An inspirational and gripping first-person account of determination, adversity, and survival against the odds.
“Uplifting and brave.”—Stylist (UK)
“I remember the sound my body made when I hit the ground. A sharp crack. One that cut through the thump of my weight against the desert floor. Then the white heat of pain that stabbed through my body, escaping through my mouth in an almighty howl.”
Anxious and burnt out by her hectic life in London and feeling increasingly lonely, Claire Nelson escaped halfway around the world to Joshua Tree National Park where she hoped to clear her head and reconnect with herself. While on a day hike, the New Zealand journalist lost her footing and fell 25 feet, gravely injuring herself. Miles off any trail by mistake, without a cell phone signal, she fought for her life. For four days she lay alone in the desert exposed to the extreme climate of the Southern California wilderness and the dangerous wildlife—coyotes and rattlesnakes—which inhabited it. Miraculously, searchers eventually reached her and were shocked to find her alive. Her ordeal, survival, and rescue made headlines around the world.
In Things I Learned from Falling, Claire reflects on those transformative four days and what she discovered about loneliness, anxiety, strength, and perseverance, and offers insights that can help anyone faced with overwhelming adversity survive it all.