- Series: Thorndike Core
- Hardcover: 315 pages
- Publisher: G. K. Hall & Company (December 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 078388334X
- ISBN-13: 978-0783883342
- Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 2,944 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,549,506 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Into the Wild Hardcover – Large Print, December, 1997
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"God, he was a smart kid..." So why did Christopher McCandless trade a bright future--a college education, material comfort, uncommon ability and charm--for death by starvation in an abandoned bus in the woods of Alaska? This is the question that Jon Krakauer's book tries to answer. While it doesn'tcannotanswer the question with certainty, Into the Wild does shed considerable light along the way. Not only about McCandless's "Alaskan odyssey," but also the forces that drive people to drop out of society and test themselves in other ways. Krakauer quotes Wallace Stegner's writing on a young man who similarly disappeared in the Utah desert in the 1930s: "At 18, in a dream, he saw himself ... wandering through the romantic waste places of the world. No man with any of the juices of boyhood in him has forgotten those dreams." Into the Wild shows that McCandless, while extreme, was hardly unique; the author makes the hermit into one of us, something McCandless himself could never pull off. By book's end, McCandless isn't merely a newspaper clipping, but a sympathetic, oddly magnetic personality. Whether he was "a courageous idealist, or a reckless idiot," you won't soon forget Christopher McCandless. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
From Publishers Weekly
After graduating from Emory University in Atlanta in 1992, top student and athlete Christopher McCandless abandoned his possessions, gave his entire $24,000 savings account to charity and hitchhiked to Alaska, where he went to live in the wilderness. Four months later, he turned up dead. His diary, letters and two notes found at a remote campsite tell of his desperate effort to survive, apparently stranded by an injury and slowly starving. They also reflect the posturing of a confused young man, raised in affluent Annandale, Va., who self-consciously adopted a Tolstoyan renunciation of wealth and return to nature. Krakauer, a contributing editor to Outside and Men's Journal, retraces McCandless's ill-fated antagonism toward his father, Walt, an eminent aerospace engineer. Krakauer also draws parallels to his own reckless youthful exploit in 1977 when he climbed Devils Thumb, a mountain on the Alaska-British Columbia border, partly as a symbolic act of rebellion against his autocratic father. In a moving narrative, Krakauer probes the mystery of McCandless's death, which he attributes to logistical blunders and to accidental poisoning from eating toxic seed pods. Maps. 35,000 first printing; author tour.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top customer reviews
The author used too many 'fancy' words. I started out looking up what each word meant but gave up and 'read between the lines'. I can't say I enjoyed the quotes/ passages of books that Chris wrote in his journal either. I suppose they fit with the book but did not add much to the story, for me. I guess I was hoping for more of a travel diary.
Chris had quite the adventure. Being young, he felt he was invincible. To me, he was strong, followed his own mind, and I salute him. He had the courage to follow his dream. He fought to the end and didn't give up.
I was hoping to read more about his daily trials and tribulations. Was he able to acknowledge to himself that perhaps he should have prepped more? It was a bit risky taking so little food. The people he met before going into the wild could have been elaborated on. So little information was shared other than Chris was a 'good guy' and educated.
Chris's story resonated deeply with the author of this book. T oribook The book originated as an article wrotten for a journal for who are devoted explorers of the wilderness. However, the author, dissatisfied with the article, expanded it into a book wit great scope as well as depth. The result is a superb illumination of a man's values and subsequent choices to live life on his own terms.
I see why people are quick, perhaps eager, to judge but as a twenty-something myself; I see Chris was doing what many of us can't. He abdicated of the things we all treasure - money in a large part - and went on a personal self-discovering trip. Where many halted, he went on. Where many came back, he marched on. Where many feared; he embraced the unknown. For having dared so greatly and experienced things most of us can only imagine, I fiercely recommend the book for it's a trip we all should take one day, down the road of forgotten dream and sleeping desires, longing to be awaken.
This books is truly a gem!
Every chapter is filled with select excerpts from many of the books that Chris (aka, Alex), had with him at the time of his death, and what a series of wonderful quotes they are! Tolstoy, Thoreau and plenty of Pasternak...if one were going to expire, albeit unknowingly, what better authors to fill your mind with on that ultimate adventure and voyage. Krakauer has that rare gift of writing that places the reader directly into the subjects life and leaves one feeling as if they were somehow present for every action and even taken, no matter how mundane, and this book is a most perfect example.
Most recent customer reviews
Unfortunately, Chris's story is pretty limited in this book.Read more