Saturday, July 4, 2015
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail
I didn't expect to like Wild. Something about the phrase "best-selling memoir" just turns me off. But when the book was chosen as one of the Mississauga Library System's "Raves and Faves," I was intrigued. Those are always excellent books. (I'm quite proud that all five of my Raves and Faves suggestions made the list!) Wild turned out to be nonfiction that reads like fiction - page-turning suspense, told in a clean, clear writing style.
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail is a story of perseverance and redemption. Her life unhinged, battered by loss and confusion, the author decides to undertake a wilderness backpacking expedition. This is no casual walk in the woods; she's chosen a trail for which experienced backpackers may spend a year in training and research. Strayed is completely inexperienced and almost comically unprepared - comic, that is, if the consequences of failure weren't potentially life-threatening. At several points in the book, I thought, "Well, she must survive, because she wrote this book...".
Wild is suspenseful, moving, sad, uplifting, heartrending, and joyous. I was filled with wonder at this woman's strength, tenacity, and resilience. I was left contemplating that potential in all of us. [A version of this review was originally published on wmtc.]