Hailed by critics as
one of the greatest sea stories ever written, this rousing adventure offers a
fascinating combination of gritty realism and sublime lyricism in its portrayal
of an elemental conflict. Jack London began his career at sea, and his
shipboard experiences imbue The
In the story, the gentleman narrator, Humphrey Van Weyden, is pitted against an amoral sea captain, Wolf Larsen, in a clash of idealism with materialism. The novel begins when Van Weyden is swept overboard into San Francisco Bay, and plucked from the sea by Larsen's seal-hunting vessel, the Ghost. Pressed into service as a cabin boy by the ruthless captain, Van Weyden becomes an unwilling participant in a brutal shipboard drama. Larsen's increasingly violent abuse of the crew fuels a mounting tension that ultimately boils into mutiny, shipwreck, and a desperate confrontation.
Read and loved around the world, this 1904 maritime classic has influenced such writers as Hemingway, Orwell, and Kerouac.