One long distance hiking book I found moving and informative is Forest Under My Fingernails, by Walt McLaughlin.
It's the story of his continuous northbound hike on Vermont's Long Trail, from Massachusetts to Quebec.
Walt used an unusual and, to my mind, courageous style of hiking. Planting food caches along the way, he intentionally stayed out of towns and away from telephones for his entire trip.
If you are considering a long distance hike on any trail, this is an excellent view into the life of a thruhiker. It's not what many expect.
More about Walt...
Walt McLaughlin is an avid outdoorsman who has written extensively about his wilderness experiences. His stories, essays and poems have appeared in Adirondac, Northeast, Vermont Life, Writing Nature and dozens of other periodicals. He has several books in print, including a narrative about his solo immersion in the Alaskan bush, Arguing With the Wind (Wood Thrush Books, 2010), also available as an ebook at Amazon.com
His narrative about thruhiking Vermont’s Long Trail end-to-end, Forest Under My Fingernails, is available at www.woodthrushbooks.com
Walt also blogs regularly at www.woodswanderer.com. He lives in Saint Albans, Vermont with his wife, Judy.
Other sources to discover thruhiking friends and information
www.trailjournals.com I like Big Red's journal, and Seeker, from 2010, Read her post from Monson, Maine, about 5 days before the end.
Hike Your Own Hike, by Francis Tapon
Ten Million Steps, by M.J. Eberhardt
and, the book that shaped my life more than any other,
The Complete Walker, by Colin Fletcher
please bear with me. I'm a time and web publishing skills challenged novice.