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Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific…
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Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail (2012)

by Cheryl Strayed

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,3402641,627 (3.92)257
  1. 91
    A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson (ominogue)
  2. 00
    Almost Somewhere: Twenty-Eight Days on the John Muir Trail by Suzanne Roberts (Alphawoman)
  3. 00
    Becoming Odyssa: Adventures on the Appalachian Trail by Jennifer Pharr Davis (booklove2)
    booklove2: A very memorable account of a young woman hiking the Appalachian Trail by herself! Inspiring!
  4. 00
    Eat, Sleep, Ride: How I Braved Bears, Badlands, and Big Breakfasts in My Quest to Cycle the Tour Divide by Paul Howard (sboyte)
    sboyte: Human-powered journeys through the mountains of North America.
  5. 00
    The Cactus Eaters: How I Lost My Mind-and Almost Found Myself-on the Pacific Crest Trail (P.S.) by Dan White (clif_hiker)
  6. 17
    Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert (Darcie2013)
    Darcie2013: Like Eat, Pray, Love, Wild is about a woman who has gone through life-changing events and has realized she no longer knows who she is. In both books, the author decides that through travel she may find herself.
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Showing 1-5 of 258 (next | show all)
Review in 25 words or less: The author takes a long and arduous hike to help herself recover from her recent divorce and her mother's death.

I picked up "Wild" yesterday, and in the intervening 28 hours, have done little but read it. Compulsive, intimate, descriptive, agonizing, Cheryl Strayed has used her considerable skill with prose to bring the reader down with her to her worst moments, and to the summit with her, when she is literally and figuratively on the mountain-top.

Ravaged by the too-young and sudden death of her mother, assuaging her grief with anonymous sex, heroin, and the ruination of her marriage, Ms. Strayed takes the almost-ridiculous decision to hike 1,100 miles of the Pacific Coast Trail from California to Oregon. She is completely unprepared for the rigours of the trail, underfunded, over-packed, in hiking boots a size too small, and yet she soldiers on. Bears, rattlesnakes, bleeding feet, the loss of most of her toenails, thirst, hunger, the weight of her terrible backpack; she keeps going. During her trip she endures the heat of the Mojave Desert, over 100 degrees F, and wakes up to snow at another juncture.

Ms. Strayed's journey, physically, is almost unbelievable. I could not have done it, not on those mountains, not with those heights, and the endless climbing up and scrabbling down. I would be paralyzed with vertigo, and I feared for her through the entire book. For many years I have contemplated taking a long walk, a monumentally long one, but not along a trail like this. I admire both the book and the guts and the oomph it took to get her through the journey.

It's great reading. I love books about walking tours, and this is one of the best. Recommended for anyone who loves personal battles, travel writing, or who dreams of hiking alone. ( )
  ahef1963 | Jul 26, 2015 |
Based on a true story, Cheryl's incredible courage is indeed very inspiring. You live her journey from 'lost' to 'found' with her, experiencing her lows and highs, worrying when she faces dangers and smiling when she bags small successes. Somehow, Cheryl's belief in herself makes you believe in yourself. The way she pushes her limits makes you feel you can do it too. The parallel narrative of her past make for an equally compelling story, pulling you in and taking you along. A great book and a must-read, especially for women! ( )
  PiyushiDhir | Jul 24, 2015 |
I couldn’t describe it better than the book description, so … “A powerful, blazingly honest memoir: the story of an eleven-hundred-mile solo hike that broke down a young woman reeling from catastrophe—and built her back up again.

At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother's death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life: to hike the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State—and to do it alone. She had no experience as a long-distance hiker, and the trail was little more than “an idea, vague and outlandish and full of promise.” But it was a promise of piecing back together a life that had come undone.

Strayed faces down rattlesnakes and black bears, intense heat and record snowfalls, and both the beauty and loneliness of the trail. Told with great suspense and style, sparkling with warmth and humor, Wild vividly captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddened, strengthened, and ultimately healed her.”

I loved this book! By the end I was cheering for Cheryl to finish.
( )
  ChristineEllei | Jul 14, 2015 |
I can see why this book appeals so tremendously to Americans:
It's a story of a second chance that everyone deserves, of a woman who cleans up the mess she has made by cleansing herself, i.e. too much hybris countered by hundreds of miles (and 6 toenails) of catharsis), of a grieving daughter whom an outstanding personal and natural experience finally allows to let go.
And finally, it is a book of a feat that is extraordinary only so much that everyone admires it, but secretly think they could somehow do it themselves if they wanted to.
So many different varieties of American dreams and values are being met by this book and make this book a bestseller. Not the style or the content, unfortunately, since I'm not American myself...
  Kindlegohome | Jul 10, 2015 |
Fantastic, inspiring story. Five stars without a doubt. Full review to follow soon. ( )
  chimocho | Jul 7, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 258 (next | show all)
It’s not very manly, the topic of weeping while reading. Yet for a book critic tears are an occupational hazard. Luckily, perhaps, books don’t make me cry very often — I’m a thrice-a-year man, at best. Turning pages, I’m practically Steve McQueen.

Cheryl Strayed’s new memoir, “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail,” however, pretty much obliterated me. I was reduced, during her book’s final third, to puddle-eyed cretinism. I like to read in coffee shops, and I began to receive concerned glances from matronly women, the kind of looks that said, “Oh, honey.” It was a humiliation.

To mention all this does Ms. Strayed a bit of a disservice, because there’s nothing cloying about “Wild.” It’s uplifting, but not in the way of many memoirs, where the uplift makes you feel that you’re committing mental suicide. This book is as loose and sexy and dark as an early Lucinda Williams song. It’s got a punk spirit and makes an earthy and American sound.
 
A candid, inspiring narrative of the author’s brutal physical and psychological journey through a wilderness of despair to a renewed sense of self.
added by sturlington | editKirkus Reviews (Dec 19, 2011)
 
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Wild (2014IMDb)
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Epigraph
Dedication
For Brian Lindstrom

And for our children, Carver and Bobbi
First words
(Prologue) The trees were tall, but I was taller, standing above them on a steep mountain slope in northern California.
My solo three-month hike on the Pacific Crest Trail had many beginnings.
Quotations
The universe, I'd learned, was never, ever kidding. It would take whatever it wanted and it would never give it back.
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A powerful, blazingly honest, inspiring memoir: the story of a 1,100 mile solo hike that broke down a young woman reeling from catastrophe--and built her back up again.

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