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The Wild Lands

3.54  ·  Rating details ·  188 ratings  ·  58 reviews
In Paul Greci's The Wild Lands, Travis and his sister are trapped in a daily race to survive--and there is no second place.

Natural disasters and a breakdown of civilization have cut off Alaska from the world and destroyed its landscape. Now, as food runs out and the few who remain turn on each other, Travis and his younger sister, Jess, must cross hundreds of miles in
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published January 29th 2019 by Imprint
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Average rating 3.54  · 
Rating details
 ·  188 ratings  ·  58 reviews

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Sara (A Gingerly Review)
2.5 stars

Why only 2.5? The ending and the constant whining of Jess. I wanted to box her ears.


Full review can be found here:

I’m not sure where to start with this one… I have said before how much I enjoy wilderness/survival stories. I always try to picture myself as the character(s) and wonder if I would be tough/brave/strong enough to survive. That is why I was excited to start this read. Another survival story (set in Alaska, no surprise there)
Feb 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, survival
If you're looking for a thrilling nail-biter of a story that also has strong characters and emotional depth, look no further than The Wild Lands.

Imagine, if you will, that climate change and oil depletion have made Alaska a wasteland that the United States government no longer wants to support. So they advise everyone to leave and abandon Alaska to its fate. Despite his Mom's misgivings, Travis' Dad convinces the family to stay, sure that they will be able to live comfortably off the land once
Jayne  Downes
Oct 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A fabulous survival story set in a futuristic Alaska which has suffered from rising seas, earthquakes and fires. A group of teens are trying to reach the coast in the hope of finding a safe place to live. They encounter so many dangers on the way; people they meet cannot be trusted- really exciting stuff and well written. The author was a teacher and now teaches outdoor education in Alaska.
Jan 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Greci has developed a world that is altogether too real and possible. Consider a near future without all the modern conveniences, basically, a return to ‘basic.’ The reader will question the character’s motivations and the paranoias simply because of how foreign this near-future world seems to be, yet Greci does a great job answering the questions he continually poses about food, water, and shelter.

Though realistic and very much true to the geography of the land, the narrative does get a bit too
Oct 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Wild Lands by Paul Greci
Alaska has been been abandoned by America after its oil resources dried up. Its been devastated by a series of natural disasters, that have left the land unfit for humanity, there's no food and the land is barron after being hit by fires, earthquakes and rising sea levels.Survivors were bused out to America but some stayed, but this was a mistake.
Some survivors are vigilantes who take what they want by force this is how Travis and his sister Jess are left orphaned. To
Apr 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
My first American home was actually out in the boonies of Alaska. In fact my, uh, "neighborhood" joked that we were "The Five Little Houses on the Tundra." Because of this, I'm extremely judgmental and picky about all things depicting Alaska.

Paul Greci has passed my test. Not only am I now homesick from reading this book, the story and characters itself were also awesome! Alaska, and quite possibly the world is burning and falling apart. Travis is trying to get his sister safely to a possible
Matthew Macnish
Jun 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I finally finished THE WILD LANDS, by Paul Greci. Absolutely gripping. Painstakingly authentic descriptions of post apocalyptic Alaska and how the land would look, and the things a group of kids has to do to survive. Think Cormac McCarthy’s THE ROAD, but YA, and thankfully slightly less disturbing. It’s clearly written by an author who has experienced the Alaska wilderness himself. Highly highly recommended. I’m no librarian but I would probably say 14 and up.
Dec 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
There's nothing really new or original about THE WILD LANDS, but it's still a compelling post-apocalyptic page-turner. The characters are sympathetic, the plot is exciting, and the prose is strong. Greci writes vividly of Alaska, creating an atmospheric setting that can be deeply felt throughout the novel. The ending is satisfying, but leaves a lot of questions that could easily lead to a sequel. While this isn't my favorite novel of its type, I found it an engrossing read.
Aug 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
So, I really liked the story and the references to my home. The references to the beetles killing our trees and the fires that destroyed out forests were very real. That being said - did NO ONE from Alaska listen to the audio version before it was released? The mispronunciation of real places is disgusting. It was distracting. I guess it is a good thing that our Alaskan population is small and the rest of the world won't even know it happened. The story is great, but I would never recommend my ...more
Olivia J
Mar 26, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019-reads
2.5 - not bad or anything, just mediocre. Not super interesting in the writing department, but a good idea nonetheless.
Steve MC
Mar 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, wilderness
The Wild Lands is one of the best YA wilderness novels I’ve read. Once things kick off, it hardly ever lets up as Travis, his younger sister Jess, and their companions cross a devastated Alaska in search of a safe place to live, and through this become a family in their own.

