Elk River Books will host the book launch celebration for wildlife filmmaker Brad Orsted’s debut memoir Through the Wilderness: My Journey of Redemption and Healing in the American Wild on Thursday, June 29.
“When Orsted’s fifteen-month-old daughter, Marley, died mysteriously at the home of his mother, he descended into madness. Blaming himself, he plunged into an abyss of grief, guilt and self-recrimination, fueled by prescription drugs and alcohol. He planned his suicide as his wife, Stacey, searched for a new beginning. She finally found a job in Yellowstone National Park and, with their daughters, Mazzy and Chloe, the pair fled Michigan, looking for refuge and redemption in the 2.2 million acres of glorious American wilderness.
“Through the Wilderness begins in Yellowstone, five months after the family’s arrival in 2012, when, in an alcoholic haze, Brad stumbled into a field of sage and survived a face-to-face encounter with an adult male grizzly bear. For the first time in almost two years, he realized he wanted to live.
“Brad’s ten-year odyssey is about finding the wild inside the human heart. It is a journey of the spirit—a journey to forgiveness and sobriety, to love and life, to memory, and ultimately, to Marley.”
Acclaimed author and naturalist Rick Bass notes, “The spirit in this book is as enormous as the great land and great bears to which Orsted was directed. In converting pain—agony—into beauty, Orsted shares with us not just his great spirit, but that of the land that has taken him in.”
Orsted’s passion for wildlife cinematography and photography has led to work with top networks like: Nat Geo Wild, The BBC, PBS, Nature, and The Smithsonian Channel. He was the assistant director of the award-winning film The Beast of our Time: Climate Change and Grizzly Bears, narrated by Jeff Bridges and featuring Doug Peacock, Terry Tempest Williams and Rick Bass.
Elk River Books is located at 122 S. 2nd St. in downtown Livingston. The free event begins at 7 p.m., and a book signing and reception will follow.