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Jack London was a jailbird A hobo A sailor seal hunter pirate gold-miner laundered yachtsman and coal shoveler He was a drinker a brawler and a heavy smoker He was a husband twice and a father twice He was a socialist candidate for mayor of Oakland California He was a rancher A world-traveler A voracious reader A loyal correspondent whose collected letters fill three large volumes A lecturer whose fiery speeches ignited controversy where ever he went A journalist who covered wars and sporting events and natural catastrophes He was an author of fifty books dealing with subjects as varied as sailing boxing out-of-body experiences dogs ranching and Hawaii He wrote about gold mining and animal rights architecture and war earthquake and fire alcoholism and leprosy surfing and socialism He wrote one novel set in a prehistoric civilization another set many centuries in the future He wrote a murder mystery he wrote a short novel about a devastating disease that wipes out nearly all-human life He wrote what may be the first novelization of a movie He wrote about survival and love and loneliness about fairness and unfairness about right and wrong He exhumed our past examined our present and predicted our future And at the age of forty he was deadChild 1 Throughout Jack Londons boyhood his stepfather - a friendly gentleman - failed at a variety of occupations forcing the little family to move frequently By the time Jack was five years old he had lived in nine different housesMidlife 2 In 1905 the Londons began buying ranch land in the Valley of the Moon region near Glen Ellen California about forty miles north of San Francisco Jack had become greatly interested in agriculture and wanted to make his ranch a self-supporting communityAlthough there was an old ranch house already on the property the Londons planned to build a large stone home to be called Wolf House On August 22 1913 just
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