Banned Books Week - September 24 - 30

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Book review--The Road by Cormac McCarthy

This is one of those books that really makes you think.  The whole time I was reading it, I was thinking, "What would I do in this situation?  Would I be able to survive, to protect my children, to feed myself and my children?" 

I remember seeing Cormac McCarthy on Oprah and he was talking about his young son (he had another son very late in life), how his relationship with his son was partially the inspiration for this book.  I can imagine that him being an older father and knowing that he will possibly not see his son grow to adulthood really had him thinking about the world he would be leaving his son behind to live in.  Would he be leaving him to an apocalypse or a global catastrophe? 

Anyone reading this book will have difficulty with the subject matter.  And if you're a parent, it will be even more difficult.  But it is a book that must be read because the issues and situations in the book do need to be thought about and even discussed.  Although a work of fiction, it is very plausible that something like this could happen.  I believe that Mr. McCarthy also had this in mind when writing it...the world needs to think beyond our every day existence, if not for ourselves, than for our children and our future generations.

Beyond the message I feel is present here is also a very suspenseful novel that will have you on the edge of your seat through it's short 241 page count.  It is also a poignant story about the love of a father for his son and how he will do whatever it takes to protect him and help him to survive.  Yes, I'll admit that I cried some tears over this one.

Two words for you...read it!

About the book:
A searing, postapocalyptic novel destined to become Cormac McCarthy's masterpiece.

A father and his son walk alone through burned America. Nothing moves in the ravaged landscape save the ash on the wind. It is cold enough to crack stones, and when the snow falls it is gray. They sky is dark. Their destination is the coast, although they don't know what, if anything, awaits them there. They have nothing; just a pistol to defend themselves against the lawless bands that stalk the road, the clothes they are wearting, a cart of scavenged food—and each other.

The Road is the profoundly moving story of a journey. It boldly imagines a future in which no hope remains, but in which the father and his son, “each the other's world entire,” are sustained by love. Awesome in the totality of its vision, it is an unflinching meditation on the worst and the best that we are capable of: ultimate destructiveness, desperate tenacity, and the tenderness that keeps two people alive in the face of total devastation. (from Fantastic Fiction)

Happy Reading!

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**FTC Disclaimer:  I purchased this book with my own money.

15 comments:

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  1. I found this book extremely cold. But that was a success of the author, who was able to create this entire new world, and with it, a new world order, yet maintain that primal instinct of protecting our young loved ones.

    As someone who is suffering mild "green fatigue" (kind of sick of being lectured at about the environment), I found it a tad didactic, so I can't say I cried :P but it was well written for sure.

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  2. I heard that McCarthy had a volcanic catastrophe in mind when he wrote this.

    Great review!

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  3. After I read this I felt just a little let-down...I mean, I enjoyed it. But after reading Swan Song by Robert McCammon, which was also a post-apocalyptic novel, it paled in comparison. I guess you can't really compare the two...McCammon is an author of horror where McCarthy isn't. It was a very well written saga, and yes, it does make you think "What if this were me? What would I do?"

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  4. I loved this book - it was fantastic. I think you hit the nail on the head, I liked it so well because it did make think, what would I do? My husband I had fun discussing it (down to which dog we'd take with us).

    It was a stark novel, but I thought the message of hope overall was beautiful.

    BTW - I like your music selections whenever I come to your blog! It's always a song that is one of my favorites:-)

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  5. Great review. I think I have one of his other books on my Fill In The Gaps Challenge list (All the Pretty Horses) but I'll have to add this one next time.

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  6. I liked this book, I thought it was powerful. And yes, it made me think. Though the author doesn't specify what happened to cause the fire, it makes me wonder about how we treat the planet, and what it might eventually do to cleanse itself.
    I do not think I would react bravely!

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  7. I have thought of reading this book. And just keep letting it go. I like to escape in my books and not think about what might or could be in the future of the world. And along with the bad things happening now as well.

    I have heard this is a really good book, but I am just not ready to pick it up yet. I may do so some day.

    Great review!

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  8. This was a fantastic book. My husband and I made the mistake of reading it while on vacation in Florida several years ago. It is definitely NOT vacation reading, but we both talked about it for weeks after. I agree that this is a must-read!

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  9. My middle son is reading this right now and absolutely loving it despite the bleakness of it.

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  10. I loved this book first of all. I had put of reading it for so long and when we read it for the SciFi/Fantasty board at B&N Book Clubs I finally had not excuse to not read it. I kicked myself for weeks for not reading it sooner.

    The one thing I took away from this book more than anything else was the love story between a father and a son. Their bond and love for eachother through horrific times made this more than just a postapocalyptic book. It made it more a story of love and hope.

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  11. I haven't read this one yet. I've seen the preview for the movie already and it looks powerful.

    Great review. As a parent, this sounds like a tough one.

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