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Knopf, 2012, 315 pages

At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything after her mother’s death, her family’s dissolution, and the end of her marriage. Four years later, on a whim, she decided to hike the Pacific Crest Trail and to do it alone. If she could do this, she could maybe learn to put the pieces of her life together. All this without any long-distance hiking experience.

The Pacific Crest Trail is an eleven-hundred-mile trail that begins in the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon and ends in Washington State. It goes through desert, forest, mountains, valleys,

In Wild, Cheryl Strayed bears her soul of how she became dangerously addicted to heroin and sex with strangers. How her mourning of her mother see-saws between despair and loneliness to anger and spite. How her mother left her father when Strayed was only a child, because her father beat his wife.

Not only did Strayed have to face down the skeletons in her closet and all of the pain in her life, she had to hike through intense heat and record snowfalls and face rattlesnakes and bears. She also had to deal with carrying. At the end, she is utterly transformed and is healed because of the trail.

I had only just begun. I was three weeks into my hike, but everything in me felt altered. I lay in the water as long as I could without breathing, along in a strange new land, while the actual world all around me hummed on.

Wild was an incredible story. Strayed writes with such openness and humour, I became so immersed. The trail is a beautiful, but unforgiving place, but it’s also a place to heal your wounds. I think anyone who has had a rough period in their life or has lost anyone close with relate to Strayed’s story and take comfort in her insight.

Rating:

{  } Pretty bad
{  } Tolerable
{  } All right
{  } Exciting
{x} Enthralling

Book 50 out of 60

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