Ex Libris Kirkland

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First Written 2007
Genre Fiction
Origin US
Publisher Vintage
ISBN-10 9780307387899
ISBN-13 978-0307387899
My Copy library
First Read March 21, 2011

The Road



I've never read McCarthy, and I was shocked at how good this was. It is rich, and amazing, and meant to be savored. You can read about the plot elsewhere, but I highly recommend it if you can stomach the book.

It's not a horror novel, but it is full of horrible things - but they seem like they're needed. McCarthy really includes only the minimum necessary horribleness to get you to really feel the terror and loneliness of the post-apocalyptic world. However, it's the man's feelings for the boy and his desperation that were really difficult to get through for me.

Noted on March 22, 2011

He remembered waking once on such a night to the clatter of crabs in the pan where he’d left steakbones from the night before. Faint deep coals of the driftwood fire pulsing in the onshore wind. Lying under such a myriad of stars. The sea’s black horizon. He rose and walked out and stood barefoot in the sand and watched the pale surf appear all down the shore and roll and crash and darken again. When he went back to the fire he knelt and smoothed her hair as she slept and he said if he were God he would have made the world just so and no different.

Quoted on March 22, 2011

Standing at the edge of a winter field among rough men. The boy's age. A little older. Watching while they opened up the rocky hillside ground with pick and mattock and brought to light a great bolus of serpents perhaps a hundred in number. Collected there for a common warmth. The dull tubes of them beginning to move sluggishly in the cold hard light. Like the bowels of some great beast exposed to the day. The men poured gasoline on them and burned them alive, having no remedy for evil but only for the image of it as they conceived it to be.

Quoted on March 22, 2011

By then all stores of food had given out and murder was everywhere upon the land. The world soon to be largely populated by men who would eat your children in front of your eyes and the cities themselves held by cores of blackened looters who tunneled among the ruins and crawled from the rubble white of tooth and eye carrying charred and anonymous tins of food in nylon nets like shoppers in the commissaries of hell. The soft black talc blew through the streets like squid ink uncoiling along a sea floor and the cold crept down and the dark came early and the scavengers passing down the steep canyons with their torches trod silky holes in the drifted ash that closed behind them silently as eyes. Out on the roads the pilgrims sank down and fell over and died and the bleak and shrouded earth went trundling past the sun and returned again as trackless and as unremarked as the path of any nameless sisterworld in the ancient dark beyond.

Quoted on March 22, 2011


Ex Libris Kirkland is a super-self-absorbed reading journal made by Matt Kirkland. Copyright © 2001 - .
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