe of moral ambiguity. Inspired by true events, Moby Dick is a work of astonishing psychological depth. It is perhaps the greatest sea story ever told and one of the great classics of literature.
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  • Moby Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: CBGCL
    Hardback
    American writer Herman Melville wrote Moby Dick in 1851 but it took decades before finally it was regarded as a great American novel, and worthy of its place amongst the greatest texts of humankind. It recounts the obsessive quest of Ahab, captain of a whaling ship seeking vengeance on Moby Dick, the white whale that had bitten off Ahab's leg on a previous voyage. FLAME TREE's Great Works That Shape Our World is a new series of definitive books drawing on ancient, medieval and modern writing. Offering a fund of essential knowledge, and spell-binding stories it satisfies every facet of human interest: scientific, philosophical, sociological, romantic, dramatic and mysterious. From the ancient wisdom of the Mahabharata to the curious power of Don Quixote, Boccaccio's Decameron and Melville's classic Moby Dick, from the scientific wonders of Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein to the great thinkers of Western and Asian philosophy. Created to entertain, inform and enrich, the new series brings infinite variety to refresh the mind, presented in beautiful editions for the modern market. Each book features a new, accessible introduction, specially written for these editions, placing the book in context both as part of the new series, and highlighting its special contribution to the advancement of human understanding; they examine the significance of each work, their impact at time of publication, and their influence today.
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  • Moby Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: BCQRD
    Paperback
    Among the crew is Ishmael, the novel's narrator, ordinary sailor, and extraordinary reader. Digressive, allusive, vulgar, transcendent, the story Ishmael tells is above all an education: in the practice of whaling, in the art of writing. Expanding to equal his 'mighty theme' - not only the whale but all things sublime - Melville breathes in the world's great literature. Moby Dick is the greatest novel ever written by an American.
    • £4.79
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  • The Maldive Shark

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AZVDU
    Paperback
    'No voice, no low, no howl is heard; the chief sound of life here is a hiss.' Stories and poems by Herman Melville drawn from his years at sea Introducing Little Black Classics: 80 books for Penguin's 80th birthday. Little Black Classics celebrate the huge range and diversity of Penguin Classics, with books from around the world and across many centuries. They take us from a balloon ride over Victorian London to a garden of blossom in Japan, from Tierra del Fuego to 16th century California and the Russian steppe. Here are stories lyrical and savage; poems epic and intimate; essays satirical and inspirational; and ideas that have shaped the lives of millions. Herman Melville (1819-1891). Melville's works available in Penguin Classics are Moby-Dick, Pierre, The Confidence-Man, Omoo, Redburn, Israel Potter and Billy Budd, Sailor and Other Stories.
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  • Collins Classics

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AYQCN
    Paperback
    Few literary masterpieces cast quite as awesome a shadow as Herman Melville's Moby Dick. Captain Ahab's quest for the white whale is a timeless epic - a thrilling tale of vengeance and obsession, and a searing parable about humanity lost in a universe of moral ambiguity. Inspired by true events, Moby Dick is a work of astonishing psychological depth. It is perhaps the greatest sea story ever told and one of the great classics of literature. 'Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale; to the last I grapple with thee; from hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee...'
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  • Moby Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AWRGO
    Paperback
    When the young Ishmael gets on board Captain Ahab's whaling ship, little does he suspect that the mission on which he is about to embark is the fulfilment of his master's obsessive desire for revenge on Moby Dick, a white whale who has already claimed countless human victims and destroyed many fleets. With some sinister crew members in their midst and the hazardous conditions of the sea to contend with, the expedition becomes increasingly dangerous the closer it gets to its quarry.One of the great American novels, if not the greatest, Moby Dick epically combines rip-roaring adventure, a meticulously realistic portrayal of the whaling trade and a profound philosophical disquisition on the nature of good and evil.ABOUT
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  • Moby-Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AVGMJ
    Hardback
    On board the whaling ship Pequod a crew of wise men and fools, renegades and seeming phantoms is hurled through treacherous seas by crazed Captain Ahab, a man hell-bent on hunting down the mythic White Whale. Melville transforms the little world of the whale ship into a crucible where mankind's fears, faith and frailties are pitted against a relentless fate. Teeming with ideas and imagery, and with its extraordinary intensity sustained by mischievous irony and moments of exquisite beauty, Moby-Dick is both a great American epic and a profoundly imaginative literary creation. This Macmillan Collector's Library edition features an afterword by Nigel Cliff. Designed to appeal to the booklover, Macmillan Collector's Library is a series of beautifully bound hardback gift editions of much loved classic titles. Bound in real cloth, printed on high quality paper, and featuring ribbon markers and gilt edges, Macmillan Collector's Library are books to love and treasure.
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  • Billy Budd, Bartleby, and Other Stories

