Review: The Call of the Wild

Title: The Call of the Wild
Author: Jack London
Published: 1903
Page Count: 134
Rating: 4/5

The Call of the Wild is about a St. Bernard mixed with Shepherd named Buck. He grows as a puppy into a good life in California but is then kidnapped and shipped to Klondike because they need dogs to pull sleds. Buck is treated really terribly and beaten. Buck is sold to two mail carriers, Francois and Perrault and is used as their sled dog to pull the mail. Buck has to learn to fight for himself because the other dogs will take his food if he does not eat it fast enough or stand up for himself. He butts heads with the pack’s leader, Spitz, and they continue to butt heads. Buck and his team are then sold to gold hunters, Charles, Hal and Mercedes. The three of them are not experienced with sled dogs and they don’t know what they are doing. They have too much weight on the sled and they continue to beat the dogs for not pulling them. When they finally arrive at John Thornton’s camp, he warns them not to go over the ice. But they want to continue on their journey. Buck will not move. Hal beats him severely and Thornton stops him. Thornton becomes Buck’s new master and Buck loves his new owner. But he is conflicted with the call he is hearing, drawing him to the wild and his love for Thornton.

I went into this book completely blind. I had never read this book or seen the movie. I knew it was about a dog and that was all I knew. I actually really enjoyed this classic. I’m a huge fan of the movies Snow Dogs and Eight Below. Something about sled dogs is fascinating to me. So I’m not sure why I never would have read this before. There is quite a bit of bloody parts in the book though, which I don’t really enjoy. It was also sad in some parts. One character that I particularly had a strong dislike for was Hal and Mercedes. Hal was just always whipping the dogs because they were tired and hungry and he wouldn’t let them rest or feed them. And Mercedes… oh gosh! She was so whiny and all she wanted to do was ride in the sled because she was too tired to walk. So when Hal and Charles took her out of the sled she just sat there and whined and bickered. Ugh! I hated that so much. Thornton is obviously the great character in this book. I hate to see dogs abused and it brought so much joy to see how happy Buck was when Thornton treated him so nicely. After reading this, I just wanted to cuddle with my dog. I can’t imagine anything like what happened in this book happening to her and that’s why it just breaks my heart, knowing there are dogs that are treated terribly. Anyway, I loved this classic and I recommend it to everyone. It’s really short and just such a great read!