from other authors
For people like Amy Racina, there are no tragedies in life:
accidents beget spiritual connections, the struggle of recovery
produces affirmation, and adversity becomes opportunity with
a simple flick of faith. Far too seldom does a survival story
come to someone who can interpret its messages for the rest
of us, yet that is what Amy does best. From my own experience
of survival, I found her summary of the spiritual tools that
helped her endure and flourish to be chock full of penetrating
truth. Future survivors would do well to study up on Chapter
35 before their big test! -Aron
Ralston, author of “Between a Rock and a Hard Place”
There are few books that grip me from page one, and “Angels
In The Wilderness” was one of them. Being a lover of
survival stories, I was most drawn to this aspect of Amy's
story, but what I came away with was a deeper appreciation
for, as Alfred Lansing wrote as a dedication in Endurance,
'Whatever it is that makes men accomplish the impossible.'
Of course, (wo)men is more appropriate in today's day and
age, and Amy's honest, and descriptive prose make it another
story that will pass the test of time and be referred to for
years as yet another example of an ordinary person accomplishing
an extraordinary feat, and living to tell the story. -
Eric Blehm, author of “The Last Season”
This is the best book I have read in a very long time. Just
reading the synopsis on the book jacket, I was moved to tears.
And from there, it kept getting better. I could not put it
down...had to read it all in one sitting. Besides being an
incredible human being--as you will see as you read about
her accident, her days alone in the wilderness, her dramatic
rescue, and her courageous recovery--Amy Racina is an exceptionally
fine writer and story-teller. So many times, I found my self
right there with her, feeling my own helplessness, mortality,
fear, hope, self-doubt, courage, and gratitude. After reading
this book, I am inspired to live my own life more fully. I
hope that feeling lasts! It is with reverence for the human
spirit that I recommend this book to you."-Susan
Campbell, author of Getting Real, and Saying What's Real."
epic of initiation: separation, trials, providence, transformation,
and return. An utter inspiration for the soul’s journey
to wholeness and heart. The voice of Amy Racina is an angel
from the wilderness, come to bring us an important message
about the wonders and perils of our world." -Anodea
Judith, author of Eastern Body, Western Mind and Waking the
It’s 1 A.M. and tears are rolling down my eyes as I
read the final draft of this book as it goes to press. I’ve
worked in publishing for twenty years, and I’ve read
hundreds, perhaps thousands, of manuscripts, by some of the
most influential and inspiring authors of our time. But I
can’t remember a time when a book affected me as deeply
as Angels in the Wilderness has done.
The story in these pages is intense. You will laugh, you will
cry, but from the first page, this book will hold you, and
not let you go. As a story of human courage and persistence,
it is unparalleled. As a parable that challenges us to find
the best within ourselves, it is remarkable. As an honest
and beautifully-written story, it is searing. And as a reminder
that in the most desperate of circumstances, grace, humor,
wisdom and the gentle touch of God’s spirit are available,
it is profound. -Dawson Church,
editor Healing the Heart of the World author Soul Medicine
Angels In The Wilderness: The True Story Of One
Woman's Survival Against All Odds is the biographical
story of how heroine and author Amy Racina became lost in
deep wilderness and faced a truly life-threatening situation.
After falling sixty feet onto a granite boulder during a solo
hike in the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range of Northern California,
she kept herself alive through sheer determination. Dragging
herself by her hands despite exhaustion and pain, she survived
four days until her cries were heard by another hiker and
she was airlifted out of the canyon. Angels In The Wilderness
was written shortly after her miraculous survival, and includes
black-and-white photographs as well as quotes from a journal
she kept while hiking the trail. The 'you are there' experience
of survival is especially fresh and absorbing. A profound
true story of human courage and the will to live. - Midwest
Book Review - October 2005
Award-winning graphic artist Amy Racina went on her first
backpacking trip with her family at age sixteen. This was
the beginning of a life-long love affair. As an adult she
found herself often “suffused with longing to be in
the mountains as I make my way through ordinary life.”
Amy made it a custom to spend some time alone in the wilderness
each year, and in the summer of 2003 she decided to make her
“trip of a lifetime” through some of the roughest,
most inaccessible, and most staggeringly beautiful terrain
of the Sierra Mountains. But in the far flung reaches of the
Sierras, Amy lost her trail, and then with one life-changing
step, fell over sixty feet onto a harsh slab of rock, breaking
numerous bones, smashing her nose, and sustaining severe bruises
all over her body. She was already off trail and had not seen
another human being in two full days. This is the remarkable
story of how she survived for four days, unable to stand and
barely able to move, how she was rescued by three passing
“angels” who heard her calls for help—and
how she recovered and returned to her beloved mountains less
than two years later.
More than the story itself, the writing here is suffused with
glowing honesty and wonder, bracing as mountain air. “’Please
let me live. Please help me,’ I pray. . . . I am led
to remember that eventually all humankind will die. . . .
