Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym by Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allen Poe 1809-1849

Edgar Allan Poe is a name that is heard a lot in schools. In schools, people talk about him as if he is someone that they may know personally. If you mention him to a student, he or she might say "That Poe is crazy!" as if he/she talks to Poe all of the time.

I was talking to some colleagues about Poe, and we all agreed that his writings are bizarre, but they are sooo good; we love his writings. Some of our favorite Poe pieces are of course "The Raven," "The Fall of the House of Usher," "Tell-Tale Heart," "Annabel Lee," and "The Masque of the Red Death," just to name a few.

When I was doing my studies for the teaching of The Life of Pi, I read that the tiger, Richard Parker, that was on the life boat with Pi, was named after the character Richard Parker from The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym. So, I decided that I would read this book to see if I could make a connection between the two Richard Parkers, and I didn't, but I am still happy that I read The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym.

"The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket is the only complete novel written by American writer Edgar Allan Poe. The work relates the tale of the young Arthur Gordon Pym who stows away aboard a whaling ship called Grampus. Various adventures and misadventures befall Pym including shipwreck, mutiny, and cannibalism before he is saved by the crew of the Jane Guy. Aboard this vessel, Pym and a sailor named Dirk Peters continue their adventures further south. Docking on land, they encounter hostile black-skinned natives before escaping back to the ocean. The novel ends abruptly as Pym and Peters continue towards the South Pole." (Source: Poe, E. A. (1903). The Narrative of Gordon Pym. New York, NY: P.F. Collier and Son.)

This novel is written in true Poe fashion with lots of suspense. There were times when I literally could not stop reading, because I wanted to know what would happen next. At one point Arthur is hidden on this ship, and Poe writes this with such great suspense, until I was reading as fast as I could to find out what was going to happen to Arthur. Of course, he survives, but......You just never know how things will turn out when Poe is the writer.

Well, I read all 446 pages of this novel, and as stated earlier, it abruptly ended!

Poe or the editor explains that the last chapters were lost....

Even with the abrupt ending, I really enjoyed this book....

Poe never lets his readers down!!!!!

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