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Saturday, November 13, 2010

Review: The Road by Cormac McCarthy

Title: The Road
Author: Cormac McCarthy
Author's Website: http://www.cormacmccarthy.com/
Publisher: Knopf
Publication Date: September 26, 2006
Pages: 241
Source: Borrowed from my aunt (Thanks Auntie!)
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Description (from Goodreads): 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. The 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 wearing, a cart of scavenged food—and each other.

It's time for my first book review for the blog and I've picked a heavy one. Figuratively speaking of course; it's actually quite a short read. The Road has been on my TBR list for years and it feels so rewarding to have finally gotten a chance to read it, as terrifying and disturbing as it was.

The Road takes place in a post-apocalyptic future in which everything is covered in ash from some event that McCarthy does not go into too many details of, and where there are few survivors. Of these survivors are the father and the boy (who have no names) who are travelling west across the country always looking for food, always following the road. Along the way, they run into some "bad" people who would do anything to survive, even becoming cannibals.

The reader spends the entire book with the father and the son, "each the other's world entire," and their immense love for each other that keeps them moving and surviving in a future of complete devastation. So moving. Especially the boy with his earnest, never failing goodness and the father's tenderness with the boy.

The ending was so beautiful and heart-wrenching. A book hasn't evoked such a powerful emotional reaction out of me in a while. I couldn't recommend The Road more! I haven't read a Cormac McCarthy book before but I'm sure as heck looking into it now.


  1. I loved this book! Your review is great and really touches on the importance of this book and the relationship between the father and son.

    You're right, it is a quick read. When I read it, I kept telling myself I'd put the book down and go to sleep just as soon as I finished the chapter. It was waaaay past my bedtime by the time I realized the book didn't have chapters, but at that point I was so close to finishing I just kept reading. :P

    Of McCarthy's books, I've read this and No Country for Old Men. I liked both, but I enjoyed The Road more. In a way, they're almost like companion novels, with The Road showing the optimistic side of humanity and NCfOM, well, showing the other side.

    Good luck with your blog! I just started one too. I love your blog name. :)

  2. Interesting about No Country for Old Men being like a companion novel. I definitely would like to read it. Thanks for commenting!

  3. A coworker recommended this book to me. She swore it was great, I've just never got around to reading it. After reading your review, I definitely have a bit more motivation. Thanks! :-)

  4. Wow! I never actually knew what this book was about -- but it sounds fascinating! And powerful! I'm definitely checking it out now!

  5. Warning: it's VERY disturbing.

  6. I just had to come check out your first review Aylee, especially since it was a Cormac McCarthy novel.

    His books are always a hit or miss with me. I loved All the Pretty Horses, but I struggled with Blood Meridian. Still, I've also had The Road on my TBR forever so I will read it.. someday.

  7. Aw, thanks for coming :) All of his books are on my TBR. I will also get to them... someday.