Title: The Road
Author: Cormac McCarthy
Published: Picador, 2009
Synopsis: 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
Star parts: I bought this book because it was recommended to me by three people. Two of them tried to tell me about the book without telling me too much, but explained that they had been profoundly moved by the book.
The story unfolds in a post apocalyptic world. I think one of the things that was so horrifying in the book is that it was all so plausible. Nothing rang false, the sights McCarthy described, the sounds, the smells, it just all seemed so plausible. The boy is experiencing a world lacking in innocence and it makes the readers heart bleed. All the boy and the father have is each other, they are each others hope, they are what makes it bearable to keep reading.
The road is horrific while not being a horror book. It's a beautiful and tender love story between father and son. The descriptions are haunting and throughout it all there is the grey ash that covers everything. It is a moving book for many reasons, not just because I wept all through the final pages and had to go back and read it. The final paragraph is hauntingly beautiful, but after having read the book to me it was actually a chilling lesson.
Black clouds: It's not bedtime reading, which is unfortunately when I do the bulk of my reading. Still that's a personal gripe and thankfully a loooong drive to Italy provided me with all the time I needed to finish the book.
Do I recommend it: Totally, it will make your heart break and sing at the same time.