Cheryl Strayed is the author of the critically-acclaimed novel
"Torch," which was a finalist for the Great Lakes Book Award and
was selected by "The Oregonian "as one of the top ten books of 2006
by Pacific Northwest authors; a memoir, "Wild"; and "Tiny Beautiful
Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar." Her stories and
essays have appeared in numerous magazines and journals, including
"The New York Times Magazine," "The""Washington Post Magazine," "
Vogue," "The Rumpus," "Self," "The Missouri Review," and "The Sun."
Her essays have been included in the Pushcart Prize anthology and
twice in "The Best American Essays." She lives in Portland,
"A rich, riveting true story . . . During her grueling three-month
journey, Strayed circled around black bears and rattlesnakes,
fought extreme dehydration by drinking oily gray pond water, and
hiked in boots made entirely of duct tape. Reading her
matter-of-fact take on love and grief and the soul-saving quality
of a Snapple lemonade, you can understand why Strayed has earned a
cult following as the author of Dear Sugar, a popular advice column
on therumpus.net. . . . With its vivid descriptions of beautiful
but unforgiving terrain, "Wild" is a cinematic story, but Strayed's
book isn't really about big, cathartic moments. The author never
'finds herself' or gets healed. When she reaches the trail's end,
she buys a cheap ice cream cone and continues down the road. . . .
It's hard to imagine anything more important than taking one step
at a time. That's endurance, and that's what Strayed understands,
almost 20 years later. As she writes, 'There was only one [option],
I knew. To keep walking.' Our verdict: A." --Melissa Maerz,
"Strayed's journey was as transcendent as it was turbulent. She faced down hunger, thirst, injury, fatigue, boredom, loss, bad weather, and wild animals. Yet she also reached new levels of joy, accomplishment, courage, peace, and found extraordinary companionship." --Marjorie Kehe, "Christian Science Monitor"
"It's not very manly, the topic of weeping while reading. Yet for a book critic tears are an occupational hazard. Luckily, perhaps, books don't make me cry very often. Turning pages, I'm practically Steve McQueen. Strayed's memoir, "Wild," however, pretty much obliterated me. I was reduced, during her book's final third, to puddle-eyed cretinism. I like to read in coffee shops, and I began to receive concerned glances from matronly women, the kind of looks that said, 'Oh, honey.' To mention all this does Strayed a bit of a disservice, because there's nothing cloying about "Wild." It's uplifting, but no
"Spectacular. . . . A literary and human triumph." --"The New
York Times Book Review"
"Strayed's language is so vivid, sharp and compelling that you feel the heat of the desert, the frigid ice of the High Sierra, and the breathtaking power of one remarkable woman finding her way--and herself--one brave step at a time." --"People" (4 stars)
"Cinematic. . . . A rich, riveting story. . . . Our verdict: A." --Entertainment Weekly
"Pretty much obliterated me. I was reduced, during the book's final third, to puddle-eyed cretinism. . . . As loose and sexy and dark as an early Lucinda Williams song. It's got a punk spirit and makes an earthy and American sound. . . . The cumulative welling up I experienced during "Wild" was partly a response to that too infrequent sight: that of a writer finding her voice, and sustaining it, right in front of your eyes." --Dwight Garner, "The New York Times"
"Brave seems like the right word to sum up this woman and her book. . . . Strayed's journey is exceptional." --"San Francisco Chronicle
"One of the best books I've read in the last five or ten years. . . . "Wild "is angry, brave, sad, self-knowing, redemptive, raw, compelling, and brilliantly written, and I think it's destined to be loved by a lot of people, men and women, for a very long time." --Nick Hornby
"Devastating and glorious. . . . By laying bare a great unspoken truth of adulthood--that many things in life don't turn out the way you want them to, and that you can and must live through them anyway--"Wild" feels real in many ways that many books about 'finding oneself' . . . do not." --"Slate
"Incisive and telling. . . . [Strayed] has the ineffable gift every writer longs for of saying exactly what she means in lines that are both succinct and poetic. . . . an inborn talent for articulating angst and the gratefulness that comes when we overcome it." --"The Washington Post
"Vivid, touching and ultimately inspiring acc