I feel the quality of the sacred in the very desperation of
my situation.” The “quality of the sacred”
is precisely what characterizes this courageous and oddly
tender tale.- Fearless Reviews
- November 2005
This extraordinary tale is one of the very few wilderness
survival epics. Most solo hikers who suffer severe injury
off trail do not make it out. Their story is told, if at all,
on tattered scraps of paper found on their body. Amy Racina
fell sixty feet onto granite, both legs were broken, a hip
and kneecap were fractured, and she had open wounds.
Once I got started on this book, I hated to put it down. This
is the kind of thing every hiker pushes to the back of their
mind. "So there's no trail, I've done this lots of times.
I'm always careful, so I'll be fine". Amy wasn't fine.
The book starts with the fall. The first sentence is "So
this is how it ends." as she thinks she is going to die.
The next two chapters give you the background - how she grew
up a hiker, and how she was on this "trip of a lifetime"
when she fell. I'm following along, nodding my head as she
describes the backcountry and plans her trip, but I'm tense
knowing what is to come.
After the fall, she decides to try to get down the canyon
where she should hit a trail. She can move a few yards a day,
sometimes calling for help. At maybe a day from death, someone
hears her and the rescue begins. This is enough already for
a good book, but there is a whole second part of this story
that also demands your attention. It took a large support
system of friends, and an immense amount of painful and exhausting
physical therapy - the Repairing Amy part.
Amy is now out backpacking again. We have a friend who has
been going through physical therapy for a stroke for a couple
of years, and this book made me realize that I really didn't
have a clue about what she was going through.
For me as a backpacker, the drama of the hiking story is the
compelling reason to read the book, but I recommend it to
anyone who is encountering the experience of repairing the
body through extensive physical therapy. It is very, very
difficult, but it can be done.
Backpack 45 – February 2006
Spiritual lessons at their best - In telling
the story of her terrifying fall, miraculous rescue, and complete
recovery, Amy fully engages the reader. She proves herself
to be an excellent storyteller. Filling us in on background
details, she takes us through her preparation for what will
be the hike of her life. Traveling with her along the trail
with vivid images of the beauty of the wilderness is exhilarating.
During the four long days and nights of solitude in the ravine
after the fall, her strength of mind, body, and spirit begins
to be revealed. The shattering pain of her rescue brings tears.
Once she is in the hospital friends begin to gather, providing
the support she needs for the long, painful recovery process.
She learns, and teaches us all, that one life indeed does
make a difference.
As much as I enjoyed the story, one of my favorite parts of
the book is contained in the last few chapters where Amy shares
with us the spiritual lessons that helped her through her
ordeal. She speaks of the spiritual tools that not only kept
her alive, but helped her overcome pain and suffering. She
speaks at length of gratitude. In a few short chapters she
crystallizes for the reader those threads of spirit that weave
in and out of the entire story. There is much that I have
in common with Amy through beliefs, connections to a variety
of people (in average places and alternative communities alike),
and survival of life altering physical trauma. She inspires
me to tell my own story.
I would recommend this book to most any adults and young adults
I know. The story is wonderfully written. The lessons learned
apply to each of us. It greatly exceeds my expectations based
on the synopsis. I am grateful for the chance to read and
review "Angels in the Wilderness." -
Reader Views (Abbie Yandle) – July 2006
Awe of Love, Life, and Miracles I just finished reading
this book. I'm still searching for the words to describe the
way I felt throughout the journey of the book. It was beautifully
written to express the raw emotion of Amy's turmoil and aspects
of the impacts it left on her life. It makes you believe in
life as a miracle and wonderful changes that fate brings us
all. I'm so glad Amy survived and wrote her story for us.
An Epic Tale. An epic true-life adventure
tale. Wilderness survival at it's finest. Excellent story
Amazing Spirited Woman. Thank you Amy for coming
back to share your awesome story and your incredible inspiration.
You are truly an amazing spirited woman!
I don't know anyone who would have come through this experience
with so much style let alone live to write such a stunning
account of their ordeal. Amy's courageous tale is such an
inspiration to me as I am sure it will be to all who read
AND down to Earth . . . . . . . Literally. Just as
an adventure story it is exciting reading. As a soul-examination
in the face of death it is enlightening reading. As an exploration
of life versus risk it is intriguing reading. And she is a
writer with a superb way with words, a great pleasure to read.
You will want to read this book more than once.
book, great story Read almost the whole thing in
one sitting. Wanted to find out how Amy got rescued, wanted
to find out how she recovered, wanted to find out how she
paid the medical bills, wanted to find out how her community
of family and friends dealt with her needs and wanted to find
out how she processed all this stuff internally and who she
became as a result of the whole story. Lovely, scary, insightful
and inspiring book. Thank you Amy.
to be missed! Amy interweaves personal history, her
hair raising accident and recovery, and introspection about
the experience into a searingly honest account of one person's
spirituality. Impossible to put down. Her accident becomes
a lens through which she focuses the value of everyday life.
Her revelations are shared with generosity and grace, becoming
a celebration of humanity. The book offers a rare window on
introversion at its glorious best.
Truth, Clarity and Heart
This book is sure to become a literary classic! Every page
rings with truth, clarity and heart. The attention to detail
is woven with wrenching emotional depth to create an engaging
read. An incredible adventure tale by a promising new writing