In her memoir “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Trail,” Cheryl Strayed recalls a 1,110 mile hiking journey of self-discovery both daunting and terrifying.
The Pacific Trail starts in the Mojave Desert and winds its way through California and Oregon, where Strayed’s journey ends. During the hike,Strayed carries all her possessions in a backpack she so ironically named Monster, considering the monster of a task she took on when she first set foot on the trail in the summer of 1995.
“Wild” offers readers an inside look at Strayed’s disarrayed life. With the death of her mother, the dissolution of her marriage, her unplanned pregnancy scare and a trial run with heroin, Strayed’s life is quite literally an open book that can be painful to read.
Though Strayed is retelling a 20-year-old story, her narrative voice is crystal clear, giving readers a chance to re-live the journey alongside her, experiencing each petrifying and exhausting moment of her 100 day hike.
For those of you who suffer from a case of wanderlust, or harbor a strong desire to break from the routine of everyday life and experience what the wilderness has to offer, this is just the book for you. If reading isn’t your favorite pastime, Strayed’s memoir has been adapted to a film with the same title; “Wild,” which is now in theaters, starring Reese Witherspoon who is up for an Academy Award for her performance as Strayed.