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After Paul Stutzman lost his wife to breast cancer, he sensed a tug on his heart--the call to a challenge, the call to pursue a dream. Paul left his stable career, traveled to Georgia, and took his first steps on the Appalachian Trail. What he learned during the next four and a half months changed his life--and will change readers' lives as well.

In Hiking Through, readers will join Paul on his remarkable 2,176-mile hike through fourteen states in search of peace and a renewed sense of purpose, meeting fascinating and funny people along the way. They'll discover that every choice we make along the path has consequences for the journey and will come away with a new understanding of God's grace and guidance. Nature-lovers, armchair adventurers, and those grieving a loss may not be able to hike the AT themselves, but they can go on this spiritual pilgrimage with a truly humble and sympathetic guide.
Published: Baker Publishing Group on
ISBN: 9781441238115
List price: $7.99
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One half travelogue and one half religious -- I enjoyed both halves immensely.more
I was a little nervous when I heard about this one. The author is a deeply religious man and I always fear being preached to, but my fears were never realized. Although religious, the thoughtful author warned the reader when he was going to delve deeply into faith issues. I was grateful, but read the sections anyway.After the death of his beloved wife, Paul Stutzman decided to walk the Appalachian Trail. Yes, he walked over 2000 miles. This little hike takes a lot of planning, my friends, and it sounds like he planned well. He left the job that no longer gave him joy, and hiked.The story of his hike, the characters he met, and their stories, were beyond fascinating. I wish I had his courage, and resolve. Travelling through many states, he met amazing people, and had delicious conversations. I would love to have been a mouse in his pocket (a tiny skinny one, so as not to be heavy). Through really rough weather, wind, rain, cold, exhaustion, sunshine, flowers, loneliness, he hiked, on and on. I am not an outdoor person, but if anything could inspire me, it is this book.I highly recommend this book to anyone, struggling or not. It is an amazing journey, and one you will enjoy.I received this book from Maia at Phenix & Phenix publicists. Thank you so much for this journey!more
From my blog...Hiking Through is an astonishingly beautiful memoir of a man struggling to reconcile his grief while rediscovering whom he is while learning to truly see everything that the world has to offer. Paul had always enjoyed hiking as a release, and a dream of his was to hike the Appalachian Trail. However, Paul was busy working and raising a family so the Appalachian Trail dream remained unfulfilled. Paul's world is turned upside down when his wife Mary is diagnosed with cancer, and being strong in their faith, they held out hope. Within a few years, Paul is a widower going through the everyday motions and felt a calling to the Appalachian Trail. A year passes and Paul is still grieving the passing of Mary and realises he needs a change so he quits his restaurant management job he held for 17 years and decides to fulfill his dream to hike the Appalachian Trail. Paul's goals in the beginning were to heal and spread the message to all men to cherish their families, their wives and so as he begins his journey he chooses the trail named Apostle for his journey. Paul writes his memoir as though he is sitting and conversing with the reader. One could easily envision having coffee, though Paul would want a Coke, with him while he describes the preparations for the thru-hike (hiking the entire Appalachian trail through 14 states and over 2,176 miles), in and of itself a daunting task. Paul Stutzman is a man of faith and also readily admits his mistakes, miscalculations and errors; he is human and definitely a person I would be honored to know. Hoping to gain insight while pushing the bounds of his beliefs, Paul set off on his 5 month journey, revealing to the reader advise on hiking, revelations, life lessons, while introducing the reader to various hiking companions, along will vivid descriptions of the various scenes he encountered on his journey. One of my favourite lessons comes in Chapter 10 and hopefully I shall be able to impart the same wisdom I have gained from Hiking Through to my children. Hiking Through is a wonderful narrative of Paul's journey to rediscover himself, to shed stress and grief, renew his faith and to learn to be truly happy. Hiking Through is written in a warm, witty, and friendly tone, as though he is speaking directly to the reader. Throughout the book, Paul shares his life experiences, those of fellow hikers, and the lessons he learned throughout his long journey hiking the Appalachian Trail. I would recommend Hiking Through to everyone.more
Mr. Stutzman faced one of the biggest fears we married people face; he lost his beloved wife far too soon. They worked hard. They had plans for retirement. Big dreams. But because of cancer Mr. Stutzman was left with an overwhelming feeling of loss, of why and of not having appreciated his wife nearly enough. So with not just a little bit of fear but a lot of faith in his God he set off on one of his biggest dreams - a hike through of the Appalachian Trail.I think this book appealed to me because when I was in my late 30ies I discovered I had a brain aneurysm. Fortunately for me, doctors were able to operate and I am still here. Another progressive brain abnormality was found (yes, I have a bad brain) and I have lots of problems now - but I am alive. It caused my hubby and me to totally re-think our retirement plan. This is why I am now on a goat farm in Montana instead of living in Hawaii but that is another story.Mr. Stutzman's writing style is very easy. He is honest about himself and the characters he meets along the trail. His mission is to spread the word to men - appreciate your wives while you have them because they can be taken in a heartbeat. He learns so much on his seemingly endless hike - about life, about himself and about his faith.I have been to several of the stops along the Appalachian Trail that are described in the book and this made the book all the more interesting to me. It brought back some great memories of my travels around in the fifthwheel with my hiking hubby. He did several sections of the trail. He also read the book and enjoyed it. I can tell you that he does appreciate me very much.This is an amazing book with a powerful message. I am very thankful to have read it.more
