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Wild: A Journey from Lost to Found [Kindle Edition]

Cheryl Strayed
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (842 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Selected to be read on Radio Four's Book of the Week.

'One of the best books I've read in the last five or ten years... Wild is angry, brave, sad, self-knowing, redemptive, raw, compelling, and brilliantly written, and I think it's destined to be loved by a lot of people, men and women, for a very long time.' --Nick Hornby

At twenty-six, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother's rapid death from cancer, her family disbanded and her marriage crumbled. With nothing to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life: to walk eleven-hundred miles of the west coast of America - from the Mojave Desert, through California and Oregon, and into Washington state - and to do it alone. She had no experience of long-distance hiking and the journey was nothing more than a line on a map. But it held a promise - a promise of piecing together a life that lay in ruins at her feet.

Strayed's account captures the agonies - both mental and physical - of her incredible journey; how it maddened and terrified her, and how, ultimately, it healed her. Wild is a brutal memoir of survival, grief and redemption: a searing portrayal of life at its lowest ebb and at its highest tide.

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Review

Completely immersive... A funny and fierce tale --Independent on Sunday

[Cheryl Strayed] is a compelling storyteller... In this hugely entertaining book she takes the redemptive nature of travel a theme as old as literature itself and makes it her own. --Observer

A traveller's tale about the challenges of modern America, the kindness of strangers and the resilience of the human spirit. Above all, a vigorous, colourful, heartening piece of writing. --The Times

A spectacular book... Both a literary and a human triumph. --New York Times

A deeply honest memoir about mother and daughter, solitude and courage, and regaining footing, one step at a time. --Vogue

Clear, honest, and quietly riveting. --Marie Claire

About the Author

Cheryl Strayed is the author of Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar and the novel Torch. Her stories and essays have appeared in numerous magazines and journals, including The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post Magazine, Vogue, The Rumpus, Self, The Missouri Review, The Sun, and The Best American Essays. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

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More About the Author

Cheryl Strayed is the author of the #1 New York Times-bestselling memoir WILD, the inspirational collection of advice essays TINY BEAUTIFUL THINGS: Advice on Love and Life from Someone Who's Been There, and the critically acclaimed novel TORCH. The movie adaptation of WILD is released by Fox Searchlight in January 2015. The film is directed by Jean-Marc Vallée and stars BAFTA-nominated Reese Witherspoon, with a screenplay by Nick Hornby. Cheryl's work has appeared in numerous magazines and journals, including The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post Magazine, Allure and The Rumpus. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband and their two children.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Divorcing the man she loved and who loved her 29 May 2015
Format:Paperback
The Castle of Comfort Book Club has twinned with an American club based in Florida. Twice a year, we will suggest books for the other group to read and review. Their first recommendation for us – was a memoir of a young lady walking the Pacific Crest Trail along part of the West Coast of America in order to reconnect with herself.
Cheryl was struggling with deep grief following the loss of her Mother and herself. After supporting her Mum through her final months she loses her grounding and focus. Divorcing the man she loved and who loved her, for a life of one night stands, alcohol and drugs. Cheryl`s early life invades her present with memories of an abusive father, a poor nomadic early life but a life that was rich in love from her Mother. A mother that taught her to love the wild, the country and nature.
The enduring love of her newly divorced husband encourages her to reflect on her lack of motivation and she impulsively makes a decision to walk eleven hundred miles of the West Coast of America –from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon and into Washington – and to do it alone, to walk away from a life “in ruins” to enter a life that was centred and grounded.
Our group (with the exception of one) loved it. The healing power of the land and nature was so beautifully described. The metaphors illustrated perfectly the journey she was taking – the backpack that was too heavy had to be relieved of items during her journey was a metaphor for the emotional burdens she was discarding. The pain of her feet (boots too small…walkers amongst us will empathise with the pain of blistered toes and heels and the undignified loss of toenails!!), the dehydration; hunger and exhaustion – to suffer physically is to heal emotionally and spiritually.
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106 of 115 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I could not put the book down 10 Mar. 2012
By Niki Collins-queen, Author TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
"Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail" is the amazingly honest, heart-felt memoir of Cheryl Strayed's 1,100-mile solo hike on the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State. It's also about her painful early life. Her abusive father left when she was six. Her mother died when she was twenty two. Her stepfather morphed from a person she considered her dad into a man she occasionally recognized. Her two siblings scattered in their grief as her marriage unraveled until she gave up and scattered as well.
With little experience as a long-distance hiker and the trail little more than an idea, "vague and outlandish and full of promise" she pieces back together a life that had come undone.
Her challenges included carrying a pack that weighed more than half her weight, blistered feet and loss of toenails, embarrassment about being broke, enduring extreme hunger, thirst, heat and cold and hiking on a narrow ridge in deep snow. ( She had to skip over four hundred miles as the trail was impassable because of the record snow.)
Cheryl laughed when her trail friends ("Three Young Bucks") named her "The Queen of the PCT" because people always wanted to give her things and did not do anything for them. She realized then, except for two creepy experiences, the world had opened their arms to her at every turn.
Sitting near the "Bridge of Gods" at the end of her hike she mused about all the trail had taught her and everything she couldn't yet know; that in four years she'd cross this bridge with another man and marry him and they would have a son and daughter.
Told with wit and wisdom Cheryl's book "Wild" is an unforgettable, inspiring story about her early life's challenges, her adventures and misadventures and the incredible beauty and spirit of the American West.
Her extraordinary story and writing is so poetic and vivid I laughed and cried and could not put the book down.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring journey of self-discovery 7 Jun. 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Not much actually happens in this book, but I couldn't put it down. Some of the descriptions ripped my heart out. Cheryl has been accused of self-indulgent prose, but she struck the perfect balance of literary and simplicity for me.
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48 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars sad, moving 15 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Next time Im forced to watch some jumped up so called celeb saying that theyve been on " A Journey " Im going to have to resist screaming and yelling... No You Havent !!! This book is one of the most moving, stunning tale of life and sadness that I have ever read. Its honest, brutal, sad , moving , uplifting. a bit saucy in places and just a dammed good read.

