Into the Wild

Into the WildOne of the auditors at work who often inhabits the cube next to me recommended a book he had been reading, “Into the Wild” by John Krakaurer. I picked it up while on lunch and read it over the next two days. It’s the tragic tale of 24 year old Chris McCandless, aka Alexander Supertramp, an intelligent and educated young man with existential angst and wanderlust, who lived off the land of rural Alaska for one summer before succumbing to starvation and injury from mysterious causes and dying alone inside an abandoned school bus where he had been camped. You know going into the book that he dies. The book is really about trying to unravel his motivations and reasons for living such a perilous life on the fringe. Why did he feel so uncomfortable in his world and with himself? Why did he feel so strongly about proving himself against nature and reality? What experience did he hope to achieve?

It’s also about growing up and searching for meaning, the relationships between fathers and sons, the individual and society, the siren song of idealism against the inhumanity of reality. It’s about life and ultimately failure.

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