Read: February 2016
This book has been in my list of ‘Books to read before I watch the film’ for sometime, so long that I’ve since found that the film has since disappeared from Netflix, so its the films turn to sit on a long list of things to get to.
Spolier free summary, this is a biographical novel following Cheryl’s 3 month journey along the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) in America. She’s not a professional hiker and despite a hefty amount of theoretical research starts the hike with limited knowledge or what awaits her. In terms of plot it quite difficult to spoil, she walks; she walks a very long way; obviously it wouldn’t be a novel without there being a bit more to it than that but this is as much about Cheryl’s mental journey as it is her physical one.
Cheryl decides to take on the hike following the death of mother and breakdown of her marriage, events which leave her feeling lost and empty. The aim of the solo hike is a journey of rediscovering what she wants to do with her life. Along the way Cheryl meets several other hikers all of which have a varying degree of impact on her and her journey.
A few times I forgot that this was biographical novel, I also forgot how young the main character is, at 26 Cheryl is only 2 years older than me during the book. Obviously I’ve not been through the trauma that drove her to take on the PCT but I still struggle to identify with being an adult sometimes let alone one capable of achieving something like that on their own.
It took me a couple of weeks to read this, going through a house/job move was probably not the best time to pick up a ‘discovering your way in life’ book but I enjoyed this nonetheless. I gave this 4/5 starts on goodreads, it left me wanting to hear so much more about Cheryl’s life after the PCT.