My first non-romance review of the year, and it’s a book I have not been able to view positively. I often avoid bestsellers like the plague until I have a friend who’s book opinions I trust tell me to try it (like Station Eleven, I’m listening to it now, it’s a-mah-zing!). So why did I read Wild? Well, I moved ~6 months ago to this charming area almost three thousand miles from all my friends, but thankfully near my sister. And therefore I work (too much) and hang out with her. Mr. Beth Ellen is currently finishing up a fancy shmancy degree elsewhere, so I’m a little short on friends. I scour the meet ups for book clubs that are convenient (we don’t have the best traffic situations here). So a book club just started, and this was their first selection. I decided to give them the benefit of the doubt and read it. I was wrong.
Wild by Cheryl Strayed, which has been reviewed many times on the CBR over the years, is the story of a 26 year old woman who after her mothers death and some wild living decides to hike a large section of the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave to the Oregon Washington border. And here I’ll say that I listened to it on audiobook, as I didn’t feel like reading it, and I can listen while I do things at work. The narrator was okay, I’ve listened to her before, but she’s definitely not my favorite so that may have effected my view.
I don’t hate it? I think that’s my review. The hiking part was interesting, and the people she met also hiking had interesting stories that I enjoyed hearing, but I had trouble connected with her. I have not lost my mother (who better still be around thirty years from now as she is the best), but I do have a lot of experience with grief. My best friend died when I was 18 (he was 19). It was an accident, and really, by the time I was 25 ten friends around my age had passed away. Grief. I got it down. And I was okay with her intense grief. Everyone handles it differently. What I couldn’t understand, was even still with this writing many years later, her complete anger at her family for not handling it like her. The thing you learn watching younger people die, is that everyone handles it differently, but you must apply no judgement. I had a lot of trouble connecting with her because of her anger still towards her family. Also the story of putting down the family horse, I had to skip over it for they were all idiots. I grew up in the country, they deserved the horrific scene they got for not handling it correctly.
So overall, my review is, I don’t hate it. But I mostly dislike it. Back to reading romances!