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The Sea Wolf by Jack London
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's review
Jul 15, 08

It probably deserves five stars but I read it years ago and it may not be as good as I remember. Basically it is the study of man in all of his savagery and civility. London told us about men by personifying wolves in Call of the Wild and White Fang. Here he tells us about men with a shipwrecked aristrocrat and a ruthless pirate captain named Wolf.
At the outset the men are perfect opposites of one another. London beautifully pushes both of them to the limits of thier humanity until the exterior is stripped away and they are both seen for what they are, men at odds with life, desparately clutching for meaning and hope. It is an unlikely freindship, even love, that develops, but still quite believable.
I remember loving this book and for that it earns four stars. Maybe it is best to leave it that way and not submit it to "adult" inspection. When I was fifteen it moved me, do I need to know anything else about it? I almost fear that reading it again would be like listening to Pink Floyd or Tori Amos again and realizing that what once evoked something in me no longer evokes anything. At those times I'm faced with the question, "Has the thing lost its evocativeness, or have I lost that which was evoked?" This is a a troubling question and is the reason I no longer read anything by Robert Fulghum.

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