The key missing piece of Jon Krakauer's multi million, multi territory bestseller and widely acclaimed Sean Penn film Into the Wild is finally revealed. Carine McCandless, beloved and trusted sister of Chris, who has wrestled for more than 20 years with her internationally known brother's journey to self-discovery and quest for authenticity tells her own story, thereby filling in all the questions left for readers, listeners, and viewers. The story of Chris McCandless, who gave away his savings, hitchhiked to Alaska, walked into the wilderness alone, and starved to death in 1992, fascinated not just New York Times bestselling author Jon Krakauer, but also the rest of the nation. Krakauer's book and a Sean Penn film skyrocketed Chris McCandless to fame, but the real story of his life and his journey has not yet been told-until now. Carine McCandless, Chris's sister, featured in both the book and film, was the person with whom he had the closest bond, and who witnessed firsthand the highly dysfunctional and violent family dynamic that set the stage for Chris's willingness to embrace the harsh wilderness of Alaska, his intense longing to look squarely at the nature of life, and at the complex and highly charged relationship he had with his father. Growing up in the same troubled and volatile household that sent Chris on his fatal journey into the wild, Carine finally reveals the broader and deeper reality about life in the McCandless family. Never before having shared this story, Carine has spent more than 20 years seeking the same understanding, reconciliation, and absolution she believes Chris finally found in an abandoned school bus in Alaska. Chris McCandless had a fascinating story-one that captivated the nation. But Carine McCandless, too, has her own fascinating story. For decades, Carine and Chris's parents, a successful aerospace engineer and his beautiful wife, raised their children in the tony suburbs of Northern Virginia. But behind closed doors, her father beat and choked her mother. He whipped Carine and Chris with his belt. He cursed them, belittled their accomplishments, and told them they were nothing without him. Carine and Chris hid under the stairs, hoping to avoid his wrath. They were teenagers before they learned they were conceived while their father was still married and having babies with his first wife, who finally summoned the courage to leave him after he broke her back in a fight. Chris was Carine's best friend. In the 20-plus years since the tragedy, she has searched for some kind of redemption. But in this touching and deeply personal memoir, she reveals how she has learned that real redemption can only come from speaking the truth. Finally, she has found the truth not just in her brother's story, but also her own. Carine McCandless says, "In The Wild Truth I share the real story of my family. More than just the truth behind the McCandless legend, it is the story of a quiet wilderness-of a dysfunctional family, decades of abuse, and how eight siblings came together to break the cycle for their own children. In the decades since Chris's death, my half-siblings and I have come together to find our own truth and build our own beauty in his absence. In each other, we've found absolution, as I believe Chris found absolution in the wild before he died."
- Publication Date:
- 03 / 11 / 2014