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Big Book Club's "What the Whale!"

Our Mission: To read really big books, talk about them online, and cheer each other on when necessary.

Each week librarians Jennie, Megan, Pete and Alex ask and answer questions that come up during our online Sunday night discussion, drop pop-culture references, talk to guest experts, and more.

Previous books: War and Peace (summer 2018); Middlemarch (winter 2019)

The Big Book Club is a production of the Arlington Public Library, Arlington Virginia

Jun 18, 2019

180 pages in, and we've barely left port...

This week we discussed knowing that we're reading a "Big Book," and therefore expecting more drama out of Ahab as character. We also wondered whether, if we'd read Moby-Dick when it first was published, would we have been bored out of our minds by this point?

Books we...


Jun 11, 2019

This week we realize that running off to sea and adopting a nome-de-mer is usually a sign that you're trying to escape from something...

PSA: You can learn pirate in the Mango Languages app, free with your library card.

Palate cleansers:


Jun 4, 2019

We're ready to set sail with plenty of whale puns...

Don't have your book yet?

The Library has unlimited copies in eBook and eAudiobook. Or you could listen to the Moby-Dick Big Read podcast produced by the Arts Institute at the University of Plymouth.

And don't forget to join the What the Whale! Facebook group...


Mar 26, 2019

For our final week of Middlemarch we were joined by guest host Heather, who loves soup with pasta, baseball of all kinds, as well as the work of Charles Dickens.

Missing Middlemarch? We have a book list for you! Thanks to Gale for getting it started.

Things we plan to read after Middlemarch:

  • Heather - Ron Chernow's...


Mar 19, 2019

This week we were joined by return-guest host Gale, who we happened to find out loves horror books and films.

Palate cleansers -