Sunday, 4 September 2011

The Road (Cormac McCarthy)

Title: The Road
Author: Cormac McCarthy
Publisher: Picador
Publication Date: 2006 
Pages: 307
Source: Book club borrowed
Genre: Literary Fiction
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Wow, I spent part of my weekend reading this book and man it made me feel depressed. The Road is the story of a man and his son (we never learn their names) trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. We also never learn how or why the world has turned to ashes nor the location of the story and the book is almost a series of snapshots into this bleak world so we know very little about the characters themselves.

It was a short read which I am eternally grateful for as I fear I may not have been able to shake this depressive feeling if it had been much longer.

In that respect, I imagine the book accomplished its task; providing a bleak and troubled world where humanity may have long since disappeared. And don't get me wrong, I can see how the incredibly poetic and sparse prose has put this book in the top of many must read book lists but it simply wasn't for me. I am a varied reader and don't easily get spooked by difficult topics, however the hopelessness I extracted from this book means that I simply cannot put it in my 'like' pile.

Oh what a short and sweet review but you know what? It has to be as I simply can't get past the incredibly dire and depressive feeling from this book. I'm off to get a glass of wine. I feel like I really need one.

Confused?! Yep I am too. I just couldn't like it so it's thumbs down for me, but it is a unique and well written book so if you don't mind feeling depressed after reading a book then give it a go.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


  1. I agree-this one was depressing but I loved the writing. Have you seen the movie? I think watching it on screen made me feel worse than reading it did (maybe because my boy is about the same age as the one in the book). I cried at the end of the movie.

  2. No I haven't watched the movie and previously I had been tempted but now that I haved read the book there is no way I'm ever watching the movie. There is one scene in the book which I just can't get out of my head and if I saw it in movie format?! Well I think I'd have nightmares for a week!

  3. I'm glad you thought it a worthwhile read. Yes, it's depressing, indeed! I found the book really very good: the writing style especially, and also the ideas that the writer has put in the book, such as the world they're living in, and the things they encounter on the way.

    Well, at least you can say you've read it. :-)