#4 The Road by Cormac McCarthy

15 01 2008

While I was on my trip to Florida, I finished reading The Road by Cormac McCarthy. I was unable to get into the book when I first started reading it, so I made it my only available plane reading from Peoria to Sanford/Orlando. This was an effective measure.

I am not generally a fan of science fiction, books that occur in the future, or books that are set around the aftermath of a fictional natural disaster. But, as I consider myself somewhat of a literati, I figured I couldn’t go wrong reading a Pulitzer Prize winning novel endorsed by Oprah herself (which is the bigger honor?).

Although I didn’t really enjoy the act of reading this book, I did like the book. It had the similar effect on me of Brave New World and Handmaid’s Tale, resounding in my thoughts after the reading was complete.

Many questions are brought to light with the reading of this book, including:

  • How much is too much to bear? When do you give up living?
  • Could I kill my own child in order to prevent them from suffering immensely in this life?

In some ways this book reminded me of The Stand by Stephen King (which is on my list of favorite books). It is the end of the world, good vs. bad – which one will triumph? It is a lot to think about. Every beginning has an ending. Hopefully we will not have to suffer like the protagonist in The Road.

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2 responses

17 01 2008
Jennifer

Laura,
Hmmm… Now that I’ve read your review I don’t know if I could read the book. I think it might be too depressing. (I can handle most depressing books, but when it deals with kids, and parenting issues a la “Sophie’s Choice” I get really upset).
Jennifer

30 01 2008
Dean Rader

I’m fascinated that The Road reminded you of Brave New World and The Handmaid’s Tale—both of which are sort of sci-fi/big brother-y.

What connects all three is a lack of control and a search for meaning and purpose in a world seemingly devoid of both.

I actually write about why The Road and the film, No Country for Old Men, are popular right now in my post yesterday. If interested, you can check it out here:
http://weeklyrader.blogspot.com/2008/01/extolling-mccarthy.html

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