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The Scarlet Plague by Jack London
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The Scarlet Plague

10 ratings, 2 reviews

Known mainly for his tales of adventure, this work of science fiction by Jack London is set in a post-apocalyptic future. It’s 2072, sixty years after the scarlet plague has depopulated the planet. James Howard Smith is one of the few survivors of the pre-plague era left alive in the San Francisco area, and as he realizes his time grows short, he tries to impart the value of knowledge and wisdom to his grandsons. Through his narrative, we learn how the plague spread throughout the world and of the struggles of the handful of survivors it left in its wake.The Scarlet Plague was originally published in London Magazine in 1912.

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10 ratings, 2 reviews
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Russell Stahl

December 18, 2013

Very interesting, fast moving and compelling story. Great reader.

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Cyndi Cohen

May 05, 2012

The Scarlet Plague is a well-written piece of speculative fiction quite out of step with Jack London's naturalist pieces. Set in circa 2070, The story is told through the narrative of an old man relaying the tale of civilization's fall to his three grandsons who have little understanding of what the word means. It's an enticing depiction from the point of view of a California professor of literature whose commentary on the fall is thought-provoking. I definitely recommend this book for anyone who is either a Jack London fan or a fan of speculative fiction.