Martin Eden - Jack London"Wasnt he a communist?" was what a colleague of mine asked me when he'd enquired what I was reading and I told him. I didn't know this about Jack London. I didn't know anything about him apart from he'd written a book called White Fang. I found this book by chance whilst surfing Kindle Classics on Amazon.
ME (the choice of the characters name was picked by London based on its acromyn as this was semi-autobiographical) tells the tale of a merchant sailor from San Francisco who embarks on self education after a chance meeting with a middle class dandy. He immerses himself in literature, philosophy, and economics and goes on to become a writer of fiction. The novel is from 1909 but as with all good books it's themes are timeless. Martin Eden strives to throw off the class shackles that have bound him all his life only to find that the middle and upper classes are just as narrow-minded and unenlightened as the working class he is trying to escape from. It's also the tale of his love affair with the aforementioned dandies sister and society debutante Ruth Morse.
I'm glad John mentioned the bit about London being of a socialist bent because it made a lot more sense as I progressed through the book understanding Where London was coming from. Beautifully written with a great message. Free on Kindle.