If you've ever felt frustrated with modern life, if you've longed, in some strange primal way, to reconnect with nature in its cruelest and deadliest incarnation, then Guy Grieve's Call of the American Wild will resonate and fascinate.
Performed with aplomb by actor Steve West, whose frank and almost conversational style suits this intimate work well, Call of the American Wild tells the story of Guy Grieve's one year retreat into the Alaskan wilderness, where he builds a cabin, learns to live off the land, and contemplates questions of self-reliance, humility, family, and modernity. This audiobook contains a wonderful mix of practical information and existential consideration, perfect for adventure seekers and memoir addicts alike.
A man, an axe, and a dog named Fuzzy.... Let the adventure begin!
Trapped in a job he hated and up to his neck in debt, Guy Grieve’s life was going nowhere. But with a stroke of luck, his dream of escaping it all to live in remote Alaska suddenly came true. Miles from the nearest human being and armed with only the most basic equipment, Guy built a log cabin from scratch and began carving a life for himself through fishing, hunting, and diligently avoiding bears.
Packed with adventure, humor, and insight, this is the gripping story of an ordinary man learning the ways of the wild.
©2012 Guy Grieve (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
My favorite genres are absurdist humor, Sci-fi & modern fantasy, but, as you can see, I'll read just about anything. Don't mind the typos.
I was excited to listen to this book but the problems started almost immediately. I was born and raised in Alaska and when Grieve writes that he had to get back to camp by early evening because he didn't want to be caught out in the dark I started to realize things were fishy. In late spring, when he claims to be here, the sun doesn't set until almost midnight and doesn't set at all for a few months the farther north you go. He's vague on a lot of facts in this book, facts that could be verified. It feels like he's glossing over details. I'm not saying the story isn't true. I'm saying I have A LOT of doubts about its authenticity. I'd skip this one.
Exactly the kind of story I was hoping for - man against nature in the positive meaning of the phrase. Interesting, captivating, well read. It didn't leave me breathless, or changed my life, but I have really enjoyed listening to it.
Yes! Tickles the yearning in many of us for pursuing the impossible or impractical. Smacks of the Jack London chronicles, albeit a bit tamer.
Loved the risk taken by a humble, inexperienced man. We should all be so bold...
Great inflections and characterizations.
Relationship with the dogs and gaining respect of locals.
This is one of the best action books that I've listened to. My preference is usually travel and this one fits the adventure/travel/suspense category.
The most memorable moment was when I finished reading the book!
I never wanted to stop listening to the story
The author and main character is Scottish. Steve West's accent is British.
This may have already been addressed by other reviewers, but a reviewer said she doubted the authenticity of this story because the author didn't mention that the part of Alaska he was in has 24 hour daylight during the late spring. The author began his adventure on the ground in Alaska in mid-August, not late spring. The time of year is mentioned because the people helping him said he would have 2 months at the most to do all the prep work AND get the cabin built before real winter set in. I will not go into detail about why I hate this story other than that the author was wholly unprepared and relied way too much on others to see him through. And he mistreated a dog and at one point left the dog vulnerable to wolves and bears. Need I say more? Also, the narrator's accent is British, not Scottish. The author is from Scotland. A far superior listen is "One Man's Wilderness" about Richard Proenneke. That book I could listen to over and over and over.
I was skeptical at first, because I want to be taken away by this kind of book. Boy, did it deliver. The book was well written and very well read. I would recommend this book to anyone wanting to learn a thing or two about surviving in the Alaskan bush or just wanting to escape the daily grind of the concrete jungle. Two thumbs up.
If I was on a long car trip and didn't have any unread books on my phone I would listen to it again because it was a good story and I'd like to pay closer attention to the logistics now that I know what to focus on, just to get a deeper understanding.
AMAZING job of creating different characters.
First, the guy (literally, GUY) is Scottish, so that's why the jarring accent. I took me a little while to catch on so at first I was annoyed with the absurdly out-of-place accent. But then it made sense.
I, too, am floundering in a corporate "cube farm" and long to make a go of it in Alaska, so I understand his motives. However, I agree with other reviewers who had a hard time with him leaving his wife and little kids to go on what could have easily been a deadly adventure. As a dad, I don't have the right intentionally put myself in such harm's way for no really good reason, and I felt the same about him.
But that aside, the story was great and he did a wonderful job of describing how he muddled through as an ill-equipped stranger in a strange land.
Yes, I'm glad I read it and I would recommend it.
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