ebookclassics

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

Click to visit Cheryl Strayed's website.

Click to visit Cheryl Strayed’s website.

I listened to the audio book of Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail that was narrated by Bernadette Dunne. The movie adaptation starring Reese Witherspoon is scheduled for release in December.

* CONTAINS SPOILERS

THE STORY
At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed is at the lowest point in her life. She watched her mother die, her family fall apart, her marriage end and her self-worth evaporate in a haze of one-night stands and drug use. But Cheryl is drawn time and again to the trail guide she bought on a whim about hiking the Pacific Crest Trail and she makes the momentous decision to hike the PCT on her own. From here, Wild follows Cheryl’s journey as an inexperienced and underprepared hiker, as she discovers the grand beauty and challenges of the trail, the strangers she meets and befriends along the way, and the deep soul-searching that helps her start to love life again.

THE GOOD
Cheryl Strayed has been criticized for her ignorance going into this trip and struggling with “first world problems”, but I did think it was a brave decision and this book could inspire others who are lost to go on their own journeys of self-discovery and healing.

THE BAD
Not much really happens in this book, so it’s a bit of a bore. Cheryl looks back on the events leading up to the trip and she successfully hikes the Pacific Crest Trail. The end.

CONCLUSION
Wild is an inspiring memoir about letting go of the past, trusting yourself and using guts and determination to not only overcome physical challenges, but emotional challenges. If anything, the book made me really miss camping, hiking and just nature (can you tell I’ve been stuck at home with the kids for too long?). Overall, Wild is a good book, although I have to admit I found the Goodreads reviews a little more entertaining.

3/5 Stars

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16 comments on “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

  1. Naomi
    October 30, 2014

    I really liked this book, and didn’t find it boring at all. But, then again, I love the walking/hiking/survival thing. It really made me want to hike a trail, any trail. I’m just waiting for the kids to grow up, but once that happens I probably won’t feel like it anymore. Ha! I also thought it was a brave memoir. She really bares her soul and now the world knows her secrets (many of which I didn’t like about her at all).

    Like

  2. ebookclassics
    October 30, 2014

    Ha ha, I’ll probably want to just stay home when the kids grow up too! I agree that Cheryl was very self-absorbed and not very grateful for the good things in her life.

    Like

  3. Trish
    October 30, 2014

    We’ve ventured out with the little ones a bit but always in the comfort of a camper. My husband says he’s too old for tents now. LOL! I haven’t read the Goodreads reviews, but I can imagine. I enjoyed this one but my book club HATED it. Oh well.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      October 31, 2014

      I think I’m too old for tents now! šŸ™‚ Don’t you love when you love a book and your book club just trashes it?

      Like

  4. rivercityreading
    October 30, 2014

    This is where I do my usual thing and tell you if you haven’t read her other book, Tiny Beautiful Things, you totally should!! It’s absolutely one of my favorite books ever and even though I liked Wild, I didn’t love it (not nearly as much as I loved the other).

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      October 31, 2014

      Thanks for the recommendation, I’ll definitely check it out! Some of the reviewers on Goodreads were surprised they didn’t like Wild because they are big fans of her Dear Sugar column. I guess it’s just a matter of what she is writing about.

      Like

  5. janceewright
    October 31, 2014

    Hmmm, I remember this being really popular when it first came out. I was a page then at the local library, so I was shelving it and pulling it for holds all the time. It never really jumped out to me, but I’ve seen it so much I may have to read it.

    Have you read Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods? If so, how does that compare?

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      October 31, 2014

      I haven’t read anything by Bill Bryson, but he seems to be very popular. Is A Walk In the Woods a good place to start with his writing?

      Like

      • janceewright
        October 31, 2014

        That’s where I started. It hooked me enough to move on into his more traditional travelogue type books. If you liked the hiking element of Wild, you’ll probably like A Walk in the Woods. He’s one of my favorite nonfiction authors.

        Like

  6. Stefani @ Keep It Wordy
    November 3, 2014

    Hmm, something about this book and her internal journey drew me in, even though I would probably agree with you that not too much happens. Oh well, to each her own!

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      November 4, 2014

      I can definitely see how her bravery and journey is inspiring. Many bloggers seem to love Tiny Little Things and her Dear Sugar column, so I may give that a try next.

      Like

      • Stefani @ Keep It Wordy
        November 4, 2014

        I did really enjoy her Dear Sugar columns, so that definitely could be worth a try, but also her style might not be for everyone šŸ™‚

        Like

  7. Emily
    November 5, 2014

    I didn’t find the book boring, but I didn’t feel like there was enough self-discovery to make it a compelling memoir. The premise made it sound like she was going to come out a totally different person, but to me she seemed to end up as the same foolish, confused woman she was when she started. I don’t necessarily think she had to pretend that simply taking a challenging hike would change everything about her, but I wanted more substance.

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      November 6, 2014

      I agree that she didn’t seem to change much after her trip and I like how you use the word “substance”. I think I would have liked more of that as well.

      Like

  8. DoingDewey
    November 5, 2014

    I enjoyed Tiny LIttle Things by Strayed, so I’ll probably give this a try. I’ll be interested to also watch the movie too šŸ™‚

    Like

    • ebookclassics
      November 6, 2014

      I just started listening to Tiny Little Things and I’m quite impressed so far. I’m now sure if I will go out of my way to see Wild at the movies, but I’m sure it will be an entertaining movie.

      Like

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