Into the Wild

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Discipline:
Language Arts
Subject:
Book Reports

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Into the Wild

Into the Wild is a true story about Chris McCandless, a twenty four year old Emory graduate who grew up in the wealthy suburbs of Virginia. He was very intelligent, passionate, and a great athlete. After he graduated, he abandoned his family and friends, donated his $25,000 savings to charity, and set out into the wildness without telling anyone where he was going. By his senior year at Emory, he had almost completely isolated himself from all his family and friends. His family thought he was going to go to law school, but instead he donates all his money to charity and goes off the grid. He changes his name and never contacts anyone again. After he left Atlanta, his car gets caught in a flash flood and destroys the engine. For two years, he hitchhiked around the Northwest, not living anywhere for long. He lived on the streets with barely anything in his pockets. McCandless settles on a plan to go to Alaska and truly live in the wilderness, completely alone, and with very few supplies, to see if he can do it, to push himself to the very extremes. He spends a few months preparing, learning all he can about hunting, edible plants, etc, and then he leaves South Dakota, where he’d been working, and hitchhikes to Fairbanks. Those whom he tells about the plan all warn him that he needs to be better prepared, or should wait until later in the spring, but he is adamant and stubborn.On his journey, he met new people and learned all he could about hunting, edible plants, etc, and eventually makes it to Alaska near Mt. McKinley. Upon spending sixteen weeks in the isolation of the wilderness, he dies from starvation after eating poisonous moldy seeds.

Book Plot

Christopher McCandless a young man who believes that life is best lived alone, in nature. He spends two years testing his theory throughout the western United States before entering the wilds of Alaska unprepared and starving to death. Calls himself "Alexander Supertramp"

Main Characters

About the Author

Jon Krakauer is an American writer and mountaineer. He writes a lot about being outdoors and the wilderness. His bestsellers are Into the Wild, Into Thin Air, Under the Banner of Heaven, and Where Men Win Glory: The Odessy of Pat Tillman. He was part of an expedition to climb Mount Everest in 1996. It became known as the 1996 Mount Everest disaster, one of the deadliest disasters in the history of climbing Everest.

Book Report

Into the Wild

Jon Krakauer

Book Cover

Themes

Materialism: Alex consistently rejects the suburban upper middle class lifestyle that he was raised in. He escapes this by running away from reality. He donates all of his savings to charity, abandons his car in the desert, and burns his paper money.Survival in the wilderness: Throughout the book, Alex struggles to survive off the grid. One of Alex’s favorite authors was Jack London. London’s book “To Build a Fire” foreshadows Alex’s fate. The book is about a man’s inability to survive in the wilderness and ultimately dies by freezing to death in the woods.Young manhood: His young spirit, arrogance, and idealism kills him. It’s unlikely that anyone experiencing adulthood would do the same thing Alex did.

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