#questusreviewus Pierre; or, the Ambiguities – Priyam Patel

Pierre: or, the Ambiguities is an incoherent story without a set focus.  Melville begins with a well written and eye-catching introduction that leads us into believing this novel is a romantic coming of age story.  However, despite his mastery in language, he cannot seem to stick to one story path and creates an overly complicated plot line that focuses more on the “ambiguous” descriptions of scenery and events.  Instead of focusing on the journey of Pierre and Isabel, he leads us astray with long descriptions about Pierre’s ancestors or inanimate objects around Pierre.  I admit that these descriptions are very detailed, beautiful, and have the ability to draw the reader in, but have very little to no value towards the story itself.  Melville will spend more time on these descriptions instead of putting time towards developing a plot line.  As a result, the main story itself feels rushed, confusing, and dull as the I progressed through the novel.

By the end of the novel, I was left with more questions than answers.  It made me think what could possibly be going through Melville’s mind when he wrote this book to where he could have creating such astonishingly strange characters.  The headache I was given while trying to understand the peculiar thoughts and actions of Pierre and his associates only leaves me exhausted and uninterested in Melville’s story.  Overall, I believe this novel has a good start to the story but left me unsatisfied by the end and questioning as to why Melville took the route that he took.  If you are interested in long and mostly unnecessary descriptive text with sudden twists in an adventurous and confusing storyline, than this is the book for you, otherwise, steer clear away from this disaster of a novel.