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Atheneum to host marathon 'Moby Dick' reading

With nearly 100 people reading, the event will last more than 24 hours

"As for me, I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote."

Remote is surely how many of us feel about about Nantucket  come the doldrums of winter every year, but if the Nantucket Atheneum has anything to say about it we won't be lacking for something to do.

In addition to their many regular programs, the Atheneum is continuing their annual tradition of a "Moby Dick" read-athon beginning this Saturday morning at 9 a.m. Free and open to the public, this event was the 2011 brainchild of Nantucket resident and National Book Award winner Nathaniel Philbrick.

This year, the event has attracted nearly 100 readers who will take successive turns reading Melville's massive, classic novel that boasts more than 210,000 words and 135 chapters.

"It's a really fun community event," said Amy Jenness, the Atheneum's Adult Programs Coordinator. "Even if reading out loud in front of people isn't your thing, just coming to listen can be pretty great."

The entire reading could last up to 27 hours, said Jenness.

The public is encouraged to attend and listen throughout the event which is expected to finish sometime around noon on Sunday.