A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail entertains. This Bill Bryson travelogue captures this decidedly British American’s account of walking roughly one-third of the Appalachian Trail from the southern end in Georgia through northern parts in Maine.
Bryson takes pains to discuss his trip and perspective in a naturally flowing, observational tone. You get a sense of Bryson‘s humor, his sense of propriety regarding trail etiquette, his feelings for how the trail could be incorporated with its surroundings (including at least examples for how Europe does things better), and some recommendations for how sensible funding could lead to more usage of the trail itself.
As narrator, that Bryson takes pains to give you some science works well because it informs the experience with intelligence for what is happening within the purview of the trip. That you get to see the trip with characters like overweight old friend Stephen Katz, interloping Mary Ellen, famously lost Chicken John, and a lonely old moose that wouldn’t remember the woods for the trees provides warmth and feeling to the storytelling. I personally took affection in the experience of Bryson’s lens, despite some others who saw opportunities to be easily offended…I refer to some of the reviews of the book that I read recently on Goodreads.
My rating of a Walk in the Woods is 4-star out of 5; My review is of the book with no awareness of the 2015 Robert Redford movie. A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail entertains.
Matt – Sunday, March 5, 2017