Author: Cheryl Strayed
Quote: “What if I forgave myself even though I’d done something I shouldn’t have?”
Setting: America, Present
Premise: Cheryl Strayed had hit rock bottom, and then had managed to find a crevice in that rocky bed to sink herself even further into the despair of grief and regret. With nowhere to go and no one to help she made the single most impulsive decision of her life – she would hike more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail. Alone.
From the premise alone I could tell this would be a powerful book. Cheryl had done something that most people would deem preposterous in this soul searching journey, and then she’d written about it. Nothing is left uncovered in this account, the things she’s proud of, and more importantly, the things that she desperately regretted. Life is life and this book contrasts the ugly with the beauty in a way that is mindblowing.
This book is written from Cheryl’s own account, a mix of her adventures on the trail and the deep sorrows of her past contrasting nicely as step by step she overcomes the challenges and lets herself be forgiven. The entire story arch is her tracking her progress along the trail and through the mental minefield, she has to survive which is what makes this such an addictive page-turner of a read.
The theme of the book is quite clearly self-forgiveness and finding hope once more. Every turn and decision she makes in the book is about survival and keeping ongoing, it’s about finding herself amongst the pain of her life and accepting herself for who she is. The trail is a physical symbol of her journey, but it’s the mental path that she has to take which is the hardest.
I found this book at the point the film came out. The whole premise of the story, and the idea of taking on a challenging adventure, had me so gripped that I just had to hunt down the book before watching the movie. Despite the darkness in Cheryl’s story, hope shines through on every page, leaving me inspired and motivated on my far less dramatic path in life. This book was a breath of fresh air and a motivational boost when I needed it most, I hope you find it motivational too! Happy Book Hunting!
You’ve heard enough about how much I like this book, but is this book you’re hunting for?
- Do you enjoy real life stories of challeneg and triumph?
- Are you in the mood for a motivational boost?
- Do you want a read filled with hope and feel good vibes for the world we live in?
If you answered yes, yES, YES! Then this might well be your next favourite read!