Friday, March 22, 2013

Book Club Friday: Wild

It's time for another Book Club Friday!  This week I'm reviewing Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed.

Summary (via goodreads):
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 have to say, this is normally not my kind of book.  I don't love personal memoirs (celebrity memoirs - something different!) and while I do love being outdoors, the idea of camping or going days on end without showering does not thrill me.  But this book had been getting good reviews so I gave it a shot anyways.

It took me a while to get into it, but once I did, I really enjoyed it.  The author was pretty open about her life leading up to the trail and her preparedness for the 1,100+ hike, which lead to some laughable moments.  I'm pretty impressed she managed to hike the entire thing alone (this is before cell phones so she was really alone.  I don't think I could have done it!

All in all a good book.  I give it 4 out of 5 stars (it made me want to go hiking which is a pretty big accomplishment).

What should I read next?


  1. I'm not sure I can identify with Cheryl's decision to hike and camp that far by herself but it definitely sounds like a life-changing experience!

  2. I do think I'd enjoy this one as well. I have read mixed reviews on it, but overall it seems people enjoy it. And I also tend to be more of a memoir person, so hearing that you're not and still enjoyed it, well makes me think I like it even more!

  3. this is on my TBR list! (thanks to oprah)

  4. This sounds similar to another memoir- I believe it's called Becoming Ophelia? I never got around to finishing it but they both seem like something I'd like to read. . . just don't have the time :(

  5. Wow what an incredible story. Sounds like an interesting read!