Rugged, Rugged Melville . . .
W. O. "Bill" Pettit
Avast! (Whatever that means.) Here be a wander-full, errant whale of a cover! (Note the missing hyphen in the book-title.) I came across this boys' book by clicking onto the online version of an International Herald Tribune article by Kathryn Harrison reviewing Nathaniel Philbrick's defense of Herman Melville's magnum opus, the novel Moby-Dick. That online copy of Harrison's article appears in the New York Times as "How to Read Moby-Dick" (October 21, 2011)
Go there to read about Philbrick's advocacy of Melville -- the great author needs no defense here on Gypsy Scholar! I first read Moby-Dick entire while living in Berkeley and putting off my doctoral-thesis application -- therefore in the mid-1980s -- indicating that I read that novel in Stephens Lounge under the watchful gaze of the Professor Stephens portrait hung high up on the wall.
I recall being amazed at how 'modern' the novel was, how entertaining it could be! True, there was a lot of whaling terminology to master, but Melville himself elaborated much of that. I don't recall the cover on my copy, but it certainly didn't have the appearance of the cover above, that 'homosocial' image of stalwart, sturdy, upper-class teenage boys dressed in their semi-formal attire, the tallest boy bearing a football and leading shorter boys as they float down a flight of ethereal, blue steps toward a game of something like rugby . . . except that the sport will have to be far more rugged, "fishing for whales," involving a Scottish Terrier, for some odd reason . . .