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White Fang (Puffin Classics) First Edition Edition

1,186 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1858137407
ISBN-10: 1858137403
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 2-4–London's novel portrays the interior life of mistreated part-wolf White Fang while exploring the fundamental nature of wild animals and the brutality inherent in vast Alaskan landscapes and inside men's hearts. It does not seem suitable reading material for primary-grade children, and Lutin's picture-book adaptation does not make an effective argument for the attempt. From the first page, in which White Fang's half-dog mother runs with her mate, One-Eye, Lutin falters; London revels in detailing natural impulses and viciousness, but this adaptation betrays his text with a ludicrous statement about the pair's love for one another. Later pages similarly fail to capture the spirit of London's harsh study of instinct and domestication. Guilloppe's visually arresting illustrations may appeal to some comic-book fans, and several spreads effectively use striking silhouettes to convey menace and action without gruesome detail. But overall, the digital artwork's strong lines and vivid colors feel disappointingly flat, lacking the nuance and delicate power of a natural landscape. While the adaptation glosses over many troubling and violent subplots, like initial owner Gray Beaver's descent into alcoholism and White Fang's repeated beatings and deadly dog fights, Lutin includes two gunshots. Many readers enjoy stories of nature, wilderness, and survival; books by Jean Craighead George, Gary Paulsen, and Roland Smith should more than suffice until they choose to explore Jack London's savage classics unchanged.–Robbin E. Friedman, Chappaqua Library, NYα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Gr. 6-8. Ed Young, whose haunting illustrations of the wolf made his Caldecott- winning Lon Po Po (1989) so memorable, was well chosen as the illustrator for the Scribner Illustrated Classics edition of White Fang. Jack London's 1906 novel. As many will remember, London tells the story of a wolf-dog who endures great cruelty before he comes to know human kindness. The 12 pastel illustrations illuminate the text with their dramatic use of light and dark, sensitively delineated forms, and soft, subtle shades of color. A handsome new edition of a longtime favorite. Carolyn Phelan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: Puffin Classics
  • Paperback: 271 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin; First Edition edition (November 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1858137403
  • ISBN-13: 978-1858137407
  • ASIN: 0140366679
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,186 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #536,233 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

75 of 83 people found the following review helpful By Cheryl Koopmann on January 6, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition
This is a great story that I have read many times. It is one of those books that I fall back on when I need a comforting story to read.
It follows the life of one poor dog as he moves from one master to another, and even ends up as a fighting dog at one point. Its a bit like "Black Beauty" I guess seeing as it follows an animals life, but white fang is more of a story. White Fang is not just some docile horse but a real wild dog that has survived where others haven't. A great read and a great story.
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64 of 71 people found the following review helpful By Paul McGrath on December 3, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a boy I used to love books like this, about untamed nature and woodlore and woodcraft, but it has been many years since I've read them. I recently had the occasion to revisit this excellent novel, and found that it has aged quite well and is still a terrific read.

The story has to do with a wolf named White Fang, and begins before he was born, with his father and mother leading a pack in the dead of winter in the frozen Canadian wilderness. There is no game around and all are starving. They harass and harry a beleaguered dog-sled team over the course of several days, picking the dogs off one by one, then finally surrounding the one remaining man. He builds a ring of fire to protect himself from these ravenous wolves, but knows he soon must succumb to exhaustion. He notices the she-wolf, sitting patiently outside the ring, seemingly indifferent--except for the string of drool coming out of her mouth in anticipation of making a meal out of him.

That is the lesson here, in this story of White Fang. It is a savage world, a world in which you either kill or are killed, eat or are eaten. His first day out of the den he kills and eats a small bird, then in turn is almost eaten by a hawk. He observes a porcupine roll itself into a ball to defend itself against a lynx, then observes the lynx yowl in pain after foolishly getting stung. The lynx plays another prominent role. Trying to survive a typical lean winter, White Fang's mother takes the desperate step of going to the absent lynx's den to eat its offspring. The enraged lynx later comes to their den and attacks, but with the help of a growing White Fang, they defeat it. It also becomes a meal.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Linda Linguvic HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on April 5, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Written almost of century ago by Jack London, both of these stories have truly stood the test of time. Both of them are based on London's experience in the Yukon, and both are written from the point of view of dogs.
In "The Call of the Wild", the dog Buck is kidnapped from an easy life and sold to a sled team during the Klondike Gold Rush. In spite of the numerous cruelties inflicted on him, Buck learns to survive. Eventually, he returns to the wild and to run with the wolves.
In "White Fang", the story is reversed. White Fang is three-quarters wolf and was born in the wild. Through a series of events, he is domesticated and eventually becomes a tame and loving pet.
There is much to learn in both of these stories. One thing is the way of animals and their life in the wild. Another is of the way of life in the Yukon. And of the men, both brutal and kind, who rely on the dogs to pull the sleds.
Jack London used his words well. There's an elegant cadence and a vigorous spirit. His love for the animals comes through as well as his respect for the wild forces of nature. And the theme that life changes are really possible because of environmental forces.
London didn't set out to write a story about the glorification of nature or vanishing wildlife. Indeed, during his short lifetime (1876-1916) the way of the wild was a fact of life. London just simply wrote his stories. And through his words, left a legacy of work that will continue to enrich the lives of readers for many generations to come.
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 28, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is one of my favorite books. The only other book that might be better is The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman, but Jack London has definitely outdone himself this time. It is the story about an animal who is three quarters wolf and a one quarter dog who goes from life as an indian sled dog to a fighting dog owned by a cruel man, to a loving owner who trys to show this maddened savage creature the meaning of love and kindness. What is really unique about White Fang is that it tells of what might be going on in such a creature's head. It tells of what it is like living in a den out in the wild, tells of how White Fang first comprehends the wild and what he learns aboout the law of life. It explains what his first impression of humans, and of the harsh enviorment of all the other puppies and dogs in the camp. It is beautifully written and I would suggest it to anyone who likes long, thought provoking stories about dogs and wolves and the northlands.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 17, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Two men are out in the wild of the north. Their dogs disappear as they are lured by a she-wolf and eaten by the pack. They only have three bullets left and Bill, one of the men, uses them to try and save one of their dogs.He misses and is eaten with the dog. Only Henry and two dogs are left, he makes a fire, trying to drive away the wolves. They draw in close and he is almost eaten, saved only by a company of men who were traveling nearby. The wolves are in the midst of a famine. They continue on, lead by several wolves alongside the she-wolf, and when they finally find food the pack starts to split up. The she-wolf mates with one of the wolves and has a litter of pups.Only one survives after several more famines, and he grows strong and is afeisty pup. They come to an Indian village where the she-wolf's, who is actually half-wolf, half-dog, master is. White Fang is the main character of the book. His mother was half wolf,half dog. His father was full wolf. He starts his life in the wild, but becomes more and more of a dog after he and Kiche, his mother, go to the Indian camp. He is naturally quite strong and agile, but other dogs and humans are mean to him so he turns these skills into fighting skills,becoming fierce and unloved. It is only when he meets Scott, the first human to ever show kindness to him, that his character changes and he becomes a loving dog. This book is about a wolfdog who was born and raised in the wild and has grown up to be a true hero. His first owner was an Indian named Gray Beaver who got tricked into selling him. The man who he got sold to was a crude man named Beauty Smith. Beauty beat White Fang and put him in a cage to fight other dogs. Then a man named Weedon Scott took care of White Fang. White Fang grew up to love Weedon.Read more ›
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