A number of years ago I watched a fantastic film called Into the Wild. There was something about it, maybe the wanderlust of the main character, the expansive Alaskan wilderness, or the excellent cinematography, whatever it was, it was a great movie. Fast forward to recent times when I came across the book that the movie was based on, and my discovery that it was written by the same author (Jon Krakauer) who wrote two other books that I loved (Under the Banner of Heaven and Where Men Win Glory) I grabbed it and dove right in.
Just like the other books by Krakauer, Into the Wild is heavily researched, but written in such a way that everything flows smoothly and is easy to follow. There is a little bit of travelling back and forth in time, and the only time things got off track was when Krakauer detailed the exploits of other people who took a similar course to Chris McCandless.
So what was the course of McCandless? He was a college graduate who one day just decided to drop everything and start traveling around America. Krakauer tracks him on his path by way of interviews with those that gave him a ride, a job, or accommodation. It’s fascinating to hear what the various people thought of him, and this, tied in with the detailed notes and diaries that McCandless left behind adds layer upon layer of things to enjoy.
Into the Wild is an interesting and thought provoking read.