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Into the Wild

By Jon Krakauer

On the face of it, this is an account of what happened to Chris McCandless, a 20-something who made his way to the Alaskan wilderness. Krakauer admits he is also exploring something inside himself through the story of this young man's life. He's trying to figure out what makes certain people go to a place where there isn't any protection. What's so beautiful is the last anecdote: The parents travel to the spot where their son died, and it gives them peace. The mother leaves a box of food, with a note: "Call your parents." This isn't a book about someone looking to die; it's about someone who wanted to live and had to test himself. I think everybody has some of that inside of them.

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