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Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer

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The novel “Into the Wild” by Jon Krakauer goes into great detail to describe the main character, Chris McCandless, who died traveling alone into the Alaskan wilderness. McCandless, whom in the novel renamed himself Alex, left his home and family to travel to Alaska in 1992. In Alaska McCandless planned to live an isolated life in the desolate wilderness, but unfortunately he did not survive. This non-fiction novel portrays his life leading up to his departure and it captures the true essence of what it means to be “in the wild”.

The author wrote this story in response to a magazine company, and eventually published it into a book. He used many styles and techniques to describe the life and death of McCandless. The mood throughout the novel constantly varies with the excitement of McCandless’s adventures and the emotions caused by his disappearance. Krakauer’s ability to engage multiple senses of a reader truly makes his novel special.

The novel is organized in an unusual manner that can make it seem unclear to the reader. Krakauer does not introduce the work as a whole, yet he pieces together the story through different chapters. McCandless’s journey is described out of chronological order, requiring the audience to pay careful attention in order to understand the events that unfold.

The makeup of the novel consisted of pieces from McCandless’s diary and letters to friends, but they did not make up the entirety of the story. McCandless pieced together evidence of the fatal adventures of McCandless and included his own personal interpretation of what occurred, causing uncertainty about the accuracy of this non-fictional literature. In the author’s note he said, “But let the reader be warned: I interrupt McCandless's story w...

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...ider audience to read the novel and understand the themes it conveys.

The pieces of the book come together in the end, where a helicopter leaves the bus in which McCandless died. Krakauer included specific enough details to understand the entire story. He provided an emotional ending that leaves the reader with many thoughts.

The most important part in writing a novel is to enable the audience to understand what is being communicated. Krakauer did so by clearly communicating his message to his audience. He wanted to share the story of McCandless, a young man who dreamt of conquering the wilderness alone. This conquest ultimately ended in failure and cast a feeling of sorrow upon his family and friends. With the exception of a slight difficulty to understand the story during certain chapters, Krakauer’s novel was full of thrill of emotion and life-lessons.
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