Summer Reading Program
Cheryl eased herself down onto the mountain trail, surveyed the stunning view, and slowly pulled her hiking boots from her tortured feet, setting them beside her. As she rested in the sun’s warmth, her backpack, a physical burden she’d affectionately named “Monster,” toppled onto her boots, sending one boot sailing off the cliff into the treetops far below. Cheryl looked at her one remaining boot, her lifeline to the world . . . and hurled it out into the air.
Cheryl Strayed’s journey began long before she took her first step on the 2,663-mile Pacific Crest Trail in the summer of 1995, when she was twenty-six years old. After losing her mother to cancer, Strayed had lost herself. To find herself again, Strayed performed the simple act of placing one boot in front of the other, and she invites the reader to hike alongside her as she goes beyond all physical and emotional boundaries in her memoir Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail. Both heartbreaking and triumphant, Wild is a story about finding yourself, even in the most unlikely of places.
This year, Jacksonville State University is pleased to announce Wild by Cheryl Strayed, a New York Times bestseller and critical success, as the 2015 Summer Reading Program book.
Students will study and discuss the Summer Reading Program book in English Composition and First-Year Student Experience courses. The book will also serve as the catalyst for discussion in Freshman Forum and the C.O.C.K.Y. Experience through University Housing and Residence Life. The goals of Jacksonville State University’s Summer Reading Program are to unite the freshman class and to promote thought and action on a variety of relevant issues by reading a common text prior to beginning the first semester of college.
In accord with this year’s selection, students will also enjoy a wide variety of events, including speakers, presentations, and service projects.