Jack London (1876-1916) is one of outstanding writers in modern American literature. His literary talent has delighted the reader on over the world. He is best remembered as the author of The Call of the Wild, Iron Heel, Love of life, White Fang and over fifty other literary works. Some of his works have been translated into Vietnamese and very famous in VN. In that, the short story “To Build a fire” is typical work which show his talent and artistic style in the short story genre.
In the struggle with nature, he show that he was a strong man when he overcame many challenges that nature set for him. That is when he tried to build a fire 5 times in a strict weather. He managed to set a fire as soon as possible because his body gradually became nerveless, his finger could not straight out. It was incredible that he could build a fire in such condition. However, he never gave up, he tried even when he was in badly frightened mood. At the fouth times failure, though his fingers could not clutch, he overcame by pressing the wrist of the other hand against them, forcing them down upon the bunch of matches. At the last time, a thought appeared in his mind “What if the matches did burn his hand?”. To Tom Vincent, burned hands were better than dead hands, becomimg a handicapped person was better than an icy corpse. That was a hard choice but was a wise one which compensated for his unwise one when he decided to travel alone before
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