I do this daily trivia question at Sploofus.com. They email me a link and I answer a daily question on pretty much everything. There is a ladder to move up the more you get right, so I think that is why I keep doing it. Whatever. Point is: yesterday's question (7-12-2011) was about Moby Dick.
A sailor's narrative of the sinking of the Essex was an inspiration for which 19th century novel?
- Horatio Hornblower
- Mutiny on the Bounty
- A Night to Remember
- Moby Dick
- 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
So as you can see, you had to have some knowledge of the subject. There is at least one very viable option in those choices with 20K Leagues. Two others aren't half bad at all as guesses (and I really have no idea about A Night to Remember...something about Titanic that the clue negates if you know your timeline.)
I must say that the Essex story was far more interesting than Moby Dick. It's called In the Heart of the Sea by Nathan Philbrick and I absolutely loved that read. And I don't normally go for non-fiction at all.
I just think the thought process for Melville must have been interesting...
Hmmm, this story about the Essex is fascinating. Ten thousand miles from the nearest land mass. Do you know that they had to resort to cannibalism on the trip home? It might make you crazy enough to want revenge on a silly whale! ...Wait a minute, I think I may have something here...
So, in all ways, In the Heart of the Sea is like an unofficial prequel to Moby Dick.