Book Review: Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer


I purchased Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer after reading a quote from a friend posted on social media. I can't remember what the quote said but it resonated with me. I ordered this book on a whim, and didn't really read what it was about until it showed up in the mail. It's a National Best Seller…has to be good right? The front cover reads:

"In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mr. McKinley. His name was Christopher Johnson McCandless. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter…"

Whoah, that's some heavy shit man. Needless to say, this book quickly went to the book shelf and sat. For months. There was no way I could read this book while pregnant and my intuition was right. The only good thing about this book is that you know what to expect out of the ending. So no slaps in the face on that last hard left turn.

Chris lived a life after college that leaves me quite perplexed: WHY go into the Final Frontier with NO provisions, NO gear, NO maps, NO plan and NO back up plan?? It was entirely too much to wrap my head around why anyone would want to live a life as a transient vagabond, hitchhiking, never knowing where your next meal is, no where to shower…this does not appeal to me whatsoever. I don't care what kind of beautiful things you will see in your travels. Not for me.

The book was eventually turned into a movie of the same name. If you would like to read more about Chris AKA Alexander Supertramp, there's a website in his honor that shows the images found on his camera during his travels, bio info and other goodies.

It seems like most either fell in love with this story or had a huge dislike. The entire time I could only think of how his mother must feel…not know where your grown son is for YEARS and then out of the blue you get a visit from family stating your son is dead. And as a mother to a son myself, I pray hard that he does not feel the same calling to wonder the wilderness and risk life for some self discovery mission.

This book was a read that I could not put down, I just did not like how it made me feel at the end. I was extremely frustrated with his lack of commonsense and how close he was from not dying had a few tiny things fell into place differently.

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  1. Wow! I have heard of the book title but didn't know what it was about. My mouth is still hanging open. As the mother of a son, I would be feeling helpless too. Thanks for sharing, Gabrielle. Visiting from This Momma's Meandering Mondays.

    1. My son is only 5 months and the hours of sleep deprivation, pumping, etc. to ensure he's a happy healthy person when he grows into an adult…only to have him turn around and tramp around the wilderness with no precautions is just heart wrenching! The worst was that Chris was found laying in the sleeping bag his mom made him from his childhood… :(

  2. I'm an English teacher; thanks for promoting literacy.
    Thanks for coming to the Inspire Me Monday Linky party. I'm Janice, one of your hostesses.


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