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17 Inspiring Books About Alaska

Take one look at Alaska’s vast landscape and you’ll see why it has inspired people for generations. The land seems to stretch forever–wild, beautiful, and mysterious. If you don’t already dream of the magnificent glaciers, open skies, and emerald forests of the Last Frontier, you’re about to. Here are some of our favorite books that celebrate this great unknown, from thrilling adventures to inspiring love stories, all set in Alaska.

a calm river with snowy mountain peaks and pine trees in the distance
Kenai River. Photo © Raymona Pooler/Dreamstime.

Non-Fiction

Into the Wild

By Jon Krakauer
Available at Amazon
What could cause a person to give up all of their savings and possessions to venture alone and unprepared into the wilderness of Alaska? Follow the mysterious and ultimately fatal journey of wanderer Christopher McCandless in this unforgettable tale of self-discovery across America.”

Fifty Miles from Tomorrow: A Memoir of Alaska and the Real People

By William L. Iggiagruk Hensley
Available at Amazon
Immerse yourself in the life of a Native Alaskan hero, from his traditional Iñupiaq upbringing above the Arctic Circle to his lobbying efforts that changed the future of the United States. If you’ve ever wanted to understand the culture, traditions, and modern triumphs of Native Alaskans, this should be your next read.

Blonde Indian: An Alaska Native Memoir

By Ernestine Hayes
Available at Amazon
In this eye-opening memoir, an Alaska Native details the struggles and strife of her Tlingit community: poverty, racism, alcoholism, and alienation. Combining Native legends, personal narrative, and history, this heart-wrenching but honest look at Native life provides important lessons in humanity to every reader.


Fiction

The Great Alone

By Kristin Hannah
Available at Amazon
When a Vietnam War veteran and his family attempt to escape their problems by moving to Alaska, they find a whole new set of struggles waiting for them in the harsh and unpredictable wilderness.

The Simple Wild

By K.A. Tucker
Available at Amazon
When Calla trades city life for a chance to reconnect with her estranged father in Alaska, she can’t decide which is worse: using an outhouse, not having Wi-Fi, or dealing with Jonah, an annoyingly handsome pilot who can’t wait to send her packing. Hopeless romantics will fall head over heels for this story about family bonds, forgiveness, and star-crossed love on the Last Frontier.

The Smell of Other People’s Houses

By Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock
Available at Amazon
This heartfelt YA story explores family, friendship, and love through the lives of four teenagers in 1970s Alaska. With its lovable characters and beautiful writing, this one will pull on your heartstrings.


Travel Guides

Are you dreaming of exploring the towering mountains, breathtaking glaciers, and rushing rivers of Alaska? With multiple itineraries, helpful safety resources and tips, and up-to-date information for optimal planning, these guidebooks are a must-have for outdoor adventurers.



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