The Wild by Christopher Golden: The Secret Journeys of Jack London

The world knows Jack London as a writer who lived his own thrilling, real-life adventures. But there are parts of his life that have remained hidden for many years, things so horrifying even he couldn’t set them down in writing. These are the Secret Journeys of Jack London.

We meet Jack at age seventeen, following thousands of men and women into the Yukon Territory in search of gold. For Jack, the journey holds the promise of another kind of fortune: challenge and adventure. But what he finds in the wild north is something far more sinister than he could ever have imagined: kidnapping and slavery, the murderous nature of desperate men, and, amidst it all, supernatural beasts of the wilderness that prey upon the weakness in men’s hearts.

Acclaimed writers Christopher Golden and Tim Lebbon, along with illustrator Greg Ruth, have crafted a masterful tale both classic and contemporary, a gripping original story of the paranormal in the tradition of the great Jack London.

I really enjoyed Jack London’s THE CALL OF THE WILD and WHITE FANG growing up when I was on my classics run. I thought the books were really cool and since I was also just getting into my wolf phase at the time, the two books greatly contributed to that phase.

So I was really interested when I saw this book and picked it off the shelf.

Reading it, it’s definitely solid. I like the action and adventure themes. They’re definitely there, but for some reason I can’t fully get into it. It feels like I’m just watching from the outside.

You know, sometimes people don’t get it when I say that.

What I mean is–the best books feel like I know the characters, like they’re real and not just words on a page. Because when you think about it, they really are not just words on a page. They’re a story. They’re people. The word they’re in, the things they go through, they all feel real.

But some books, I just can’t feel that way. I feel like I’m just watching from the outside, like those people and worlds and journeys are just words on a page. It’s sad because some people I’ve met think that that is all that there is to reading.

On the good side of this book though, like I said, this book is solid. All the elements are there. It’s like the puzzle looks like it fits, but in reality–you’ve just stuck the pieces that look like they go together. If you just adjust the pieces in this book a bit, it could be amazing. But it wasn’t quite there.

Nevertheless, this book was quite enjoyable for me and I had a lot of fun with it. Definitely for more mature middle-grade readers. 3.5 stars.

pg count for the hardback: 348

Series: The Secret Journeys of Jack London


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