Charles Arrowby, leading light of England's theatrical set, retires from glittering London to an isolated home by the sea. He plans to write a memoir about his great love affair with Clement Makin, his mentor, both professionally and personally, and amuse himself with Lizzie, an actress he has strung along for many years. None of his plans work out, and his memoir evolves into a riveting chronicle of the strange events and unexpected visitors-some real, some spectral-that disrupt his world and shake his oversized ego to its very core.For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
"A maritime classic acclaimed for its exciting adventure, The Sea Wolf offers a thrilling tale of life at sea, while exploring the many difficulties that may erupt on board a ship captained by a brutally hedonistic and controlling individual. Additionally, the psychological adventure novel covers several themes including mutiny, existentialism, individualism, brutality, and the intrinsic will to survive.The novel sets into motion when its protagonist, the soft and cultivated scholar Humphrey van Weyden, is witness to a precarious collision between his ferry and another ship. Consequently, the accident causes the ferry to sink and sets Weyden adrift in the San Francisco Bay, but before long, he is picked up by a seal-hunting vessel headed for Japan. As Weyden finds himself aboard the Ghost, he is promptly greeted by its vile captain, Wolf Larson. An autodidact sailor, Larson is presented as a pitiless and single-minded individual, who rules over his crew with the help of his extraordinary physical strength and the pure terror he emits. Accordingly, he brushes aside Weyden’s request to be taken ashore, and instead forces him into the position of cabin boy, which is accompanied by menial work and contact with the similarly brutal crew. As Weyden spends time on board the vessel, he comes to learn some of the captain’s enigmatic philosophies, which include survival of the fittest, a disregard for the human soul, an individualistic stance, and a life guided by the acquisition of pleasure alone. Left with the choice to either work or die, Weyden must endure terrifying ordeals aboard the ship, which incidentally never seem to diminish. Furthermore, he must grow from his cowardly idealistic ways if he is to even stand a chance at life among the crew, let alone escape from the grasps of the despotic Larson.London’s vivid portrayal of his most memorable character, Wolf Larson, will most definitely entice the reader to learn more about his cynical incentives and his complex set of ideas. Moreover, Larson has the strange ability to rouse sympathy from the audience with his highly defined masculinity and philosophies, which at times may just outshine his decadence. A novel certain to enthrall with it never-ending supply of action, The Sea Wolf is the perfect pick for those longing to set on a more dangerous voyage."
Vagrant deckhand, socialist, gold-digger and alcoholic, Jack London died, burntout, at the age of forty. "The Sea-Wolf" is based on his own brutal experiences on a sea-hunting voyage in a world where 'might is right and weakness is wrong.'