The Cruise of the Snark

Front Cover
Macmillan, 1911 - Americans - 340 pages
In April 1907 Jack London set out to sail around the world in the 45-foot ship The Snark, accompanied by his wife and a small crew. Although suffering from seasickness and tropical disease, London wrote prolifically, including a series of entertaining sketches of the voyage itself. These were later collected as The Cruise of the Snark, a remarkable record of adventure and love among the islands of the South Pacific. - Publisher.

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User Review  - Bagpuss - LibraryThing

London and his wife build a yacht called ‘The Snark’ (after the Lewis Carroll poem) and after some delays they set off with a small crew to sail across the south Pacific, setting out from San ... Read full review

The cruise of the Snark

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Inspired by the stories he loved in his youth, London ventured to sail around the world. He gathered up his wife, a skeleton crew, and the manuscripts for several stories he was developing and packed ... Read full review




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Page 160 - But the slight glimpse sufficed; my eyes fell upon the disordered members of a human skeleton, the bones still fresh with moisture, and with particles of flesh clinging to them here and there!
Page xiv - You have heard the beat of the off-shore wind, And the thresh of the deep-sea rain ; You have heard the song — how long ! how long ? Pull out on the trail again ! Ha' done with the Tents of Shem, dear lass, We've seen the seasons through, And it's time to turn on the old trail, our own trail, the out trail, Pull out, pull out, on the Long Trail — the trail that is always new.
Page 78 - bitted the bull-mouthed breaker" and ridden it in, and the pride in the feat shows in the carriage of his magnificent body as he glances for a moment carelessly at you who sit in the shade of the shore. He is a Kanaka— and more, he is a man, a member of the kingly species that has mastered matter and the brutes and lorded it over creation. And one sits and thinks of Tristram's last wrestle with the sea on that fatal morning; and one thinks further, to the fact that that Kanaka has done what Tristram...
Page 170 - And now all this strength and beauty has departed, and the valley of Typee is the abode of some dozen wretched creatures, afflicted by leprosy, elephantiasis, and tuberculosis. Melville estimated the population at two thousand, not taking into consideration the small adjoining valley of Ho-o-umi. Life has rotted away in this wonderful garden spot, where the climate is as delightful and healthful as any to be found in the world.
Page 3 - The ultimate word is I LIKE. It lies beneath philosophy, and is twined about the heart of life. When philosophy has maundered ponderously for a month, telling the individual what he must do, the individual says, in an instant, "I LIKE," and does something else, and philosophy goes glimmering. It is I LIKE that makes the drunkard drink and the martyr wear a hair shirt; that makes one man a reveller and another man an anchorite; that makes one man pursue fame, another gold, another love, and another...
Page 76 - In truth, from out of the sea he has leaped upon the back of the sea, and he is riding the sea that roars and bellows and cannot shake him from its back. But no frantic outreaching and balancing is his. He is impassive, motionless as a statue carved suddenly by some miracle out of the sea's depth from which he rose. And straight on toward shore he flies on his winged heels and the white crest of the breaker. There is a wild burst of foam, a long tumultuous rushing sound as the breaker falls futile...
Page 6 - Fallible and frail, a bit of pulsating, jelly-like life - it is all I am. About me are the great natural forces - colossal menaces, Titans of destruction, unsentimental monsters that have less concern for me than I have for the grain of sand I crush under my foot.
Page 7 - ... largest crafts that float, crushing humans to pulp or licking them off into the sea and to death — and these insensate monsters do not know that tiny sensitive creature, all nerves and weaknesses, whom men call Jack London, and who himself thinks he is all right and quite a superior being. "In the maze and chaos of the conflict of these vast and draughty Titans, it is for me to thread my precarious way. The bit of life that is I will exult over them.
Page 4 - The sailing master watched me for a space. He was afraid of my youth, feared that I lacked the strength and the nerve. But when he saw me successfully wrestle the schooner through several bouts, he went below to breakfast. Fore and aft, all hands were below at breakfast. Had she broached to, not one of them would ever have reached the deck. For forty minutes I stood there alone at the wheel, in my grasp the wildly careering schooner and the lives of twentytwo men.
Page 53 - One whole afternoon I sat in the cockpit, steering with one hand and studying logarithms with the other. Two afternoons, two hours each, I studied the general theory of navigation and the particular process of taking a meridian altitude. Then I took the sextant, worked out the index error, and shot the sun. The figuring from the data of this observation was child's play. 23 In the "Epitome" and the "Nautical Almanac" were scores of cunning tables, all worked out by mathematicians and astronomers.

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