Sunday, August 16, 2015

read | A Walk in the Woods

A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson recently re-entered my awareness when I saw the movie trailer this summer. I’d been meaning to read some of his work for a while, and this seemed like the perfect time to start. I’d also just watched the movie Wild, which piqued my interest in the world of hiking. This book tells of Bryson’s attempt to hike the Appalachian Trail. The book breaks up stories of hiking (and hikers) with information about the science and history of the trail. While this is certainly relevant, due to the book’s length of 274 pages I feel like these passages are included to fill out the page count. Fortunately, these sections usually wrapped up as I was preparing to skim. Another drawback to these digressions is that you don’t feel fully immersed in the trail for any duration that would emphasize just how long the trail really is. The hikers walk for miles and miles and miles, but when you leave the story every thirty pages or so, it throws you out.

The edition I read has a movie tie-in cover that isn’t the most offensive I’ve seen. It’s not embarrassingly prominent glamour shots where the faces have been airbrushed to anonymity. The people on the cover do kind of ruin it. Cover them up with a Post-It or something and you’re left with a suitably majestic view of the Appalachian Trail, though I suppose this doesn’t do much to promote the film.

When A Walk in the Woods is actually about the walk in the woods, I didn’t want to put it down. There are some slow bits that break it up, but overall I found this book a highly enjoyable account of a world most people never enter.

3.5 stars out of 5
I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

No comments:

Post a Comment