It’s a unique dystopian in that while the government is responsible for the fires that destroyed the forests, it’s the wilderness that’s their real challenge as they journey through valleys of barren ash, dangerous swamps,
Mar 06, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
Meh. The voice is stilted. Character development/world building is shallow. The story progression is too fast and yet it reads too slow at the same time. There isn’t enough detail to describe events, things happen off-screen with little or no explanation that force the reader to guess or infer what has happened. Concept is excellent in that it tries to create a world in crisis like Schusterman’s Dry ... but it’s missing the sense of tension that would make this an unputdownable title for teen ...more
Feb 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In his second novel, Paul Greci moves from middle grade adventures to YA post-apocalyptic survival story. THE WILD LANDS is a fast-paced novel that will ensure readers are constantly on the edge of their seats.

The signs were there: Environmental collapse. Government strain. But no one anticipated the United States would actually abandon Alaska. Not until the last bus drives away, leaving the remaining people cut off to fend for themselves. Even though his mom wanted to leave, Travis and his
Ms. Yingling
Jun 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Library copy

Travis and his family stayed in their home in Alaska after the government evacuated everyone, but this was a mistake. Not only is the government not sustaining infrastructure anymore, but they are also actively discouraging people from living there, since there is no more oil to be taken. When Travis' family starts to run out of food since there are no more fish to be caught, they try to make there way to the south. Because supplies are so scarce, people have become barbaric. The
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Melanie  Brinkman
Aug 12, 2019 added it
Shelves: own-g
In this race to survive, there is no second place.

Natural disasters and the breakdown of civilization caused the United States to destroy an abandon Alaska. Now as circumstances become even more dire, Travis and his sister, Jess, must cross hundreds of miles of wilderness filled with ravenous animals and people who have learned to shoot first and ask questions never. On their journey they meet friends and enemies alike, but do they have what it takes to survive?

A story of both man vs. nature and
Jan 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Wild Lands
The book I read this term, was the “Wild Lands”. It takes place in Alaska, but not the Alaska it used to be. The former state happened to run out of its materials. Alaska used to send things like oil, and other needs to the mainland of America. The oil was sucked dry from Alaska, and so the Government decided they didn’t want to keep giving water, electricity, food. Etc in to a place who wasn't giving anything back in return. So the Government completely abandoned Alaska and left
Cindy Bravo
Mar 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book was written by a local Fairbanks author and I found it believable. It takes place in the future, at a time when Alaska was abandoned by the United States after the state's oil reserves were completely consumed. With the increase of international conflict, the effects of climate change, and geological upheaval, Alaskan survivors were left on their own. The main characters were fleshed in human decency, but as always, when times get tough, humanity does not hesitate to prey on itself, in ...more
Beth Mendelsohn
Dec 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley-arc-s
I received this e-ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
This story takes place in the not so distant future when climate change and loss of resources has decimated Alaska to the point where it is no longer a state. Most of the glaciers have melted, earthquakes have wrecked the coastline and interior, fires have destroyed much of what was left, and the annual salmon runs have ceased. Travis (17), Jess (10), and their parents tried to stick it out when most everyone else was
Jun 14, 2019 rated it liked it
I won this in a Goodreads giveaway and I was happy to see a YA story with a male protagonist since that seems like a rare thing lately. This is an action packed, violent story about a 17 year old guy and his 10 year old sister who try to make their way through the Alaskan wilderness in a distant future (2095?) when both natural and man-made disasters have destroyed what was left of Fairbanks after the rest of the United States has abandoned Alaska. There is gruesome violence along the way but ...more
Apr 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Post-apocalyptic Young Adult book set in future Alaska

It's closing in on the end of this century and Alaska (and the rest of the world) are in dire straits. Global warming, oil depletion, horrific fires, and deadly earthquakes have caused the United States to turn its back on Alaska. Most residents were shipped out three years ago, south to the Lower 48, but some residents decided to try and make a go of it in Alaska.

