Monday, June 23, 2008

Readers' Picks--What Library Staff are Reading--Part V

Dwight Hunter recommends a book whose author he describes as an "amazing storyteller who weaves a poetic writing structure" into his story.

Dwight says, "I'm reading Jon Krakauer's Into the Wild, and what a book! No wonder it was made into a movie starring Emile Hirsch, Hal Holbrook, William Hurt and others. The book chronicles the choices made by Chris McCandless--a young man who grew up within a modestly wealthy home, but garnered an extreme moral judgement complex that led him to voluntarily live in poverty in his attempt to be free of daily demands. McCandless encounters the working poor/drifting subculture in America in his short journey before his lonely death at a very young age.

While the book chronicles McCandless' life and his choices, it also by the very nature of telling McCandless's story tells the story of those who by no choice of their own drift aimlessly or work in poverty in America. And Krakauer wrote the details so well, there was only one small part of the book that did not flow smoothly like a meandering creek. That's a well written book.

Krakauer asks an important question: What happens to the idealism of some college students once they graduate? Many take the path of Chris McCandless' friends and family who still admire the idealistic thoughts but go on to have a family and a life of making money. Chris McCandless chose to give away his trust fund to charity, burn the money he had in his wallet, and become a celibate drifter. He wanted the freedom that he believed his idealism and moral compass could give him.

This book should challenge each of us to think about the choices we make everyday."

Image credit to AddALL Book Search.

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