Dona's Reviews > Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

Wild by Cheryl Strayed
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Aug 10, 12

Read in August, 2012

This is a really fast read, and it's mostly compelling. It's NOT nature writing, so if you're expecting profound insights inspired by the wildlife and geography of the Pacific Crest Trail, you'll want another book. Strayed's memoir has less in common with Abbey's Desert Solitaire and Dillard's Pilgrim at Tinker Creek and more in common with Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat, Pray, Love--except Strayed was very young, poor and parentless when she chose to hike the PCT, not fairly wealthy and successful like Gilbert when she chose to leave her husband to find personal and spiritual enlightenment. I thought it was a decent book that outlined how Strayed's undertaking/journey helped her to become stable and grounded after experiencing damaging emotional abuse at a very early age--and the death of her mother and disintegration of her family at the relatively early age of 22. It's well-written and honest enough that some readers will be turned off or feel compelled to judge her for using drugs and having casual sex--or for being somewhat unprepared to hike the PCT. I would have to say that if she were male and hid her foibles, she wouldn't be judged as harshly. In my estimation, people who don't have the audacity to live authentically or to fulfill their needs and desires get judgemental and angry when someone else does and it turns out o.k. in the end.
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