Listen free for 30 days

Listen with a free trial

One credit a month, good for any title to download and keep.
Unlimited listening to the Plus Catalogue - thousands of select Audible Originals, podcasts and audiobooks.
Exclusive member-only deals.
No commitment - cancel anytime.
Buy Now for £22.89

Buy Now for £22.89

Pay using card ending in
By completing your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and authorise Audible to charge your designated card or any other card on file. Please see our Privacy Notice, Cookies Notice and Interest-based Ads Notice.

Summary

When Humphrey Van Weyden finds himself struggling in the freezing waters of San Francisco Bay, he thinks the worst that can happen to him is drowning. After he is rescued by the Ghost and its captain, Wolf Larson, Humphrey discovers that there are fates far worse than death.

On Larsen's hell-ship, the dilettante hero is forced to slave as cabin boy and humble seaman. Over the seven months' voyage to the sealing grounds off Siberia, he engages in an epic duel with his ruthlessly Nietzschean skipper, a conflict that must end with the death of one of them.

In Humphrey's story, Jack London recalls his own adventures on a sealing vessel at the age of 17. And in the vivid dialogs between Larsen and Van Weyden, he gives the clearest definition of his savage philosophy of life.

Public Domain (P)2010 Tantor

What listeners say about The Sea-Wolf

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    18
  • 4 Stars
    6
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    17
  • 4 Stars
    7
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    16
  • 4 Stars
    8
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing

I heard great things of this book but they don't do it justice. A great story delivered by a captivating narrator.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Jack London' best book?

Some consider this book Jack London' best book. It is a good story, but I prefer "Call of The Wild" and "White Fang" - and the other stories from the far North.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Zeno
  • Zeno
  • 09-10-20

A great antagonist ... and too much fawning

Wolf Larsen is right up there with the best larger-than-life characters. He looms, menacingly so, in every way. Brawns, brains, you name it - he is also utterly amoral and ruthless. Killing is as much his nature as is breathing. He harms, he intimidates and kills as he sees fit. It may be out of necessity, but it may also be for the pure pleasure of cruelty and in the knowledge of the fear that instills in his crew. His actions, his thoughts, his way of looking at life, are all definitely intriguing.

But then there's literary critic Humphrey van Weyden who is lost at sea and picked up by Larsen's ship. Forced to become part of the crew, he struggles to stay alive and in time becomes a man who can fend for himself. In all this, however, Jack London gives van Weyden such an over-the-top fawning way that it is insufferable. The way he describes Larsen, his ever ripple, you'd think he falls in love with him. Then, when they pick up a woman, also lost at sea, he starts fawning over her and again, it's just way, way too much in the way he thinks about her.

You can't help but wish that Wolf Larsen comes out on top in the end. Will he? Well, wouldn't want to give it away! This novel is worth reading for the character of Wolf Larsen. London could have skipped van Weyden completely - it would have been so much better to just live with Larsen and the terrorized crew on a seal-hunter for a while.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Rebecca Bright
  • Rebecca Bright
  • 13-05-20

Great narration of Sea Wolf!

I enjoyed listening to this narration of Sea Wolf. The narrator was a great Wolf Larson and was able to move between the other characters as well.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Amazon Customer
  • Amazon Customer
  • 14-01-17

Great classic

I really enjoyed the narrator's voice for Wolf Larsen. It was confident and husky and puzzled all in the perfect proportions.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Scott
  • Scott
  • 11-08-13

Great in every way

What did you love best about The Sea-Wolf?

A true classic and the way Stephen Hoye read it was perfect.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Sea-Wolf?

Wolf Larson is an amazing creation.

What about Stephen Hoye’s performance did you like?

His voice doesn't distract at all. His many voices and accents were perfect throughout.

Any additional comments?

Listen to this version!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Mike W
  • Mike W
  • 26-05-22

Great read

Very well read. Amazing story not one of life on the sea, but strong insights into human nature. At the same time a page turning adventure!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Anonymous User
  • Anonymous User
  • 23-03-22

i enjoyed it

contains some dialogue and philosophy but i found it interesting as part of their characters who are a sharp contrast in many ways. sticks to the story well though and had a tempo I liked

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for John D Brower
  • John D Brower
  • 04-03-22

excellent

this story kept me riveted the entire book. I listened to it on a whim and never regretted it.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Carol I. Meeds
  • Carol I. Meeds
  • 15-02-22

Mind challenging character and local

This was a good story with well developed and developing characters. The precise and correct use of words was an especial treat. On a seal hunting vessel, with a cruel and corrupt captain, . One appreciates the foppish young man as he develops and also the cruel captain for his skills Abd knowledge and desire to be better. There is blood and guts and gore and adventure and thrills. Alos a time on a deserted island with beautiful woman.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Bay Area Califa
  • Bay Area Califa
  • 14-02-22

Shiver me timbers!

I was one of those East Bay residents who heard the name Jack London and started pondering which restaurant I'd choose for dinner. In Oakland, California this man's name is a meeting place ("I'll meet you at Jack London in front of the Christmas tree.")But now in my later years I worry about what I'm missing. Jack London was one of those things. So I listened carefully listened to all the samples offerings of The Seawolf, and I chose this one because of the reader's voice and rhythm.
Thank God I didn't put it off any longer. What a great story teller. What a great craftsman of characters. And he never lounges, never gives you 20 or so pages in which to catch your breath and lower your heart rate. There will be pages where he's teaching us about sailing a seal hunting ship but even there he's building tension between mates, adding growing suspicion and emotion. We remember "better watch out for that guy" and "that guy's always carrying that knife." And then, before anybody is ready for, it some storm hits or another ship raises the stakes and tests our new boy and even the regulars with threat of disaster.
I listened carefully to select Steven Hoye, and he never disappointed. This was a very physical novel to read aloud, so many elements crashing against each other. And Hoye never missed a beat. I literally forgot it was one guy after a while. The voices were so distinct. And (spoiler alert) once a woman was introduced he just dropped into her voice like second nature.
All the while I was listening, my mind drifted back occasionally to the beginning of the story, and I'd say, this guy should have been in San Francisco tonight, instead he's practically on another planet. And that is part of London's talent. He gives us a place and time that is historically true, but the environment, the world of values, language, morality, are all so far removed from the main character's home life, that he seems to have been abducted by aliens onto another planet. And so is the reader. Every time something happened that required 'normal' behavior (a wound, for example) the reader is glad to see that there is some place for conventional response and action. We breath a deep sigh to know that pockets of human kindness can still be found, though they are just hidden away behind masks of treachery.
The Seawolf is a great adventure from the very beginning to the end. Enjoy!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for KW
  • KW
  • 23-01-22

Classic Phenom

The story is forever great; the prose is pure joy! But what makes this particular version truly pleasurable is the voice artist's performance and presentation.By all accounts, it is clear he meant for this to be not just a work of literary but also one of performance art. I am grateful.