The Call of the Wild
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Jack London's novels and ruggedly individual life seemed to embody American hopes, frustrations, and romantic longings in the turbulent first years of the twentieth century, years infused with the wonder and excitement of great technological and historic change. The author's restless spirit, taste for a life of excitement, and probing mind led him on a series of hard-edged adventures from the Klondike to the South Seas. Out of these sometimes harrowing experiences — and his fascination with the theories of such thinkers as Darwin, Spencer, and Marx — came the inspiration for novels of adventure that would make him one of America’s most popular writers.
The Call of the Wild, considered by many London's greatest novel, is a gripping tale of a heroic dog that, thrust into the brutal life of the Alaska Gold Rush, ultimately faces a choice between living in man's world and returning to nature. Adventure and dog-story enthusiasts as well as students and devotees of American literature will find this classic work a thrilling, memorable reading experience.
could not but be other dogs on so vast a place, but they did not count. They came and went, resided in the populous kennels, or lived obscurely in the recesses of the house after the fashion of Toots, the Japanese pug, or Ysabel, the Mexican hairless – strange creatures that rarely put nose out of doors or set foot to ground. On the other hand, there were the fox terriers, a score of them at least, who yelped fearful promises at Toots and Ysabel looking out of the windows at them and protected by
besetting sin. He loved to play Chinese lottery. Also, in his gambling, he had one besetting weakness – faith in a system; and this made his damnation certain. For to play a system requires money, while the wages of a gardener’s helper do not lap over the needs of a wife and numerous progeny. The Judge was at a meeting of the Raisin Growers’ Association, and the boys were busy organizing an athletic club, on the memorable night of Manuel’s treachery. No one saw him and Buck go off through the
very faintly he could hear the impact of the club upon his body. But it was no longer his body, it seemed so far away. And then, suddenly, without warning, uttering a cry that was inarticulate and more like the cry of an animal, John Thornton sprang upon the man who wielded the club. Hal was hurled backward, as though struck by a falling tree. Mercedes screamed. Charles looked on wistfully, wiping his watery eyes, but did not get up because of his stiffness. John Thornton stood over Buck,
opportunity. But in the end Buck’s pertinacity was rewarded; for the wolf, finding that no harm was intended, finally sniffed noses with him. Then they became friendly, and played about in the nervous, half-coy way with which fierce beasts belie their fierceness. After some time of this the wolf started off at an easy lope in a manner that plainly showed he was going somewhere. He made it clear to Buck that he was to come, and they ran side by side through the sombre twilight, straight up the
the Yukon in north-west Canada. Thousands of prospectors from all over the world headed to the region to try their luck at panning for gold and becoming rich. Millions of dollars’ worth of gold was found there but the freezing conditions were treacherous and many returned empty-handed – like Jack London himself. ∗ Imagine that you are a gold prospector at that time. Draw a map of North America, north-west Canada and Alaska, and plot your route. ∗ What equipment would you take with you? What