The greatest novel in the english language . . . period!
Moby-dick is, without question, the greatest novel written in the english language. middlemarch doesn't come close; none of the mature henry james novels come close; heck, not even ulysses comes close (frankly, i'd like to see some scholar examine the influence of moby-dick on ulysses--there has to be some). this book shouldn't be merely read, it must be consumed eziekiel-style. i have never read any book that has had such a powerful influence on me. whenever, i travel, i now carry a copy of shakespeare, milton, and moby-dick. if i were banished to an island and could take only one book with me, moby-dick would be my choice. no matter how many times i read it (and it has been several), i always find something new. it is endlessly fascinating.