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Reviews

One half travelogue and one half religious -- I enjoyed both halves immensely.more
I was a little nervous when I heard about this one. The author is a deeply religious man and I always fear being preached to, but my fears were never realized. Although religious, the thoughtful author warned the reader when he was going to delve deeply into faith issues. I was grateful, but read the sections anyway.After the death of his beloved wife, Paul Stutzman decided to walk the Appalachian Trail. Yes, he walked over 2000 miles. This little hike takes a lot of planning, my friends, and it sounds like he planned well. He left the job that no longer gave him joy, and hiked.The story of his hike, the characters he met, and their stories, were beyond fascinating. I wish I had his courage, and resolve. Travelling through many states, he met amazing people, and had delicious conversations. I would love to have been a mouse in his pocket (a tiny skinny one, so as not to be heavy). Through really rough weather, wind, rain, cold, exhaustion, sunshine, flowers, loneliness, he hiked, on and on. I am not an outdoor person, but if anything could inspire me, it is this book.I highly recommend this book to anyone, struggling or not. It is an amazing journey, and one you will enjoy.I received this book from Maia at Phenix & Phenix publicists. Thank you so much for this journey!more
From my blog...Hiking Through is an astonishingly beautiful memoir of a man struggling to reconcile his grief while rediscovering whom he is while learning to truly see everything that the world has to offer. Paul had always enjoyed hiking as a release, and a dream of his was to hike the Appalachian Trail. However, Paul was busy working and raising a family so the Appalachian Trail dream remained unfulfilled. Paul's world is turned upside down when his wife Mary is diagnosed with cancer, and being strong in their faith, they held out hope. Within a few years, Paul is a widower going through the everyday motions and felt a calling to the Appalachian Trail. A year passes and Paul is still grieving the passing of Mary and realises he needs a change so he quits his restaurant management job he held for 17 years and decides to fulfill his dream to hike the Appalachian Trail. Paul's goals in the beginning were to heal and spread the message to all men to cherish their families, their wives and so as he begins his journey he chooses the trail named Apostle for his journey. Paul writes his memoir as though he is sitting and conversing with the reader. One could easily envision having coffee, though Paul would want a Coke, with him while he describes the preparations for the thru-hike (hiking the entire Appalachian trail through 14 states and over 2,176 miles), in and of itself a daunting task. Paul Stutzman is a man of faith and also readily admits his mistakes, miscalculations and errors; he is human and definitely a person I would be honored to know. Hoping to gain insight while pushing the bounds of his beliefs, Paul set off on his 5 month journey, revealing to the reader advise on hiking, revelations, life lessons, while introducing the reader to various hiking companions, along will vivid descriptions of the various scenes he encountered on his journey. One of my favourite lessons comes in Chapter 10 and hopefully I shall be able to impart the same wisdom I have gained from Hiking Through to my children. Hiking Through is a wonderful narrative of Paul's journey to rediscover himself, to shed stress and grief, renew his faith and to learn to be truly happy. Hiking Through is written in a warm, witty, and friendly tone, as though he is speaking directly to the reader. Throughout the book, Paul shares his life experiences, those of fellow hikers, and the lessons he learned throughout his long journey hiking the Appalachian Trail. I would recommend Hiking Through to everyone.more
Mr. Stutzman faced one of the biggest fears we married people face; he lost his beloved wife far too soon. They worked hard. They had plans for retirement. Big dreams. But because of cancer Mr. Stutzman was left with an overwhelming feeling of loss, of why and of not having appreciated his wife nearly enough. So with not just a little bit of fear but a lot of faith in his God he set off on one of his biggest dreams - a hike through of the Appalachian Trail.I think this book appealed to me because when I was in my late 30ies I discovered I had a brain aneurysm. Fortunately for me, doctors were able to operate and I am still here. Another progressive brain abnormality was found (yes, I have a bad brain) and I have lots of problems now - but I am alive. It caused my hubby and me to totally re-think our retirement plan. This is why I am now on a goat farm in Montana instead of living in Hawaii but that is another story.Mr. Stutzman's writing style is very easy. He is honest about himself and the characters he meets along the trail. His mission is to spread the word to men - appreciate your wives while you have them because they can be taken in a heartbeat. He learns so much on his seemingly endless hike - about life, about himself and about his faith.I have been to several of the stops along the Appalachian Trail that are described in the book and this made the book all the more interesting to me. It brought back some great memories of my travels around in the fifthwheel with my hiking hubby. He did several sections of the trail. He also read the book and enjoyed it. I can tell you that he does appreciate me very much.This is an amazing book with a powerful message. I am very thankful to have read it.more
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