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Kazan-The Wolf Dog represents yet another nature classic from the great natural history writer, James Oliver Curwood. The present text tells the tale of a quarter-strain wolf and three-quarters husky" torn between the call of the wild and his human mate.James Oliver "Jim" Curwood (June 12, 1878 - August 13, 1927) was an American action-adventure writer and conservationist. His books were often based on adventures set in the Yukon or Alaska and ranked among the top-ten best sellers in the United States in the early 1920s, according to Publishers Weekly. At least eighteen motion pictures have been based on or directly inspired by his novels and short stories; one was produced in three versions from 1919 to 1953. At the time of his death, Curwood was the highest paid (per word) author in the world.Curwood was born in Owosso, Michigan, the youngest of four children. Attending local schools, Curwood left high school before graduation. He passed the entrance exam to the University of Michigan and was allowed to enroll in the English department, where he studied journalism.After two years, Curwood quit college to become a reporter, moving to Detroit for work. In 1900, he sold his first story, while working for the Detroit News-Tribune. By 1909 he had saved enough money to travel to the Canadian northwest, a trip that inspired his wilderness adventure stories. Because his novels sold well, Curwood could afford to return to Owosso and live there. He traveled to the Yukon and Alaska for several months each year for more inspiration. He wrote more than thirty adventure books.By 1922, Curwood had become very wealthy from the success of his writing. He fulfilled a childhood fantasy by building Curwood Castle in Owosso. Constructed in the style of an 18th-century French chateau, the estate overlooked the Shiawassee River. In one of the homes' two large turrets, Curwood set up his writing studio. He also owned a camp in a remote area in Baraga County, Michigan, near the Huron Mountains, as well as a cabin in Roscommon, Michigan.Curwood was an avid hunter in his youth; however, as he grew older, he became an advocate of environmentalism. He was appointed to the Michigan Conservation Commission in 1927. The change in his attitude toward wildlife is expressed in a quote from The Grizzly King: "The greatest thrill is not to kill but to let live."In 1927, while on a fishing trip in Florida, Curwood was bitten on the thigh by what was believed to have been a spider, and he had an immediate allergic reaction. Health problems related to the bite escalated over the next few months as an infection developed. He died in Owosso at the age of 49, and was interred in Oak Hill Cemetery there in a family plot.Curwood's adventure writing followed in the tradition of Jack London. Curwood set many of his works in the wilds of the Great Northwest and often used animals as lead characters (Kazan; Baree, Son of Kazan, The Grizzly King, and Nomads of the North). Many of Curwood's adventure novels also feature romance as primary or secondary plot consideration. This approach gave his work broad commercial appeal; his novels ranked on several best-seller lists in the early 1920s. His most successful work was his 1920 novel, The River's End. The book sold more than 100,000 copies and was the fourth best-selling title of the year in the United States, according to Publishers Weekly Curwood's short stories and other pieces were published in various literary and popular magazines throughout his career. His bibliography includes more than 200 such articles, short stories, and serializations. His work was also published in Canada and the United Kingdom. Some of his books were translated into French, Italian, Russian, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Finnish and Polish, and published in those respective countries.