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Review: Into the Wild

July 21, 2016

Into the Wild

Chris McCandless grew up in a fairly comfortable home and graduated from Emory University with honors in 1990.  Idealistic and frustrated with society, McCandless cut ties with his family, gave away all of his money, and headed to Alaska to live off the land.  He felt well prepared even though he took few provisions as he walked into the Alaskan wilderness.  Almost four months later, he was found dead in an abandoned bus.

Jon Krakauer retraces McCandless’s steps in the book Into The Wild.  As usual, I found Krakauer’s research to be extensive and his writing to be engaging.  I liked this book a great deal but don’t think I liked it as much as I have Krakauer’s other books.  I think it may have been the subject matter or maybe it was the fact that, even though Krakauer explored it, I just couldn’t understand McCandless’s motivation.  Still, I found McCandless to be interesting and I thought the book was well worth reading.

Philip Franklin does a terrific job narrating the audio version of Into The Wild.  I think his narration is well suited for non-fiction books.

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20 Comments leave one →
  1. July 21, 2016 4:44 am

    I think I never read this but I do think Krakauer is really good. (notice I said I “think” I never read this – the memory isn’t what it used to be LOL)

  2. Diane permalink
    July 21, 2016 8:22 am

    I saw the movie but didn’t read the book. I felt the same way about Strayed in Wild, I don’t understand what compels some to do the things they do. I’m not one to venture off and be daring😁😁😁

  3. July 21, 2016 9:24 am

    I can’t remember if I have read Krakauer. It’s not my favorite kind of memoir/biography. But he’s obviously very popular.

  4. July 21, 2016 10:00 am

    I could never do what McCandless did but I’m still intrigued. Krakauer’s books seem to read like novels.

  5. July 21, 2016 11:37 am

    I’d never heard of this one. It does sound interesting.

  6. July 21, 2016 12:58 pm

    I read this book (I enjoy Krakauer) and also saw the film. One of those rare cases where I liked the movie better, maybe for the nature scenes… because like you, I couldn’t get into McCandless’ head and understand his motives clearly. I did to a certain extent– he wanted freedom from family, money and society– but the length to which he went is “fact stranger than fiction”. Thanks for a good review.

  7. July 21, 2016 1:15 pm

    I’ve had this on my list for a few years now but haven’t read it yet.

  8. Patty permalink
    July 21, 2016 4:00 pm

    This is an old one!

  9. July 22, 2016 12:49 am

    I remember being really moved by the film.

  10. July 22, 2016 10:19 am

    This was the one made into a movie, I think. I remember the movie. The book sounds interesting.

  11. July 22, 2016 2:55 pm

    I don’t understand going on your own into a wilderness with so many unknowns. I wonder what motivates people to do that. Glad to hear it was a good audio.

  12. bookingmama permalink
    July 22, 2016 6:12 pm

    I’m not sure this one is for me. Seems like I probably wouldn’t relate very much to the book but I’d probably learn a thing or two.

  13. July 23, 2016 9:40 am

    I have this on my TBR and because I think Krakauer is pretty incredible at everything he does, I’ll definitely read it at some point.

  14. July 23, 2016 9:53 am

    I’ve seen the movie but haven’t read the book. As you recommend, I think I’ll look up the audio version. Yes, sounds like one good book to listen to while driving. Thanks for posting this.

  15. Ryan permalink
    July 23, 2016 9:53 pm

    For some reason, I never realized he died.

  16. July 24, 2016 1:42 pm

    Oooh… this book has been on my radar for quite some time, and as you know, I’m looking to add audiobooks to my reading routine. This sounds like a perfect fit!

  17. The Cue Card permalink
    July 26, 2016 3:02 pm

    Oh yeah, read the book & saw the movie (well worth it). It’s a haunting and sad tale.

  18. July 26, 2016 7:58 pm

    I wasn’t a huge fan of this book either. Loved the research and loved learning more about it but something was still missing overall.

  19. July 27, 2016 11:27 pm

    I think you mean Into the Wild in the text of your post 🙂
    I haven’t read this one but have enjoyed a few of his others.

  20. July 29, 2016 1:19 pm

    Chris’ sister Carrine published a book The Wild Truth a few years ago that gives more details about her life & Chris’ growing up, and may shed some light on Chris’ motivations. (I haven’t read either book.) Krakauer wrote an introduction to The Wild Truth .

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