Customer Reviews for

Billy Budd

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2008

    a reviewer

    ¿Billy Budd¿ The book ¿Billy Budd¿ was a good book for readers who like war stories. Herman Melville is the author of the book. He is a very famous author. He wrote ¿Mobey Dick¿ as well. The book is not an extremely easy read some words are challenging but it is still a good read. There are really only two major characters in the whole book. They are Captain Vere and Billy. They are in the main plot through out the whole book. Billy is a young man he is only 19 and he decides he wants to join the navy. I would describe him as brave and rough. He goes through allot of challenging things in the book, but he perseveres and stays true to his country. Captain Vere is an older man and he is the captain of the ship. I would describe Captain Vere as a very intelligent person but he is very hostile in some parts of the book. He also interprets people for who they really are. The book takes place on an American ship in a war against the British navy. The boat Billy is assigned to leaves from a port on the coast of Mass. The boat is made for war and and is a light brown and has a large America flag at the top that ¿ruffles¿ in the ¿harsh wind¿. The whole story takes place on the ship sailing across the Atlantic Ocean in the 1800¿s. The plot of the book is a young man named Billy is on a a ship headed for Europe to fight a navel battle and someone frames Billy for treason against his ship crew. The people on the ship are not highly trained soldiers, they are just men who wanted to defend their county against the British so they joined the navy to attack Europe. Herman Melville was born in New York City Aug. 1, 1819. He ranks highly among some of Americas most famous authors. Herman¿s father was a merchant from New England and his mother came from a New York Dutch family. Herman¿s father died in 1831 from a mental and financial breakdown. The family Moved to Albany, New York in 1833. He died in New York in 1891 and the manuscript for ¿Billy Budd¿ was published in 1924. Some quotes made in story were ¿fight with your hearts not your hands¿ by Captain Vere before the final battle. Billy made one major quote and it was ¿if you blame me for treason you are cheating yourself and everyone on this ship¿. The theme of the book is a clash between innocence and evil. The man that frames Billy for treason is and evil man and Billy is a honest good hearted person who is accused for treason. This book is symbolic of a clash between innocence and evil. I though this book was a hard read but a good read I would recommend this book to anyone that is fourteen and up. If you like Herman Melville writing you will also like this book. Its not a huge action story but it does have a twist at the end and its not a bad on. It is a good book and I encourage people to read this book because I enjoyed and I think other readers will to.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2003

    Hard, but Worth It

    This book was really hard to read at first because of the complex language. I thought Melville memorized the dictionary before he ever started writing. Even though it starts out boring, it gets better, and in the end, you actually feel good about having completed it. It really is not long at all, and I used spark notes for better understanding. Basically, it is a challenge, but one worth confronting. Enjoy!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 29, 2013

    Hated it

    The plot is so slow. All its about is a sailor who is accused of scheming and billy murders the accuser and gets hnaged for it. Their is too much detail and the author takes a lot of bunny trails to get to the point

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2013

    Hated it

    This book is the worst book i have ever read. Let me repeat my self for you to get the point, it is THE worst book on the planet. A wasre of money and time. Never read this book. EVER! Thank you for taking the time to read this review. It is way better then the book. It doesnt even desearve half a star

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 7, 2013

    Rent movie instead

    Boring tedious language

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2011

    Boring - A true disappointment

    For an AP English school project my group decided we would read Billy Budd because it sounded interesting and action filled. However, this is far from the case. This is one of the boringest books I have ever read. The plot is extremely slow and hard to follow due to Melville's constant interruptions and ramblings about unimportant memories or ideas. Literally, chapters 3, 4, and 5 can all be skipped because they are completely irrelevant to the story and are aimless rambles. There is little to no dialog which adds to a slow read. For a 100 page book, this took a long time to complete. Melville uses a lot of uneeded huge complex words that make Billy Budd a deficult read. The plot is extremely anticlimatic and when it begins to pick up, it is instantly terminated and sumed up. There are no seabattles or sword fights and no action like you would think and hope. The lack of dialog and actual storyline due to uneeded and annoying rambles causes barley any characterization, making it hard to care about any of the characters Melville presents. They are all very dry. The villian, his plot, and demise are lame and Billy Budd is naive, unobservant, and stupid leading him to be an extremely disappointing protagonist. Don't waste your time with this book - I thought it sucked. But if you must read it, I strongly suggest reading the sparknotes along with it. I'd reread the Scarlet Letter before I ever touched this book again.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 18, 2002

    Worth the effort

    I read this book for school, and while I am not exactly inept, this book was hard as mess to read. Started out boring, but then I actually printed book notes and used them to help me understand and comprehend the book, and it really is a great book, if you're up for a challenge.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 14, 2001

    Billy Budd, a perspective from a New Hamptom School student.

    Herman Melville, best known for his novels of the sea, has written some very good books, which include ¿Moby Dick¿, ¿Redburn¿, and ¿Bartleby the Scrivener¿. One of his great stories is ¿Billy Budd the Sailor¿. Melville was born in New York into a family of merchants. When Melville was 12, his father died. At the end of Melville¿s life during his retirement, the story ¿Billy Budd the Sailor¿ was written, but it was not discovered until Melville had passed on. Some people say that the story was never completely finished. The story takes place at the end of the eighteenth century; Billy Budd, the main character, is a sailor on the H.M.S Right-of ¿Man a British navy ship. Shortly after the story starts, he is transferred to a new ship called the H.M.S Bellipotent. The shift to the new ship doesn¿t work out that well for Billy. He was off to a good start, but rumors started and Billy gets mad. The rumors lead to him getting into a fight with the master-at-arms on the H.M.S Bellipotent . What happens to Billy after this? Well, you will have to read the book to find out. The story is a more challenging nineteenth century American story, but it is well worth the efforts you put in to it. ¿Billy Budd¿ is a very good book, one that you can read more than once and still find something new each time.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 9, 2001

    Not bad

    I started reading this book in english class and dreaded it. The wording was hard and the story line didn't seem to catch my attention at first. However, the more and more we talked about it, it got more interesting. We started watching the movie that goes along with it and that helped clarify a lot of things. The story line is very well written and the relationship between this story and the story of Christ's crucifixtion is very interesting. I would recommend this book(not to read on your own time but for english classes to read together). It was a good experience

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 8, 2000

    A Very Rewarding Read

    Billy Budd, Sailor is one of the best books I have read in a long time. Melville's deep character descriptions lead to the hidden meanings and deep emotion so strong in this book. All the alusions, especially Biblical ones, show that Melville is writing for the critical and intelligent reader. This book requires thought on the reader's part but leaves a lasting impression. Reading comprehension is vital for your enjoyment, but for those that are able to grasp the novella's meaning it is a wonderful book. I highly recommend it!

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