|Ohmmm||Buckle Your Seatbelt|
|To-go||Sit and Savor|
Wild by Cheryl Strayed follows a young woman as she hikes the Pacific Crest Trail while processes the trauma and loss of her childhood and early adulthood.
Wild is a book of two journeys. Both are difficult, but both require the author to continue to push through, despite the pain.
The real journey of this book is the author, Strayed, finding healing and peace after a tumultuous couple of years. At the beginning of the book, the reader believes that it’s only her mother’s death that she’s working to heal from, but in the chapters that unfold, the reader sees how this death completely unmoored Strayed and begins to understand why.
The book is a series of painful flashbacks, sometimes because the memories are sad or scary, and sometimes because the memories are so sweet, and she needs to say goodbye to these, too. She has to come to peace with the way things are, and the decisions she’s made.
This is set in contrast to her physical journey through the PCT in the mid-1990s. Not only is she fairly unprepared physically and mentally for the journey, but she’s also hiking alone, AND as a female, which all bring up their own unique sets of challenges.
But, she’s tough and she gets through because she decides to not be afraid and finish what she starts.
Dual Review: Would We Recommend It?
Maybe. If a friend was going through a tough time or was looking for a book about a journey to healing, then I would. Personally, I wish that there was more description of the actual trail she was hiking. There was a lot about what was difficult physically for her, but the antidotes of the trail, what she saw and the finer details of what she experienced were overshadowed a bit by her sore feet and the size of her backpack. I also appreciated her honesty in sharing what she’d experienced in her life, and sometimes-not-super-great-decisions she’d made, though I found her path difficult to relate to. Which, perhaps, means that I’ve lived a pretty blessed life.
Wild was a book I picked up at Confab a couple years ago because I thought it would be a good idea to own a copy of one of Cheryl Strayed’s books before I met her at the book signing.
I’m glad I picked up Wild. It was easy to gravitate towards that title with all the hype around Reese Witherspoon’s movie, but I thoroughly enjoyed the journey. We all need an escape every once in awhile, and following Cheryl on the PCT was an emotional adventure. I’d recommend it!