August 21, 2019

Herman Melville and “Moby-Dick” Saluted By Author of “The Last of the Great Whales”

To the Editor:

As a devoted reader of Stuart Mitchner’s weekly essays, I marveled at his “Celebrating Herman Melville’s 200th Birthday: The Word is Love” [Book Review, August 7]. Not only did he explain his happy obsession with Moby-Dick, he challenged Jill Lepore’s piece in the July 29 New Yorker by documenting Melville’s enduring marriage to Elizabeth Shaw. Further, Stuart cited the ultimate salute to Melville and the whale in Philip Hoare’s Moby-Dick Big Read of all chapters of the great work with gorgeous art and music which has received 10 million hits to date. This masterful essay was written by the only one of us among nine million residents of the Garden State to sport a MOBY license plate. Hats off to Stuart, long may he wave!

Scott McVay
Province Line Road

The writer, author of “The Last of the Great Whales” (Scientific American), formerly served on the U.S. delegation to the International Whaling Commission.