[books] Help from the literati

Can anyone recommend particularly good (ideally, annotated) editions of Moby Dick and Leaves of Grass? I am feeling a powerful urge to return to the classics.

(No, I don’t know why either. I suspect the influence of Terry Pratchett.)

2 thoughts on “[books] Help from the literati

  1. I haven’t been able to dig heavily into my copy yet (moving means it’s been in and out of boxes since I unwrapped it under the Christmas tree) but I have the Norton Critical Edition (ISBN 0393972836) of Moby-Dick. I’ve never had a Norton Critical disappoint me. This second edition has lots of biographical info on Melville, including, I think, some previously unpublished letters. From my brief time with it out of the box, it looks like a great edition.

    Cannot help with Whitman.

  2. Jaws says:

    May I respectfully suggest that you choose the Norton Critical Edition of Melville’s The Confidence Man over any edition of Moby Dick, if you insist on Melville? Or, better yet, choose Twain? There’s a big difference between “classic because they’re easy to teach, and helped a bunch of arrogant isolationists establisha faux identity for ‘American’ literature in the face of WWI” and “classic because they’re good and withstand the test of time.”

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