Buck lives a content life. Half St. Bernard, half Sheppard, he is top dog on a California ranch. But the Gold Rush in the Klondike has produced an enormous demand for sled dogs. So, when a gardener at the ranch needs to pay a gambling debt, stealing and selling Buck is a quick way to do it.Having never been mistreated, Buck soon learns that man can be the cruelest animal. He is whipped, beaten, and caged, but never broken. Confronted by the law of survival, Buck learns to fight, steal, and pull a sled. He takes pride in his new strength and ferocity. Buck manages to escape this life of abuse and learns to love a new master more than his own life. He gradually discovers the skills of his forbears and finds his home in the primordial forest; eventually Buck cannot resist the call of the wild.This classic book brings out the true spirit of the Gold Rush days at the turn of the last century. It portrays the brutality, kindness, love, and folly that Jack London experienced first-hand during his time in the far north. It was his first successful book, and catapulted him to literary fame.
In this short and thrilling classic, Patrick Lawlor is called upon to render a dog's point of view in a natural and convincing way. Buck is a 4-year-old shepherd-husky mix who is stolen from his California home and shipped to Alaska during the Gold Rush to join a team of half-frozen sled dogs. Lawlor's matter-of-fact interpretation of Buck's perceptions, experiences, and above all, his helplessness to control his fate successfully stir up as much intimacy and compassion as any human character might. From the first moment, the listener willingly casts disbelief aside and joins hearts with this noble animal.
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- Jacqueline M.