First Impression Friday is hosted by J.W. Martin.

First Impression Friday will be a meme where you talk about a book that you JUST STARTED! Maybe you’re only a chapter or two in, maybe a little farther. Based on this sampling of your current read, give a few impressions and predict what you’ll think by the end.

I have come across First Impression Friday through Krsitin Kraves Books. It piqued my interest so I decided to do my own. What better way to start than with a colossal literary masterpiece. Let us start! P.S. Do check out Kristin Kraves Books as it has many interesting book and reading-related pieces. 

9780895773227“It is the horrible texture of a fabric that should be woven of ships’ cables and hawsers. A Polar wind blows through it, and birds of prey hover over it.”

So Melville wrote of his masterpiece, one of the greatest works of imagination in literary history. 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 inquiry into character, faith, and the nature of perception. (Source: Goodreads)

It’s the end of the week but the start of a new month. Happy Halloween everyone! Apart from Halloween, it is also time for First Impression Friday! My current read is Herman Melville’s classic work, Moby Dick. Part of my 2019 Top 20 Reading List, I just started reading this book so I don’t have that much to build my first impression on. Nevertheless, I will still try.

To start of, I was surprised the book, often considered as one of the pillars of American literature, has gotten very low marks in Goodreads (currently, the average rating is 3.49). I haven’t read any of the reviews yet so as not to impair my appreciation of the novel but I found it baffling that the book should have very low ratings. But then again, Goodreads rating are rarely ever absolute.

Now to the book. I am cognizant the book was adapted into a film. Unfortunately, I have never seen the movie yet which could be in my favor. With over a hundred pages done, nothing of major consequences have happened yet. All the story did, so far, was to introduce me to the major characters in the story. I guess Melville is patiently taking his time in painting the backdrop to the rest of the story. I am starting to find it burdensome. I am just hoping the story picks up.

I found Ishmael, the story’s primary narrator, a little ephemeral. He gives of a caricature-vibe and he is doing nothing to capture my attention as a reader. Whilst he lacks personality, he is doing an amazing job of describing the different characters and their personalities. Whilst Ishmael is bland and dull, Captain Ahab is his antithesis. He is full of mystery but I am yet unsure of his motivations; that is something that I have to look forward to as the story develops. I am also keen on Queequeg and his backstory.

Having an inkling already from the movie adaptation and the various visual representations, I am expecting a whale to appear somewhere in the story. What I am interested in is how it will shape the characters and the story’s complexion. I am excited about the voyage Pequod and its crew of whalers is about to undertake. I expect that the action, tension and atmosphere will start to pick from here. I hope so.

What I truly want to understand while unraveling the story is why does the book keep on getting low remarks. I have some blogger friends who don’t take to kindly on the book as well. Are these low remarks justified? I am hoping I could crack this travesty. For now, I want to be as objective as possible and leave these things behind as I dive into the heart of the story.

How about you, reader, what book are you reading right now? I hope you’re enjoying whatever book you are reading.

Happy reading everyone! Happy Halloween! Happy weekend!