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The Hike: A Novel

af Drew Magary

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4373342,485 (3.79)6
When Ben, a suburban family man, takes a business trip to rural Pennsylvania, he decides to spend the afternoon before his dinner meeting on a short hike. Once he sets out into the woods behind his hotel, he quickly comes to realize that the path he has chosen cannot be given up easily. With no choice but to move forward, Ben finds himself falling deeper and deeper into a world of man-eating giants, bizarre demons, and colossal insects.… (mere)

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Viser 1-5 af 33 (næste | vis alle)
Some people have classified this as science fiction, but I think it's more fantasy than sci-fi, and ultimately more light horror than fantasy.

What is this weirdness?? This story is parts adventure, parts fantasy, and ultimately I wonder if it's just a philosophical journey with symbolism. I still haven't worked it out, but it's an enjoyable read, if you want to learn more about a crab's opinions and how to handle a giant, this may be for you. ( )
  Pepperwings | Aug 7, 2020 |
Weelll....I liked it. I wasn't sure about it at the beginning, but I am a fan of violence and swearing so I kept on. Ben really grew on me...I agreed with his older self that his younger self was annoying, though I can't say I'd have been any less annoying in his place! I was really neutral on him at the beginning but by the end I was rooting for him. The ending was nice too. I wasn't sure what it could look like in a way that would be satisfying but I liked it! So, in the end, worth it to read and would recommend if you're into weird shit and sarcastic talking crabs. ( )
  katebrarian | Jul 28, 2020 |
Readable, sometimes gruesome, original. At times I was impatient with the protagonist—he’s not terribly sympathetic and he has rather extreme reactions, and he’s such a masculine cliche sometimes. . I’m glad I read the whole thing, because as it happened the ending was interesting and satisfying. ( )
  dmturner | Jun 29, 2020 |
Amazing. If any of you are looking for a pure adventure of unrivaled creativity and depth transformed from utter normality to strangeness and then topped off with a great ethical and moral conclusion topped off at the end, delivered with a really strong emotional punch to the gut, then look no further.

The hike feels, at first, like a silly and sometimes rather funny adventure, starting off with a hike during a business trip. But then it soon becomes a fantasy-land and terror-strewn nightmare and then we're treated to a wonderful reversal-filled surprise after surprise.

What this isn't, even though it's written light and fast and funny, is a strictly light and fast and funny adventure. It's dark and it's soulful and it not only touches upon the idea of what Home is, but it also explores Determinism and its converse, transforming a crazy hike into a nearly spiritual exploration of The Path, whatever the path is. Our personal journey? Perhaps Journey? Regardless, it's so much more and it's a true delight to have read this.

I honestly didn't expect it to turn out this good or this deep. Bravo! My faith in humanity is restored. My faith that wildly imaginative literature continues to be written, and written fearlessly, and all the while a great Tale is told as well.

Go Ben!

Anyone want crabcakes?

I totally recommend this for EVERYONE. It's just that good. :)

"The man who sailed around his soul
From East to West, from pole to pole
With ego as his drunken captain
Greed, the mutineer, had trapped all reason in the hold

The man who walked across his heart
Who took no compass, guide or chart
To rope and tar his blood congealed
When he found his self revealed ugly and cold"

-Andy Partridge, XTC, "The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul"

( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
Let's talk for a minute about plot twists at the end of novels.

Humans have been telling stories of all different varieties for a fairly long time, so it's pretty hard to tell a story with twists and turns that are impossible to see coming. That being the case, plot twists should never be the foundation for a story. The characters are far more important. Scooby-Doo isn't a classic because the Miner Forty-Niner turned out to be the caretaker or whatever. It's all about the meddling kids! If the success or failure of a story is based entirely on a bombshell ending, then the ending becomes at best a bailout for a weak narrative and at worst a reminder of how much all the characters involved in the big twist sucked.

What purpose, then, can a surprise ending serve for quality literature? The Hike presents us with a great answer.

In The Hike, a married father of three in his mid-thirties named Ben takes a walk in the woods that goes awry. He enters, as the back cover of the book puts it, "a world of man-eating giants, demons, and colossal insects." That's not a place I want to be, and it's not a place Ben wants to be, but he's stuck there for a while, facing a series of demanding challenges on an increasingly bizarre journey. Eventually, Ben discovers he's not the only one who's been forced down such a path, and as much as I hate to admit to having emotions of any kind, the ending floored me.

As tempted as I am to spoil it, I'll instead do my best to summarize the ending's significance. Upon finishing the book I immediately thought of something Dostoevsky wrote in The Idiot. “There is something at the bottom of every new human thought, every thought of genius, or even every earnest thought that springs up in any brain, which can never be communicated to others, even if one were to write volumes about it and were explaining one's idea for thirty-five years; there's something left which cannot be induced to emerge from your brain, and remains with you forever; and with it you will die, without communicating to anyone perhaps the most important of your ideas.” Drew Magary takes this idea and demonstrates what to do with it. We must learn to understand how incapable we are of fully grasping the inner lives of the people about whom we care the most, and we then must find the best way to love them within that understanding.

So what makes The Hike's ending great? The denouement of Ben's journey actually enhances the significance of each step he took along the way. His discovery of who else has taken a walk like his gives both him and the reader a better understanding of why his trip mattered. Yeah, it's kind of cool that I didn't see it coming, but a good, fulfilling ending to a novel is more surprising than a plot twist could ever be. ( )
  bgramman | May 9, 2020 |
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Forfatter navnRolleHvilken slags forfatterVærk?Status
Drew Magaryprimær forfatteralle udgaverberegnet
Lane, ChristopherFortællerhovedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Audio, BrilliancePublishermedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Sweeney, WillOmslagsfotograf/tegner/...medforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
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When Ben, a suburban family man, takes a business trip to rural Pennsylvania, he decides to spend the afternoon before his dinner meeting on a short hike. Once he sets out into the woods behind his hotel, he quickly comes to realize that the path he has chosen cannot be given up easily. With no choice but to move forward, Ben finds himself falling deeper and deeper into a world of man-eating giants, bizarre demons, and colossal insects.

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