Into the Wild (Paperback)
Adventure and the appeal of the wilderness are what draw Chris McCandless into the Alaskan wild. This book explores his journey, the motivation behind his decision to go into the wild, and how his life ended as a result of being in the wild. I kept rereading this book all throughout high school because, in a way, I admired McCandless for leaving his reality and adventuring out into the world to be free. Still one of my favorite books today, I recommend it to people who are looking for a bit of adventure, and because the book evokes so many thoughts and ranging emotions.— From Into the Wild, by Jon Krakauer
A tale of a young man entranced by figures of transcendentalism who embarks on a lonesome, nomadic adventure and ends up dead in the Alaskan Bush. Fueled by romanticized goals of unity with nature and scorn for the material world, Chris McCandless reminds us of a primal desire hidden deep within ourselves. Jon Krakauer's narration completes the piece, chalk full of thorough research and insightful analysis. A nonfiction masterpiece!— From Into the Wild By Jon Krakauer
"Terrifying ... Eloquent ... A heart-rending drama of human yearning." —New York Times
In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter. How Christopher Johnson McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild.
Immediately after graduating from college in 1991, McCandless had roamed through the West and Southwest on a vision quest like those made by his heroes Jack London and John Muir. In the Mojave Desert he abandoned his car, stripped it of its license plates, and burned all of his cash. He would give himself a new name, Alexander Supertramp, and, unencumbered by money and belongings, he would be free to wallow in the raw, unfiltered experiences that nature presented. Craving a blank spot on the map, McCandless simply threw the maps away. Leaving behind his desperate parents and sister, he vanished into the wild.
Jon Krakauer constructs a clarifying prism through which he reassembles the disquieting facts of McCandless's short life. Admitting an interest that borders on obsession, he searches for the clues to the drives and desires that propelled McCandless.
When McCandless's innocent mistakes turn out to be irreversible and fatal, he becomes the stuff of tabloid headlines and is dismissed for his naiveté, pretensions, and hubris. He is said to have had a death wish but wanting to die is a very different thing from being compelled to look over the edge. Krakauer brings McCandless's uncompromising pilgrimage out of the shadows, and the peril, adversity, and renunciation sought by this enigmatic young man are illuminated with a rare understanding—and not an ounce of sentimentality. Mesmerizing, heartbreaking, Into the Wild is a tour de force. The power and luminosity of Jon Krakauer's stoytelling blaze through every page.
"Compelling and tragic ... Hard to put down."
—San Francisco Chronicle
"Engrossing ... with a telling eye for detail, Krakauer has captured the sad saga of a stubborn, idealistic young man."
—Los Angeles Times Book Review
"It may be nonfiction, but Into the Wild is a mystery of the highest order."