The Call of the Wild

By: Jack London

Summary

The book I am reading is called, "The Call of the Wild." This story takes place mainly in 1897 in Alaska, during the Klondike Gold Rush. Buck, a Scottish Shepard and St. Bernard mix with long gray fur, is the main character in the story. Buck is stolen from his home in California and brought to Alaska to be a sled dog for the gold rush and has to survive not only the brutal Alaskan winter, but also the other sled dogs. Buck is sold many times, and he is getting very tired. When it is spring, his owners plan to cross a dangerous river on thin ice, but a nice man nearby frees buck and saves his life. Buck watches as the rest of his team falls through the ice. Buck comes to love this man, but has a secret will to be free. When the man and his friends become rich, the Native Americans kill them and Buck avenges his owners by killing the Native Americans. Buck now has to decide his own fate, will he be free or will he stay domesticated at the foot of humans.

Point of View

Third Person Limited

The Story is told through the third person limited point of view. In the story, the reader only learns of Buck's thoughts and actions. The reader doesn't get to learn other characters thoughts and actions such as Spitz. Spitz attacks Buck, but the reader doesn't learn why or how Spitz had planned it.

Dialogue

"Hey, now, Morgan," said the stranger, "Here is a wonderful dog. Heavy dog with strong muscles for work. Good furry coat protect him from frost. Where you find dog like this?"

This dialogue leads into Buck being sold. It marks the beginning to Buck's Alaskan adventure. The stranger buys Buck after he says this.

Thornton rose to his feet. "No, sir. I would sooner sell myself into slavery than part with Buck. Don't ask me again.

Figurative Language

Simile

She was as inexperienced at trail life as the men were.

This explains how badly prepared Buck's owners were. They were not organized and quarreled a lot.

Metaphor

A white streak form above onto a white streak going by.

This explains how fast Spitz and the rabbit were moving before Buck attacked Spitz. The dogs were chancing a rabbit and when Spitz killed it, Buck attacked him.

Imagery

They sat watching the sparkling water and listening to the birds.

The reader learns how the environment around Buck looks and sounds.

Personification

Buck sat back and watched the dancing flames.

This sentence give the flames of the camp fire the human quality of dancing. Every night Buck sat and watched the flames and saw wild dogs. When he saw these visions, he dreamed of being wild. The fire is also where Buck starts to embrace a wolf's call that he calls, "The Call of the Wild."