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Into the Wild (1996)

by Jon Krakauer

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
16,192419271 (3.88)1 / 388
In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. His name was Christopher Johnson McCandless. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter. How McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild.… (more)
  1. 70
    Walden by Henry David Thoreau (arztriper)
  2. 51
    Walden / Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau (thiagobomfim)
    thiagobomfim: That is a history of a boy inspired by Thoreau and his masterpiece: Wladen.
  3. 20
    Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed (sturlington)
  4. 20
    The Grizzly Maze: Timothy Treadwell's Fatal Obsession with Alaskan Bears by Nick Jans (stephmo)
    stephmo: Both books deal with idealists and end in Alaska. Both stories present a certain mythology available only from the Alaskan wilderness.
  5. 31
    Eiger Dreams: Ventures Among Men and Mountains by Jon Krakauer (Ronoc)
  6. 10
    Finding Everett Ruess: The Life and Unsolved Disappearance of a Legendary Wilderness Explorer by David Roberts (amyblue, bluepiano)
    amyblue: Both books attempt to solve the mystery of how a young man disappeared in the wilderness on a quest for beauty and an authentic life.
    bluepiano: Another young Yank who died in the wilderness whilst on a impassioned private quest.
  7. 21
    Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster by Jon Krakauer (sturlington)
  8. 10
    Sukkwan Island by David Vann (raton-liseur)
    raton-liseur: Il peut paraître étrange de rapprocher ces deux livres. Pourtant ils sont entrés en résonance lorsque je les ai lus à un an d’intervalle. Tous les deux sont sombres puisqu’il y est question de mort, et tous les deux ont pour fond la beauté rude des paysages glacials de l’Alaska. C’est cette confrontation fatale entre le blanc de la neige et le noir de la mort qui m’a saisie dans ces deux livres, même si les raisons qui sous-tendent ces deux quêtes vers les paysages du Grand Nord sont (à première vue) sans point commun.… (more)
  9. 10
    The Autobiography of a Super-Tramp by W. H. Davies (Polaris-)
  10. 10
    The Golden Spruce: A True Story of Myth, Madness, and Greed by John Vaillant (Anonymous user)
  11. 00
    Drop City by T. C. Boyle (suniru)
  12. 00
    Cold Burial: A True Story of Endurance and Disaster by Clive Powell-Williams (bluetongue)
  13. 00
    American Nomads: Travels with Lost Conquistadors, Mountain Men, Cowboys, Indians, Hoboes, Truckers, and Bullriders by Richard Grant (cwflatt)
  14. 11
    Hunger by Knut Hamsun (nilsr)
  15. 55
    On the Road by Jack Kerouac (thiagobomfim)
  16. 00
    Scenes in America Deserta by Reyner Banham (nilsr)
  17. 01
    Off the Map by Hib (Anonymous user)
  18. 01
    Arctic Daughter: A Wilderness Journey by Jean Aspen (suniru)
  19. 24
    The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger (Graphirus)
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English (391)  Italian (6)  Spanish (6)  German (4)  French (3)  Dutch (3)  Portuguese (Portugal) (2)  Finnish (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (417)
Showing 1-5 of 391 (next | show all)
My mother gave me this book in 1997 and I began to read it almost immediately until I finished the first part. The subject matter hit way to close to home and I thought I would try again soon after. That was 25 years ago and I read the book in one day. I was close in age to Chris McCandless and like him, ran Cross County in High School and traveled extensively before age 30. This book and story is an ageless examination of exploration of youth and looking for answers in early adult life. ( )
  John_Hughel | Jul 10, 2022 |
I have to unstick my eyes from the back of my head on this one. The eye rolling actually hurt.

Straight up good stuff - The writing in this is impeccable. Krakauer is an incredible writer. Unlike many nonfiction authors, he never talks down to his audience. Keep up or get left behind. I love that.

OTOH. Feeling an affinity with your subject matter, especially when it is a person who is reviled, can go very wrong. [b:The Last Victim: A True-Life Journey into the Mind of the Serial Killer|488644|The Last Victim A True-Life Journey into the Mind of the Serial Killer|Jason M. Moss|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1344266178l/488644._SY75_.jpg|476906] is a perfect example of how wrong it can go. Sometimes it goes splendidly. [b:In Cold Blood|168642|In Cold Blood|Truman Capote|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1424931136l/168642._SY75_.jpg|1940709] is the perfect example of an excellent writer finding a horrible path and following it. The perfect true crime book ensues.

A lot of people admired McCandless and what he tried to do in Alaska. I was not one of those people. I thought he was an incredibly immature and selfish individual. But, I was willing to have my mind changed.

Nope. The biggest problem I had with the book is Krakauer's need to convince me that McCandless was a good kid. He was smart and he did almost everything right. He just needed a good map and he didn't have one.

There are so many things wrong with this. The kid was playing at living outdoors. He was living in a bus with a stove. This is not survivalist and he should not be admired for his half-baked plan to "live peacefully in nature". Nature isn't peaceful. It wants to kill you, eat you and then break your bones down for fertilizer.

This irritates me the most: McCandless mourned not making use of all of the moose he killed. So what are the wolves and bear that feasted upon it later? Those maggots are part of the food chain too. Birds find them delicious! Buuut, I guess they just passed on by and didn't make use of that moose.

This is why I eye-roll so hard at people who say "Use every part of the animal." Like humans are all that matter. Don't worry, it will get used. But no, he then went on to eat only lean meat animals. Good going kid. This is what I mean by immature and selfish. You can't see beyond the end of your own nose and you take it to the same kind of extreme that leads to the opposite kind of behavior.

Also, I will never go near another book that describes mountain climbing in detail ever again. I don't see the need to scale frozen cliffs. Other people do and that's just fine. I don't want to read about it. It's boring. For me it's like watching paint dry. I'd rather reread Milton than read anything about mountain climbing. And I really, really hate Milton. ( )
  rabbit-stew | Jun 26, 2022 |
Wow, what a story. I have such mixed emotions on it. Sure, the ending of this young man's life was tragic but he died doing something he really wanted to do. I feel for his family and friends who loved him. I do feel bad that he was so close to making it out but died anyway. He lived a good couple of years doing what he wanted without any ties. Maybe it is the military brat in me, but that does hold a bit of an appeal even though I have now planted roots.
This was a well written and investigated piece into the travelogue of this young man. ( )
  KyleneJones | Apr 25, 2022 |
I have found the hoop-la sounding this book to be a bit ridiculous. An OK story about a (maybe) dysfunctional family unit and the son that take steps to break out of the cycle. ( )
  ColleenLVE | Apr 13, 2022 |
Moving and thoughtful account of the short life of Chris McCandless which interestingly dissects the need for adventure that drove him. The author does a great job of piecing together the elements of McCandless's life and usefully draws on his own experience as well. ( )
  whatmeworry | Apr 9, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 391 (next | show all)
Christopher McCandless's life and his death may have been meaningless, absurd, even reprehensible, but by the end of "Into the Wild," you care for him deeply.
 
Mr. Krakauer has taken the tale of a kook who went into the woods, and made of it a heart-rending drama of human yearning.
 

» Add other authors (24 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Krakauer, Jonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ferrari, LauraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Franklin, PhilipNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mijn, Aad van derTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Molinier, ChristianTraductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Palma, Maria HelenaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Soares, Pedro MaiaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zung, SabrinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Jim Gallien had driven four miles out of Fairbanks when he spotted the hitchhiker standing in the snow beside the road, thumb raised high, shivering in the gray Alaska dawn.
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The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. His name was Christopher Johnson McCandless. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter. How McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild.

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