Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Cheryl Strayed's Wild. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
Wild: Plot Summary
Wild: Detailed Summary & Analysis
Wild: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Cheryl Strayed
Historical Context of Wild
Other Books Related to Wild
- Full Title: Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail
- When Written: 2000s
- Where Written: Portland, Oregon
- When Published: 2012
- Literary Period: Contemporary
- Genre: Memoir, inspiration
- Setting: The Pacific Crest Trail, a hiking route that stretches from the Mojave Desert all the way up to Canada. Cheryl’s journey takes her from Mojave, California to Cascade Locks, Oregon.
- Climax: After having sex on the beach with a man named Jonathan, Cheryl begins to realize that perhaps she is already redeemed—or never needed to be redeemed in the first place—for all the mistakes she’s made in her life.
- Point of View: First person
Extra Credit for Wild
“My Wild Story”. As a result of Wild’s profound, widespread success as both a memoir and a movie, the Pacific Crest Trail Association’s website now even has a section called “WILD,” complete with a video message from Cheryl Strayed herself and guides to replicating Cheryl’s exact hikes. Hikers can share their own “Wild” stories, adding text and images to a database full of stories of people who took to the trail after being inspired by Cheryl’s own journey.
Reese’s Pieces. Reese Witherspoon is the star of Wild (2014), a film based on Cheryl Strayed’s memoir. Witherspoon, however, also served as a producer on the film. After reading Strayed’s book in less than a day shortly after its release, Witherspoon called the writer out of the blue to immediately discuss bringing it to the big screen. Witherspoon has credited the film as being the hardest thing she’s ever done, and has expressed her gratitude to the role for forcing Hollywood to accept a woman over thirty in an unglamorous but important role.