This story centers on teen Travis and his younger sister, Jess as they try to
It was okay.

Bit boring, bit repetitive with some of the details.

Also wasn't wild about (yet again) another YA fiction embracing casual sexism against boys. The girls really love emphasizing that the only reason they didn't kill Travis was because of Jess. And that part where Tam is like "Oh, I still hate all guys, but I like you"- I'm sorry, I get that she has Issues with a capital I, but that's such a messed up thing to say and Travis to take as a compliment. If a guy said "yeah, I hate all
Nikki Johnston-Fisher
Apr 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
NO SPOILERS! I truly enjoyed his first book Surviving Bear Island so I was excited when this one came out. I live in Fairbanks so it was great to be able to follow along in the footsteps of Travis and his family as they traveled north and south. This book has it all and isnt just a survival book- it is full of heartache, hope, survival, love, longing, and being desperate to save your family to which you will endure anything. The extreme of emotions that I felt reading this book will stay with me ...more
Jun 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Travis and his younger sister Jess live in remote interior Alaska near what used to be Fairbanks. Set in the future, the Alaskan oil fields have run dry and the United States has abandoned -- and burned -- much of the former state. Travis’ family decided to stay and try to live off the land until the 2nd wave of fires made it impossible to grow anything and the salmon stopped returning. They set off north for the Arctic sea to try to find civilization. After a violent encounter trying to cross a ...more
Jul 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
My actual rating is 3.5, but I decided to give 4 on Goodreads because I was so impressed with the world that the author built. This book was a nail-biter (literally), and I think it would do well (possibly better!) as a movie. Like I said, the Alaskan landscape, ravaged by climate disasters and man-made fires, was incredibly detailed, and frankly sad and frightening to read about. The human interaction in this novel was fascinating to see in this quasi post-apocalyptic world, and in my opinion, ...more
Mar 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: won-in-giveaways
I received a copy of this book in a Goodreads giveaway.

I was thoroughly engrossed in this one from start to... complete, utter non-ending. I couldn't justify rating it less than four stars for the abrupt halt, because I loved the rest of it, but I really wanted to. I understand the concept of leaving the story open for continuation, but this didn't feel like it was really even at a temporary stopping place. There's no resolution for about 75% of the plot. If that's a problem for you, I would
Nov 10, 2019 rated it liked it
The book takes place in the beauty of Alaska with the start of what could be the end of the world. Travis and his sister are adventuring to safety and during the journey something unfortunate happens leaving them to travel to salvation. during this journey many unfortunate things happen but they happen so often it becomes very predictable and disappointing that it same thing keeps happening. but the story makes up for it with amazing imagery being able to see the tree's and mountains and all ...more
Charles Rene
** I received this book for free from a Goodreads Giveaway. I have done my best to keep my review unbiased. **

For a young adult novel, this was a very enthralling read. The characters grow and develop through their adventure, there are some mature themes that are dealt with in a healthy way for an audience of this age, and by the time I was done with the story, I wanted more! The main reason I gave it 4 stars instead of 5 was that the writing was very repetitive in some places, but overall, I
Jun 30, 2019 rated it liked it
I needed a book to capture my attention and keep it since it was another night for a Rock Row "concert". This book did that with the story of four teens trying to survive a post-apocalyptic Alaska which has been abandoned by the US government. Travis, Jess, Tam, and Max must try to get to the coast in hopes of finding someone still living there and a settlement they can join. Along the way, they must survive nature and other people. My only complaint was the ending which was not one. I imagine ...more
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