I’ve long held that Herman Melville is a bad writer, a guy who started out with some interesting stories (Typee, White Jacket) then got so mired down in SAYING things, it became impossible for him to tell a story. Get your knickers in a twist all you like, but with the background plot of Moby Dick, no one should have a problem getting through it. Instead, Melville larded it up with so much blubber it’s difficult for even some more academically minded readers to get through.
It might be different if Melville had a consistent poetry or fluidity to his writing–like Faulkner or Joyce–but no. (And there’s no clearer proof of this than his awful, awful attempts at poetry.)
Continue reading “Twain Knows Why I Can’t Stand Herman Melville”