Transported from the tropics by Jack London

Radio 4 broadcast an excellent profile yesterday of Jack London (London Calling) by the novelist Aminatta Forna. She had picked up White Fang as a child in Sierra Leone, she said, only because she was fond of dogs and the book’s central character was a wolf. But she was carried away by London’s gift for conjuring a sense of place, for capturing the look, the smell and the feel of a landscape: “There I was in tropical West Africa, in 30-degrees heat, reading about the snow-covered landscapes… of North America, and almost shivering on my bed because of that feeling that London managed to evoke of men in the elements in sub-zero temperatures trying to stay alive.”

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