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Publisher's Summary

After Paul Stutzman lost his wife to breast cancer, he sensed a tug on his heart - the call to a challenge, the call to pursue a dream. With a mixture of dread and determination, Paul left his job, traveled to Georgia, and took his first steps on the Appalachian Trail. What he learned during the next four and a half months changed his life and can change yours as well.

In Hiking Through, you'll join Paul on his remarkable 2,176-mile trip through 14 states in search of peace and a renewed sense of purpose. Along the way, you'll meet fascinating and funny people, experience trail magic, and discover that every choice we make on the path has consequences for the journey. More than that, you'll come away with a new understanding of God's grace and guidance, even in the smallest things.

©2012 Paul Stutzman (P)2015 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Appalachian Trail enthusiasts, hikers, and dreamers will find this story a compelling account of the physicality of coming to terms with life and its sadnesses." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Interesting

Pretty interesting read. I wasn't expecting for it to get extremely religious during most of the book, to the point of having to take a break from listening to it because the author was preaching to the reader. But if hiking and religion is your thing then this is a definite read! But if hiking only is, take it in small sections and it's worth listening to!

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

More religious than spiritual.

Some interesting details about the APT but not very technical. The author slowly adds more and more reference to Christianity until the hike is in the background.

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Solid on two different levels

What was one of the most memorable moments of Hiking Through?

He has several revelations or epiphanies on the trail, or I had several revelations or epiphanies while reading about his experience on the trail, or both.

Have you listened to any of Mike Chamberlain’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

At some point you realize hes sincere and the book becomes personal

Any additional comments?

If your looking for a good read about the AT this books for you. If your looking for a good read about furthering your relationship with God this books for you. To find one that does them both at the same time is kind of a bit of a miracle.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

More like a day in church than an adventure story

It was clear from the beginning that Paul's intent was to find spiritual meaning in his life by hiking the AT. His trail name "Apostle" at the beginning of this book should have given me a clue. While I highly applaud his accomplishment and sympathize with the personal loss that motivated him on his journey, I found his continual conversations with God and his dysfunctional relating of random event to the intervention of God to be not only distracting but forced me to skip ahead to avoid another evangelical rants. If your looking for a good informational book on hiking the AT, I would pass this one by. There are other books that provide more information and meaningful content without the diversions from the pulpit. This book is more fitting to classified in the "Religion" section of the site.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Motivational and great advice to prepare for this hike

Loved listening to this ; wonderful introduction to his story with all that led to this undertaking as well as a great description of his personal life journey; it has moving and at times humorous human interactions of his feelings through out. Well done ! I want to do this hike even more after listening to this !

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Way TOO preachy!

I'll start by saying that this was one of the best books I've read about the Appalachian Trail. Unfortunately, which is not covered in the description of this book, is that the author was using this book as a means to spread the word of God. I almost gave it a 1 because I spent nearly $20 for a book that I thought was about the Appalachian Trail , and it was but it was also lots and lots of preaching.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

God is my hiking partner

Great story of hiking the Appalachian trail but a little too much religion for my liking.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

50% Hiking Story/50% Religious Diatribe

Any additional comments?

As noted by several other reviewers, this is about equal parts adventure story and religious diatribe. I would be fine with listening to a book about a spiritual journey, if I knew what I was getting myself into. If your cool with that, go for it. Also, I wasn't a huge fan of the narrator -- his tone, pace, and inflection bothered me a bit...but that may've just been the story.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

what a story of how powerful the human spirit is

loved this book. Paul found his life again on the hiking trail. he not only found a way to continue his life without his wife but also found God and developed a faith he had never had before. in doing the hardest thing he ever did- he found himself, he found God, and found victory in a new life. Very well written and very descriptive of the hiking trail. it really describes how powerful the human spirit is and how God molds our spirit to what he wants by putting us into very very difficult situations. We shall go through the fire but will come out as gold!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Way More Than I Expected

I started this book expecting to learn about a wonderful hike and, in addition to that, I learned about our wonderful Creator!
Good job Paul Stutzman. I hope to follow in your shoes some day.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • GeorgeBR
  • 03-21-18

More about religion than hiking

If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

I have no problem with being religious, but this book is spoilt by the constant religious undertones. In fact, I'd say it's more a religion book than a hiking book. I have not problem with his past (strictly) religious upbringing, and the sad death of his wife, but the constant god-speak was too much for me. Looking back at the book, I don't remember a thing about the hike!

Has Hiking Through put you off other books in this genre?

No

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Narrator is fine

What character would you cut from Hiking Through?

n/a

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-08-17

Be preached at.

Gave the book a chance, listened to half of it. Too much talk about a Christian god, too preaching. The narrator doesn't have a nice voice to listen to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-11-18

hiking

great book. very touching. you got a real sense of what it would be like hiking the trail.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • ecologist
  • 01-02-18

eat, hike, pray, repeat for 5 months

What disappointed you about Hiking Through?

I congratulate the author on his hike and personal journey. However, 5 months of sleeping eating and hiking honestly does get a little dull. I feel this book may only suit a unique group of hiking religious. I am a hiker but still found it very slow going. Then it takes a very strange turn when (spoiler alert) God speaks to him. I kept listening thinking there would be some valuable life lesson that I could learn but was disappointed. I thought the people he met could be explored a little more to add substance to the text. I also found it odd that he only interacted with male hikers and the only mention of a woman on the entire trail had no substance whatsoever other than being good looking and too useless to set up her own tent.