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Israel Potter

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Overview

The traveller who at the present day is content to travel in the good old Asiatic style, neither rushed along by a locomotive, nor dragged by a stage-coach; who is willing to enjoy hospitalities at far-scattered farmhouses, instead of paying his bill at an inn; who is not to be frightened by any amount of loneliness, or to be deterred by the roughest roads or the highest hills; such a traveller in the eastern part of Berkshire, Massachusetts, will find ample food for poetic reflection in the singular scenery of a...
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Israel Potter

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Overview

The traveller who at the present day is content to travel in the good old Asiatic style, neither rushed along by a locomotive, nor dragged by a stage-coach; who is willing to enjoy hospitalities at far-scattered farmhouses, instead of paying his bill at an inn; who is not to be frightened by any amount of loneliness, or to be deterred by the roughest roads or the highest hills; such a traveller in the eastern part of Berkshire, Massachusetts, will find ample food for poetic reflection in the singular scenery of a country, which, owing to the ruggedness of the soil and its lying out of the track of all public conveyances, remains almost as unknown to the general tourist as the interior of Bohemia.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

Published in 1855, Melville's fictional biography is his only historical novel. It tells the story of Israel Potter, a Revolutionary War hero and Bunker Hill survivor who ultimately ends up on the streets of London. Melville mixes fact with fiction and real characters (Ben Franklin) with invented ones.


—Michael Rogers
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781500535735
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
  • Publication date: 7/18/2014
  • Pages: 100
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.21 (d)

Meet the Author

Herman Melville (1819—1891) was born in New York and began writing after joining the whaler Acushnet bound for the Pacific. Books based on his adventures, including Moby-Dick, won him immediate acclaim; however, he died virtually forgotten.
Robert S. Levine is a professor of English at the University of Maryland.

Biography

Herman Melville was born in August 1, 1819, in New York City, the son of a merchant. Only twelve when his father died bankrupt, young Herman tried work as a bank clerk, as a cabin-boy on a trip to Liverpool, and as an elementary schoolteacher, before shipping in January 1841 on the whaler Acushnet, bound for the Pacific. Deserting ship the following year in the Marquesas, he made his way to Tahiti and Honolulu, returning as ordinary seaman on the frigate United States to Boston, where he was discharged in October 1844. Books based on these adventures won him immediate success. By 1850 he was married, had acquired a farm near Pittsfield, Massachussetts (where he was the impetuous friend and neighbor of Nathaniel Hawthorne), and was hard at work on his masterpiece Moby-Dick.

Literary success soon faded; his complexity increasingly alienated readers. After a visit to the Holy Land in January 1857, he turned from writing prose fiction to poetry. In 1863, during the Civil War, he moved back to New York City, where from 1866-1885 he was a deputy inspector in the Custom House, and where, in 1891, he died. A draft of a final prose work, Billy Budd, Sailor, was left unfinished and uncollated, packed tidily away by his widow, where it remained until its rediscovery and publication in 1924.

Author biography courtesy of Penguin Group (USA).

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    1. Date of Birth:
      August 1, 1819
    2. Place of Birth:
      New York, New York
    1. Date of Death:
      September 28, 1891
    2. Place of Death:
      New York, New York
    1. Education:
      Attended the Albany Academy in Albany, New York, until age 15

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 4 of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2012

    Good but

    The typos are annoying he dpoes g on
    o

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 27, 2011

    Would recommend, if you enjoy Melville.

    Here goes! I have a B.A. in English, an M.B.A., and an M.Ed. in Language Arts; but this doesn't begin to allow me to write a serious review of one of Melville's novels. I enjoy Melville, as I've read his past year all he has published, and am willing to share my opinions as a reader. Israel Potter was written later in his career, and only before The Confidence Man and Billy Budd. I struggled to finish Confidence Man, but found Potter to be as adventuresome as Typee, Omoo, Moby Dick, etc. Better than Redburn and White Jacket, Potter exhibits some of the same storytelling tools that made Forrest Gump enjoyable - one man seems to have encountered many culturally significant events and persons. He fought at Bunker Hill, worked for Benjamin Franklin in Paris, and fought with John Paul Jones on the Bonhomme Richard. Towards the end of his stay in England, Potter chances to meet Ethan Allen as a prisoner of the British.
    If you like Melville, like I said, you would enjoy this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 28, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 4 of 3 Customer Reviews

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