North Pond hermit author to speak

BAR HARBOR — Author Michael Finkel will bring “The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit” to the Jesup Memorial Library for an author talk and book signing on Tuesday, April 3, at 7 p.m.


In 1986, 20-year-old Christopher Knight left his home in Massachusetts, drove to the North Pond area of Maine and disappeared into the woods. Knight would not have a conversation with another human being until nearly three decades later, when he was arrested for stealing food.

Finkel extensively interviewed Knight and details not only Knight’s life in seclusion, including why he left and what he learned, but also the challenges he has faced since.

Finkel’s book details how Knight lived in a tent even through brutal winters and survived by utilizing his wits and courage. Knight developed ways to store edibles and water and to avoid freezing to death. Knight’s only interaction with the outside world was when he broke into nearby cottages for food, clothing, reading material and other provisions. He took only what he needed but terrified the surrounding community, who were long unable to solve the mysterious burglaries.

The book is “a meditation on solitude, wildness and survival,” wrote The Wall Street Journal. “Field and Stream” wrote “[Knight’s] story will speak to anyone who has ever walked through the wilderness and considered, even for a moment, whether ever to leave.”

Finkel is the author of “True Story: Murder, Memoir, Mea Culpa,” which was adapted into a 2015 major motion picture. He has written for “National Geographic,” “GQ,” “Rolling Stone,” “Esquire,” “Vanity Fair,” “The Atlantic” and “The New York Times Magazine.” He lives in western Montana. Visit

Books will be on sale that night courtesy of co-sponsor Sherman’s Books. Contact the Jesup at 288-4245 or [email protected].



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