The Road by Cormac McCarthy

The Road
Cormac McCarthy
(Movie Tie-In Edition)
(Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group: 2009)

READ: January - February 2009

My first mistake was trying to read this whilst on vacation in Mexico. While it worked well as a book to read on the flight down (indeed, I picked it up in a bookstore only a day or two prior to our departure), the post-apocalyptic desolation of the book did not ring true while on a lush, sunny beach. However, post-vacation, I was able to return to this book.

I had a few friends who had read it and sung its praises, one of the reasons I picked it up. They talked about the nightmarish quality of the book and of the engrossing nature of its writing. I thought the book was good and well-written; however, I wasn't sure why it was so lauded. One of the book's qualities, I think, was in how it keeps feeling like something is about to happen, yet nothing (almost ever) does. The post-apocalyptic world isn't full of monsters and excitement; it is full of day after day spent on the move, trying to find somewhere with enough food to sustain yourself. That was well-done by McCarthy. Maybe it is because I have watched Randal play Fallout 3 too much; maybe I have just spent too much time thinking, reading, or watching things about the apocalypse, but I didn't find McCarthy's vision of the post-apocalyptic world particularly frightening. Yeah, it's quiet, and scary, and hard to find food, and not everyone is out there to help you. It's the post-apocalypse.

2010 Booklist

  1. The Road by Cormac McCarthy
  2. Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture by Ellen Ruppel Shell
  3. The Meaning of Everything by Simon Winchester
  4. World History for Dummies by Peter Haugen (unfinished)
  5. Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia Of Crafts
  6. Kneadlessly Simple: Fabulous, Fuss-Free, No-Knead Breads by Nancy Baggett
  7. Knitting for Babies: Blankets, Booties, Bibs & More
  8. The Housekeeper and The Professor by Yoko Ogawa
  9. The Theory and Practice of Online Learning, 2nd ed., edited by Terry Anderson (unfinished)
  10. Complete Contemporary Craft: Textiles
  11. The Rapture by Liz Jensen
  12. The Music Room by William Fiennes
  13. Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia Of Sewing And Fabric Crafts
  14. Law School 2.0: Legal Education for a Digital Age by David I.C. Thomson
  15. Life Inc.: How The World Became A Corporation And How To Take It Back by Douglas Rushkoff
  16. The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead by Max Brooks
  17. Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror and the Macabre by H.P. Lovecraft
  18. Life Ascending: The Ten Great Inventions of Evolution by Nick Lane (unfinished)
  19. In Defence of Food: An Eater's Manifesto by Michael Pollan
  20. Salt: A World History by Mark Kurlansky
  21. The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid by Bill Bryson
  22. Ringworld by Larry Niven
  23. The Secret Life of War: Journeys Through Modern Conflict by Peter Beaumont
  24. One-Skein Wonders: 101 Yarn-shop Favorites From Coast To Coast by Judith Durant
  25. Stitch & Bitch Nation by Debbie Stoller
  26. The Golden Compass (audiobook) by Philip Pullman
  27. I.O.U.: Why Everyone Owes Everyone and No One Can Pay by John Lanchester
  28. Parisians: An Adventure History of Paris by Graham Robb (unfinished)
  29. Bags In Bloom by Susan Cariello
  30. A Reading Diary: A Passionate Reader's Reflections On A Year Of Books by Alberto Manguel
  31. Cairo: The City Victorious by Max Rodenbeck
  32. A Short Course in Digital Photography by Barbara London (unfinished)
  33. Under the Skin by Michael Faber
  34. Four Fish: The Future of the Last Wild Food by Paul Greenberg (unfinished)
  35. Killing the Shamen by Thomas Fiddler (unfinished)
  36. The Passage by Justin Cronin