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AUOBJ
    Paperback
    Though best-known for his epic masterpiece Moby-Dick, Herman Melville also left a body of short stories arguably unmatched in American fiction. In the sorrowful tragedy of Billy Budd,Sailor; the controlled rage of Benito Cereno; and the tantalizing enigma of Bartleby, the Scrivener; Melville reveals himself as a singular storyteller of tremendous range and compelling power. In these stories, Melville cuts to the heart of race, class, capitalism, and globalism in America, deftly navigating political and social issues that resonate as clearly in our time as they did in Melville's. Also including The Piazza Tales in full, this collection demonstrates why Melville stands not only among the greatest writers of the nineteenth century, but also as one of our greatest contemporaries. This Penguin Classics edition features the Reading Text of Billy Budd, Sailor, as edited from a genetic study of the manuscript by Harrison Hayford and Merton M. Sealts, Jr., and the authoritative Northwestern-Newberry text of The Piazza Tales.
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  • Moby Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AQYVJ
    Paperback
    Journey to the heart of the sea with this larger-than-life classic. Regarded as a Great American Novel, Moby Dick is the ultimate tale of seeking vengeance. Narrated by the crew member Ishmael, this epic whaling adventure follows the crew of the Pequod, as its captain, Ahab, descends deeper and deeper into madness on his quest to find and kill the white whale that maimed him. Beyond the surface--of ship life, whaling, and the hunt for the elusive Moby Dick--are allegorical references to life--and even the universe--in this masterpiece by Herman Melville. Complete and unabridged, this elegantly designed clothbound edition features an elastic closure and a new introduction by Christopher McBride.
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  • Moby-Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AHWXP
    Hardback
    • £15.89
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  • Moby-Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AGDFU
    Hardback
    Part of Penguin's beautiful hardback "Clothbound Classics" series, designed by the award-winning Coralie Bickford-Smith, these delectable and collectible editions are bound in high-quality colourful, tactile cloth with foil stamped into the design. In Herman Melville's "Moby-Dick", Captain Ahab is an eerily compelling madman who focuses his distilled hatred and suffering (and that of generations before him) into the pursuit of a creature as vast, dangerous and unknowable as the sea itself. More than just a novel of adventure, this is a haunting social commentary populated with some of the most enduring characters in literature. Written with wonderfully redemptive humour, "Moby Dick" is a profound and timeless inquiry into character, faith and the nature of perception.
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  • Moby-Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AEECN
    Paperback
    'The frail gunwales bent in, collapsed, and snapped, as both jaws, like an enormous shears, sliding further aft, bit the craft completely in twain...' "Moby-Dick" is one of the most expansive feats of imagination in the whole of literature: the mad, raging, Shakespearean tale of Captain Ahab's insane quest to kill a giant white whale that has taken his leg, and upon which he has sworn vengeance, at any cost. A creation unlike any other, this is an epic story of fatal monomania and the deepest dreams and obsessions of mankind. The Penguin English Library - 100 editions of the best fiction in English, from the eighteenth century and the very first novels to the beginning of the First World War.
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  • Moby Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: ACHPO
    Hardback
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  • Billy Budd, Sailor and Selected Tales

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: ACHPK
    Paperback
    'Truth uncompromisingly told will always have its ragged edges.' So wrote Melville of Billy Budd, Sailor, among the greatest of his works and, in its richness and ambiguity, among the most problematic. As the critic E. L. Grant Watson writes, 'In this short history of the impressment and hanging of a handsome sailor-boy are to be discovered problems as profound as those which puzzle us in the pages of the Gospels.' Outwardly a compelling narrative of events aboard a British man-of-war during the turmoil of the Napoleonic Wars, Billy Budd, Sailor is a nautical recasting of the Fall, a parable of good and evil, a meditation on justice and political governance, and a searching portrait of three extraordinary men. The passion it has aroused in its readers over the years is a measure of how deeply it addresses some of the fundamental questions of experience that every age must reexamine for itself. The selection in this volume represents the best of Melville's shorter fiction, and uses the most authoritative texts.The eight shorter tales included here were composed during Melville's years as a magazine writer in the mid 1850's and establish him, along with Hawthorne and Poe, as the greatest American story writer of his age. Several of the tales - Bartleby the Scrivener, Benito Cereno, The Encantadas, The Paradise of Bachelors and the Tartarus of Maids - are acknowledged masterpieces of their genres. All show Melville a master of irony, point-of-view, and tone whose fables ripple out in nearly endless circles of meaning.
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  • Moby-Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: ACHPJ
    Paperback
    In part, "Moby-Dick" is the story of an eerily compelling madman pursuing an unholy war against a creature as vast and dangerous and unknowable as the sea itself. But more than just a novel of adventure, more than an encyclopaedia of whaling lore and legend, the book can be seen as part of its author's lifelong meditation on America. Written with wonderfully redemptive humour, "Moby-Dick" is also a profound enquiry into character, faith and the nature of perception.
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  • Moby Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AAEEF
    Paperback
    This classic story of high adventure, manic obsession, and metaphysical speculation was Melville's masterpiece. The tale of Captain Ahab's frantic pursuit of the cunning and notorious white whale Moby Dick, is packed with drama, and draws heavily on the author's own experiences on the high seas. This edition includes passages from Melville's correspondence with Nathaniel Hawthorne, in which the two discussed the philosophical depths of the novel's plot and imagery.
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  • Moby-Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AAEBC
    Paperback
    Captain Ahab is an eerily compelling madman who focuses his distilled hatred and suffering (and that of generations before him) into the pursuit of a creature as vast, dangerous and unknowable as the sea itself. More than just a novel of adventure, this is a haunting social commentary populated with some of the most enduring characters in literature. Written with wonderfully redemptive humour, Moby Dick is a profound and timeless inquiry into character, faith and the nature of perception.
    • £6.39
    • RRP £7.99
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  • Moby-Dick

    Herman Melville

    Product Code: AACTA
    Paperback
    When Ishmael sets sail on the whaling ship Pequod one cold Christmas Day, he has no idea of the horrors awaiting him out on the vast and merciless ocean. The ship's strange captain, Ahab, is in the grip of an obsession to hunt down the famous white whale, Moby Dick, and will stop at nothing on his quest to annihilate his nemesis.
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