“Into the Wild, a nonfiction book by journalist Jon Krakauer, is the true story of Chris McCandless, an angsty teenager sick of his privileged life. He essentially leaves everything that he has and tries to live off the land, which works for a time. He periodically lives off the land and rice, and then goes back to society for a few months, and then lives off the land. He meets many people who become very fond of him, but he never really connects too deeply with any of them because he is focused on his main goal-- to go to the heart of Alaska and live off the land. He is unprepared and ill-fitted to live off the land, so he dies when winter comes along. His family and friends are devastated.
Throughout the book my emotions towards of McCandless changed. It seemed from chapter to chapter, the author was taking the reader from different perspectives and people who knew McCandless, so at the end of each, you can’t help but feel differently about him. In the beginning, he is reckless and idealistic. After a few chapters when you’re introduced to the people that he became acquainted with, you find yourself feeling angry at him because he should know how thoughtless he is being. Then, as the author takes you deeper into his story and motives, it becomes clear that his life wasn’t perfect, and that there might have been some tension between him and his dad, so by the end of that portion, you find yourself feeling sympathetic. Krakauer stresses the fact that his story is not unique; there are many careless young men who immaturely think they can handle the wild. However, I did like McCandless’ search for deeper meaning and simplicity. That search is common to all people. I think at one point or another, everyone craves simplicity and deeper meaning. They are not always connected, but to McCandless they were. Into the Wild was a powerful commentary on need for more simplicity, and essentially a return to the things that matter most. ”