Book Review: The Road By Cormac McCarthy

[No spoilers]

Completely immersive book about a father and a son at the end of the world. Beautifully written. Probably the most scared I’ve ever been reading a book. The sort of book that costs you sleep because you can’t put it down, you have to know what happens next. Similar to Station Eleven in that way.

The book doesn’t have any chapters, just paragraphs. I think it’s the longest book I’ve ever read that I can say that about.

You never find out how the father and son ended up surviving whatever knocked out the rest of civilization or what ended civilization. You could delightfully spend hours doing a deep dive on theories about what happened and where the book takes place or just accept it and enjoy the book just as much. I’m not sure I buy the ending.

This booked impacted me in a way that is hard to put into words. The setting intensifies the father and son relationship in a way that will be familiar to most parents: overwhelming love for your child, intense fear of what could happen to them, anxiety over your ultimate powerlessness to protect them in the face of events. In this way, The Road is a metaphor for the responsibility of being a parent in its most concentrated form. Must read unless apocalyptic fiction isn’t your thing (and even then, give it a chance).

operating a bit outside the lines

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