March Book of the Month: The Cactus Eaters by Dan White

Note that March's book discussion will actually be in April... Due to scheduling issues with Easter being the last Sunday of March, I thought it would be best to postpone a week rather than go a week earlier.

For March we'll be reading The Cactus Eaters by Dan White. Another Pacific Crest Trail book, I personally found this one to be more interesting than Wild though some may disagree! Compared to Wild I felt it went more into life on the trail and the mental (and relationship) struggles that ensue on a long distance backpacking trip.

From Publishers Weekly:

Traversing broiling deserts, snowy mountain passes and dank rain forests on its crooked way from Mexico to Canada, the Pacific Coast Trail is an epic challenge for die-hard backpackers. White and his girlfriend, Melissa, set out, late in the season and bereft of experience, to tread all 2,650 miles of it, leaving behind lousy reporting jobs and hoping to find self-definition and a deepened relationship. (They call their trek the Lois and Clark Expedition.) Hilarious greenhorn misadventures ensue—including the author's ill-advised chomp, while dizzy with dehydration, into a reputedly moisture-laden prickly-pear cactus—that tested their survival skills and commitment as a couple. The trail becomes less an itinerary than a world unto itself, full of squalor, discomfort and majestic scenery, and peopled by charismatic misfits and an austere cult of ultra-light speed-hikers, as the couple rely on arcane camping gear and bizarre gummy-bear-and-marshmallow diets. The wilderness authenticity the author seeks proves elusive; all journey and no destination, the story itself eventually trails off with the hero even more callow and confused than when he started. Still, White's vivid prose and hangdog humor make readers want to keep up.

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  • Kathy D.

    Chad, Do you know when the next book club meetup will be? So sorry to have missed this one.

    April 8, 2013

  • JL

    I am really excited to join this group. I hope I can attend next time! JL

    April 8, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    First time I have attended a book club. I enjoyed it.

    April 7, 2013

  • Kathy D.

    oops! commented below.
    new to this :)

    April 5, 2013

  • Kathy D.

    I am so disappointed that I am unable to attend this session. It would have been my first :( Leaving town for the weekend unexpectedly. I am pleased I can open a space for someone on the wait list. Enjoy all.

    April 5, 2013

  • Zora G.

    Just got a copy of the book today..I think I am on the waiting list for Thursday night...I am a fast reader so no problem for Sunday! I am 3rd on the wait list for the Thursday night date..See you all on Sunday night then..

    April 2, 2013

  • Zora G.

    Am I still on the wait list too? First time!

    April 2, 2013

  • Kathy D.

    I have not joined a book club before. Looking forward to a new experience and the book sounds good.

    March 16, 2013

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