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» » South Sea Tales

South Sea Tales by Jack London

South Sea Tales
South Sea Tales
Jack London
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1631 kb
Size epub:
1155 kb
NuVision Publications, LLC (December 16, 2008)
124 pages
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Literature & Fiction

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Considered by many to be America's finest author, Jack London, had little formal schooling. Initially, he attended school only through the 8th grade, although he was an avid reader, educating himself at public libraries, especially the Oakland Public Library under the tutelage of Ina Coolbrith, who later became the first poet laureate of California. In later years (mid-1890s), Jack returned to high school in Oakland and graduated. He eventually gained admittance to U.C. Berkeley, but stayed only for six months, finding it to be "not alive enough" and a "passionless pursuit of passionless intelligence". Once Jack had resolved himself to succeed as an author, his diligent habits and innate skills catapulted him far beyond most of his literary peers in both perspective and content. By following a strict writing regimen of 1,000 words a day, he was able to produce a huge quantity of high quality work over a period of eighteen years. Jack had become the best-selling, highest paid and most popular American author of his time.
  • MegaStar
Great book on adventures in the South Seas among the natives---if you like this book you will also want to read:
1. Faery Lands of the South Seas (1921) (With Active Table of Contents)
2. Twenty years in the Philippines (Illustrated) (1853)
3. Captain Quinton: Being a Truthful Record of the Experiences and Escapes of Robert Quinton during his Life Among the Cannibals of the South Seas (1912)
4. James Chalmers, missionary and explorer of Rarotonga and New Guinea (1887) (Interactive Table of Contents)
5. The History of the Bonin Islands from the Year 1827 to the Year 1876, and of Nathaniel Savory, One of the Original Settlers
6. The life and adventures of Alexander Selkirk the real Robinson Crusoe: a narrative founded on facts (1829)
7. The Sandalwood Trade and Traders of Polynesia (1862 Pamphlet)
8. Philippine Folk Tales [Illustrated]
9. Lost Island (1918) (With active table of contents)
10. The Mystery of Easter Island: The Story of an Expedition (1919) (Linked Contents)
  • Dynen
Jack London, the literary giant who was a precursor to Hemingway's laconic world of Men, wrote books and short stories based on his own short, but incredibly tumultuous life. I started reading London at the age of ten, and have been re-reading his short stories since then every five or so years. The charm never wears off! In this collection of South Seas Stories, The House of Mapuhi, The Heathen, and The Seed of McCoy are definitely the best. Like all London's stories and most of his books, they are about adventure at the time when nature was still rough and cruel, and about men fighting nature and other man (when they were rough and cruel, but perhaps not as much as today). Men are always MEN, and though they win or lose, they always preserve their courage, loyalty, and humanity.
It is very strange to read 1911 prose, where the vocabulary is so different from to-day's politically correct non-racist language. And yet, although London's vocabulary would have been racist indeed if written to-day, his attitude is not. Often, as in The House of Mapuhi or in The Heathen, he praises Polynesian natives much more than some of the "inevitable" whites.
A must for all ages!
  • Golkree
To start with, this is NOT "South Sea Tales." The original collection of Jack London short stories bearing that title is a collection of 8 stories as far as I have been able to determine, and only some of those appear in this collection. Publishers have been misleading readers by putting out a wide variety of editions that contain SOME stories from South Sea Tales, and using the same original title without indicating that it is not the original. To give the present publisher credit, if you check inside to read the table of contents, it contains 10 stories, only four of which are from South Sea Tales, but the book cover can mislead a purchaser who is not careful (Amazon, at least, gives you the option of checking inside).

Having said that, it represents some of the lesser writing by Jack London. It is not at the level of his writing about the Yukon. If you are a Jack London fan, you might want to read it. Otherwise save your money. I might have given it three stars if the publisher had used an honest title, but I am irked by publishers who mislead purchasers (another problem has been publishers who change a title on a book, so you think you are buying something new and end up with something you have already read).
  • Grari
Eight good stories by Jack London, about the people and places of the south Pacific in 1908. Also a good long introduction by A. Grove Day which should (like all too many "introductions") only be read *after* reading the stories.
Most of the people in these stories are, of course, either victims or perpetrators (or both) of one of those long painful Western exploitations of a less civilized ("less civilized") part of the world. London knows that that's what's going on, and he writes with sympathy for all concerned, and without the more self-conscious bemoaning that would be expected of a XXIst century writer. To the modern reader, then, he can sometimes seem cold-blooded, but seldom disturbingly so.
The prose is fine and spare most of the time, and never gets in the way of the tale. The places and the tales are memorable. There is not a great variety of character and setting; the eight stories together could almost be a single novel. His voyage on the Snark (which inspired these stories) clearly left him with a strong and single impression of this place and these people, and he conveys that impression skillfully along to us.
Definitely worth reading.
  • in waiting
What a huge disappointment. Purchased this book for my kindle, only to find London's rich and evocative prose broken by gibberish words or phrases every few sentences. At best it's confusing and misleading to try to read and decipher the gibberish parts by context. At worst, it's impossible to read and a total waste of $. Thanks, Amazon, for apparently zero quality control and pulling a successful bat-and-switch. I tried to give this item zero stars but apparently nothing is worth less than one. If I had my way, I'd have given it zero stars. I want my money back, but challenging the Amazon bureaucracy is too daunting, even for someone as stubbornly determined as me.
  • Arador
I thoroughly enjoyed reading these stories of the sea and sailors of the south. Each tale gave an excellent insight into the world from which they came. In my paintings of the sea and sailors at anthonydunphyfineart.com you can see them for yourself.
  • Iaiastta
Wonderful South Seas short stories in the tradition of Robert Louis Stevenson and James Michener . For those who might be offended, he does use the "N" word. Obviously written before such concerns were voiced. The characters who use it are portrayed as brutal types.
Very "far flung" stories. Real adventure happening in the South Sea Islands. Some places hard to read and I skimmed.