It’s been 24 years since that fateful day in April 1992 when Chris McCandless hiked into the Alaskan wilderness hoping to make sense of his life. Five months later, he was found dead. McCandless has since become a polarizing figure with articles, books, and films made about his life and his journey of self-discovery.
McCandless’ story is told in Jon Krakaeur’s book, Into the Wild. Since its publication in 1996, the book has become an international bestseller and is now mandatory reading in high schools and colleges across North America. The book was adapted into a film of the same title in 2007.
Even though it’s been more than 20 years since the original story captivated the world, a lot of details have been missing, until now. Carine McCandless, Chris’ younger sister, published her own book, The Wild Truth, detailing the violence and abuse the siblings endured in the McCandless home. Her book was published in November 2014.
In her book, Carine says they experienced a traumatic childhood and that their father often got violent when he was drunk and took out his frustrations on Chris because he was the firstborn. That, according to Carine, was the reason why Chris left their home and embarked on his journey.
Carine says she kept quiet about these secrets because she wanted to protect her family, but she’s telling the story now because she feels she’s doing a disservice to her brother by hiding the truth. She also feels that the people who have been inspired by Chris’ story deserve to know the full details, and she’s now finally ready to share them.
Watch the video below to see Carine talk about her new book and growing up with Chris: