Week 2 : The Road by Cormac McCarthy
Nothing prepared me for the visceral and absolutely depressing dystopian universe that Cormac McCarthy creates in The Road. This novel set in a post apocalyptic world, tell the bleak tale of a father and son who journey across the country in search of a better tomorrow. We are taken on a dispiriting, yet riveting journey through a barren landscape telling of unthinkable death and destruction.
The entire story is told in short, dispersed bursts. The paragraphs never exceed half a page. The lack of quotation marks and punctuation, and the fact that we never discover the names of our protagonists, all culminate in creating a chilling universe devoid of all hope.
In this murky and disturbing setting, it is the father’s unconditional love for his son that shines like a small but consistent light, gently dispelling our feeling of impending doom. Interspersed in this story, are small moments of absolute hope that remind us that we can never really stray that far from humanity. The young boy’s innocence yet startling maturity make him an incredibly compelling companion for this otherwise melancholy journey.
Honestly, I struggled to get through the beginning of the book, but once I got to know the protagonists, I couldn’t stay away. The themes of death, destruction and an apocalypse are handled with such brutal honestly, yet it never loses sight of hope. Grab a copy of The Road today. It is a book you definitely do not want to miss!