Cheryl decides after the death of her mother to do the PCT and takes it on as I think a way of making sense of the world around her. The death of her mother is covered in detail, the fact that although she and her sibblings got on with their step dad things soon started to fall apart after her mum died. The family were drifting away and there was nothing Cheryl could do to stop it . I was shocked how they dealt with Lady her mothers beloved horse.. That stayed with me for a while .

I didnt realise when you did these walks that you can send parcels on ahead with things you will need or as a back up . Cheryl was depending on these to see her through, Sometimes they had arrived and sometimes not but as things were bad enough with painful feet, aching muscles and no spare clothes having to worry about money just added to the mix. Many a time she was down to her last few cents and it was with the kindness of strangers that she survived . The graphic details of her of her toe nails turning black and falling off was gruesome, she actually pulled a couple off herself, Yuck ! The utter dispair as when she sits down to rest and takes her boots off one of them tumbles over the rocks far below. I would have sobbed, what did Cheryl do ? She threw the other down after it , as one boot was no use at all !

The characters she met on the trail, some of whom over took her on the trial, many helped her felt like old friends in the end . I was overwhelmed when I finished this book . Im so glad I read it .
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic book, highly recommend
I LOVED this book! I saw the film on a plane and didn't think I was going to like it that much, but I loved it and thought about it a lot afterwards. Read more
Published 1 hour ago by Katharine Sutton
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book.
Really enjoyed this book. Got into it really quickly and loved reading it. If you have seen the film the book is just so much better.
Published 4 hours ago by Julie P. Sims
5.0 out of 5 stars Impressive!
I enjoyed this book more than I anticipated I would. My nephew hiked the entire 2,650 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail so I was ready to not be impressed with Ms. Read more
Published 20 hours ago by VJF
4.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed the determination and honesty in this book
I enjoyed the determination and honesty in this book. The big outdoors is a great place to find perspective. Thank you!
Published 1 day ago by spadegirl
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A well written account of both an inner struggle and the almost overwhelming demands of an epic journey.
Published 2 days ago by H W
2.0 out of 5 stars Thanks but, No Thanks!
This time wish I'd watched the film and just not bothered with the book.

" Hey I'm having a crisis mixed with a tantrum, I'm gonna unexpectedly use foul language in... Read more
Published 2 days ago by Miss A.E.Russell
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Loved this book.
Published 3 days ago by Lesley Wright
5.0 out of 5 stars A Glorious Book
It only took me to get through the first page to know that I was going to love this book. Cheryl’s writing style is exquisite and her character even more so. Read more
Published 4 days ago by FunkyDunky
4.0 out of 5 stars Wild
This book was bought for my partners daughter. She enjoyed it.
Published 4 days ago by Barbara Joan
4.0 out of 5 stars This was a great read, it felt like you were on the ...
This was a great read, it felt like you were on the trail with Cheryl! Unfortunately I watched the movie shortly after I read the book and was highly disappointed since they left... Read more
Published 6 days ago by Shanna Swan
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