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The Call of the Wild

Jack London

Book Overview: 

Buck is living a happy life in California until he is sold to pay a gambling debt. Taken to the Klondike to become a sled dog, Buck must toughen up and learn the harsher rules of survival in the North. One of the first of these is how to deal with being harnessed in the same team as a dog that wants to kill him.

Large, strong and smart, Buck toughens to his new life. But even the toughest dog can be worn down by constant work, and after 3,000 miles of pulling sleds, Buck nears the end of his rope.

Cast away as no longer useful, Buck is acquired by greenhorns whose inexperience nearly kills him, but after being saved by John Thornton, he at last finds a man he can love.

Then on a remote gold-hunting expedition, Buck hears a call emanating from the woods and speaking to the wild heart of his distant ancestors. The lure of it almost balances the great love he bears for Thornton, but events take him away from his old life... and into legend.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .They made good time down the chain of lakes which fills the craters of extinct volcanoes, and late that night pulled into the huge camp at the head of Lake Bennett, where thousands of goldseekers were building boats against the break-up of the ice in the spring. Buck made his hole in the snow and slept the sleep of the exhausted just, but all too early was routed out in the cold darkness and harnessed with his mates to the sled.

That day they made forty miles, the trail being packed; but the next day, and for many days to follow, they broke their own trail, worked harder, and made poorer time. As a rule, Perrault travelled ahead of the team, packing the snow with webbed shoes to make it easier for them. Francois, guiding the sled at the gee-pole, sometimes exchanged places with him, but not often. Perrault was in a hurry, and he prided himself on his knowledge of ice, which knowledge was indispensable, for the fall ice was very thin, and where there was swift w. . . Read More

Community Reviews

IL VALORE DELLA LIBERTÀ

Buck è figlio di un maschio sanbernardo e di una madre pastore scozzese, e ha l'aspetto di un lupo.

Nonostante l’ambientazione sia principalmente all’aria aperta, questo romanzo è è un capostipite del genere ‘carcerario’, autentica discesa agli inferi: perché Buck viene strappato alla sua vita d...more

The Call of the Wild, Jack London
The Call of the Wild is a short adventure novel by Jack London. The central character of the novel is a dog named Buck. The story opens at a ranch in Santa Clara Valley, California, when Buck is stolen from his home and sold into service as a sled dog in Ala...more

I guess it's important to remember that this is a book about a dog. I had no idea, when I was ten and I read and re-read this for the first several times, that it was also a socialist fable. I just really liked dogs, and we couldn't have one, so I read a lot of books about them. Here's this book...more

I defy anyone - man, woman or child - not to like The Call of the Wild. It's the most exciting adventure, the most moving love story, the deepest meditation on a creature and its place in nature. If you aren't cheering for Buck the dog by the end of this you're either hard-hearted or a cat-lover.

my goodness, this is a tough one for me to review. the abundance of violence and animal cruelty made this such an emotional read for me. i can understand why this is a classic and so well loved - there are many great themes in this book and the resolution is quite satisfying, but i struggled with...more

He was mastered by the sheer surging of life, the tidal wave of being, the perfect joy of each separate muscle, joint, and sinew in that it was everything that was not death, that it was aglow and rampant, expressing itself in movement, flying exultantly under the stars.
Jack London, THE CALL OF THE WILD

i am a dog obsessive. i'm nuts. dogs are my moby dick. they're my opera-house in the jungle. if i had a genie in a bottle, i'd wish away all human life (including my own) so dogs could take over the world. wait. that'd be wish number two. number one would be that i had an olympic sized swimming p...more

Men are so cruel. The way they break animals is deplorable; they use them, exploit them and abuse them all in the name of sport, entertainment and human convenience. Men are cruel. They try to conquer rather than living in a world of mutual respect; it’s man who has lost his nature, and he impose...more

I remembered discovering either Call of the Wild or Whitefang when I was a boy and really liking it, so on finding this on our shelves I read it to Celyn (12 but too disabled to read).

I found myself translating on the hoof as the book was written in 1903 and much of the language is qu...more

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