Into the Wild Study Guide

Into the Wild

Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer

Into the Wild is a non-fictional account of the wilderness survival and eventual death of Christopher McCandless, a teenager who left home to experience nature's grandeur. The survival of McCandless's journals and the accounts of those he met with on his travels paint a vivid picture of a determined young man wrestling with personal demons through travel. McCandless dies alone in the Alaskan wilderness at the conclusion of the novel.

In this chapter, the author visits Carine McCandless in Virginia Beach and she shows him pictures of Chris at both seven and seventeen and describes how much she loved her dog, Buck. Carine had the same high level of intellectual thought as her brother and is highly opinionated but describes how she made peace with their parents. She now works with her husband Sam on their auto repair business, working almost constantly, finding irony in how much she disliked her parents for doing the same thing.

Carine describes how she cries every day over Chris’s death and how he grief persists. It has been ten months since she learned from her husband of Chris’s death, making her hysterical. When she finally calmed, she and her husband drove four hours to her parents’ home, and then flew to Fairbanks the next day to retrieve Chris’s body. She describes how Chris’s cause of death affected their diets, since he starved to death. She describes the extremities of her family’s grief, even nearly a year later.

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