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January 12, 2009
Washington, DC

Happy Birthday to Jack London born January 12, 1876! (Also celebrating birthdays this month -- Zora Neale Hurston on January 7 and Edith Wharton on January 24.)

From The Big Read Reader?s Guide to London?s The Call of the Wild, here?s Huntington Library Curator Sara S. Hodson on why London?s Klondike classic still resonates.

The Call of the Wild is a timeless book in that it?s appropriate, useful, and enjoyable to read for anyone at any age at any time. It is a book about survival, and survival is an issue for everyone no matter whether we?re surviving a day in the office, a hard day of manual labor, a bad relationship, or the Klondike without fire or food. A story of survival speaks to all of us, because it makes us look within. Would I have what it takes to survive in that kind of environment? What would happen to me? It lets you imagine yourself in that circumstance.

Looking for some folks to help you sing Happy Birthday to Mr. London? In January, The Call of the Wild is being read, discussed, and celebrated by Arts Link, Inc. (New Martinsville, WV); Dorothy Bramlage Public Library (Junction City, KS); Elko County Reading Council, Silver State Reading Association (Elko, NV); Fishtrap, Inc. (Enterprise, OR); Lewis and Clark Library (Helena, MT); Menomonie Public Library (Menomonie, WI); St. Croix Falls Public Library/Festival Theatre (St. Croix Falls, WI); and Wood Library Association (Canandaigua, NY). Check out www.neabigread.org for a schedule of events.

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