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on February 13, 2017
Could not put this book down. It brings you to the darkest places one goes to survive. The pace of the book is brilliant and the plot tugs at your heart long after you finish the last page. Many scenes in the book will sear into your memory.
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on September 22, 2012
Devastating and profound. The story itself is unutterably sad yet beautifully written. The book charts a father and son's journey as they struggle to survive in a post-apocalyptic world, their survival as tenuous as a flame flickering in the wind. I can't recall a post-apocalyptic world rendered with such vividness- at once crushingly sad and cruel but illuminated by a beautiful poetic style that is as pitiless as it is moving. The spare, lucid writing cleaves to the very core of its spectral, imagined world, at times so impressionistic and painterly you can almost see the brush strokes, yet weighted with the crushing specificity of truth. At the heart of it all is a father's undying love for his son and this is what keeps us reading. We are with them on their journey and each moment of desperation and triumph becomes our own. It is not an easy book to read but it is a deeply moving and riveting one, and highly recommended. Strangely enough, sad as it is, it's not a completely depressing book either. The father's love for his son not only shelters him but provides a fragile buffer for us from the story's relentless darkness. The story also functions as a kind of material and spiritual exile from our own world so that we return to it with a renewed appreciation for its beauty and bounty. In that sense there is illumination rather than just desolation.
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on March 9, 2017
Great book. Compelling read albeit very depressing. Really gives a glimpse on human depravity.

Probably one of my favourites of all time. Worth the read!
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on March 9, 2017
Very good Price.
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on February 28, 2016
Looked forward to getting back to it every nite
Quick interesting read
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on March 29, 2007
Cormac Mccarthy's The Road is a dark, post apocalyptic journey through the remnants of the world as we know it, with the faintest flicker of hope at the end.

Destroyed by some never quite explained catastrophe, the Earth has become nearly inhospitable to life. A thick ash smothers everything and hangs in the sky, making a cold, quiet moonscape where things had once been green and alive. Through this nightmare world travels bands of desperate survivors, including an unnamed man and his son. The father's plan is to travel south to warmth and the ocean, where he hopes to find their salvation. Along the way they are confronted by cannibals, thugs and others as adrift as they are, a Darwinian struggle reminiscent to some degree of the lost boys in The Lord of the Flies, but far more sinister and disturbing. In particular, the image of the captives of the cannibals- who are being eaten bit by bit, shrinking grotesquely but kept alive so their flesh remains fresh- is a vision of Hell right out of Hieronymus Bosch's The Garden of Earthly Delights. Calling themselves "the good guys," the father and son still carry a gun- with two bullets- to end their lives if needed rather than suffer a crueler fate. The father also struggles with the ethical dilemma of having to "unteach" his son about compassion and empathy, afraid that the boy- who wants to help those equally in need- will only die in the attempt. This "every man for himself" situation is in stark contrast to everything the father believes, and how the boy has been raised. It's this struggle to hang on to the noble aspects of humanity while surrounded by the worse that makes the novel insightful, haunting, and a riveting read.

Mark Wakely, author of An Audience for Einstein
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on December 14, 2007
I am not a Cormac McCarthy fan. I tried reading All The Pretty Horses several times but the downer neo-Hemingway style put me off and I could not sustain interest. Then last Christmas a friend in Europe sent me The Road as a gift. I had heard the reviews and was not prepared to read such a dark, bleak novel. Or not right away. But a few days ago I picked it up and read it in one, four hour sitting. I felt that if I stopped reading this horrific story, I would not have the courage to go back to it.
In this novel, McCarthy's simple writing style works. The planet is reduced to a cold, burnt cinder where the sun rarely shines because of a cloud cover of soot. Nothing of the world we know functions anymore and those humans who still live have only one goal: survival. Like the depressing gray days, McCarthy's language is basic and merges narrative with dialogue. Sometimes he blends words, like ruststained or diningroom or waterbuckled which oddly reflects the roadway that had been melted with corpses of refugees. Not using any quotation marks, or chapter breaks, or character names, the writing is grim and relentless. Yet it draws the reader into an incinerated landscape of cannibals and death where no birds sing or fish swim.
The story follows a nameless father and young son as they make their way south along deserted roads in what was once the United States. The boy was born after the disaster so only knows this bleak world. It is late autumn and grey snow falls along their trek to the gulf of Mexico. They push an old shopping cart with their scavenged food and tarps and try to avoid marauding body hunters. Both of them are emaciated and sick and they often do not eat for days. The only thing sustaining them is their love, their belief that they are the "good guys", and that things will be better once they reach the coast. Their journey is an open nightmare.
One reviewer has commented that The Road would have worked better as a long short story. I understand this viewpoint. But I am glad that McCarthy wrote it as a novel because it will reach a wider audience. I only pray that it will never be made into a film. This black jewel should only be read.
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on August 17, 2007
I scarcely know where to begin to comment on this book. It is powerful and demanding of your emotions. It is beautiful and poetic in it's writing style. Many other reviewers have summarized the plot so there's no need to reiterate. The way in which the tale is told however; is so moving that it actually caused me physical pain due to anxiety, empathy, anticipation.

I'm a new mother, my son having just turned one, and I suspect that the agony of this novel was enhanced by this. If you are a parent it is impossible not to envision the plight of the main characters in your own family context. It was gripping. I wanted to stop reading because I felt I didn't want to know what would happen to "the boy" and "the man" but I had to keep at it.

Not being a fan of Oprah, I often avoid her book club picks...but in this case, I'm glad I didn't and I encourage other Oprah-skeptics to follow suit.
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon February 1, 2017
The Road by Cormac McCarthy is a book that you are either going to love or to hate. I listened to it on audible not knowing a thing about the author, reviews or even the genre. Now a year later, while writing this review,I find that the ‘Goodreads’ rating is 3.95 stars gleaned from 534,591 votes and has 37,662 Reviews. In Audible The Road is rated a 4.10 star gleaned from 10,051 ratings.

This book is a 6 ½ hour ordeal to listen to. McCarthy’s vision of the post apocalyptic world is disturbingly believable. There is no clear reason for the catastrophe other than that fire has ravaged the land and almost everything is gone - people, animals, vegetation… Even the sun is blocked out by smoke and ash and in this world the man and his son walk through a country that is devoid of everything we are familiar with. There is no plot. It is just a story of a father who loves his son, and together they just walk, and walk and walk…

McCarthy’s world is the most frightening and chilling ever envisioned. “Often, it's the things he doesn't say, or only hints at, that make your imagination run riot and leave you thinking long afterward. It's an extremely engrossing listen, with a slow, deliberate style”. (David- Halifax, NS - audible review 2010)

Some reviewers were unhappy with the lack of information like why did the apocalypse happen, what exactly did happen, why were the conversations between father and son so clipped… I found all of that inconsequential. All I see is a man with his child walking… Where to is not important, though the cold temperatures and lack of warmth, clothes...makes me think it is just for warmth. Besides, when there is nothing to go to what difference does the direction make. One just moves away from danger and hopes to find food. The Clipped speech is also a complaint. I find that the man and child are exhausted, have walked forever and not only is there is no energy left to speak, the bleakness, death, hunger and lack of future leaves very little to even say.

People have complained about the writing. “There are very few apostrophe's, no commas, no quotation marks. The font is dull. The paragraphs carry extra spacing. The words are clipped.”( Nick 2007 Goodreads) Because I listened to the Audio, none of this applied. In the stark world McCarthy crafted I feel that the spelling, punctuation, even the words themselves no longer have any importance.

“This is a superbly-produced audiobook. Tom Stechschulte has the perfect voice for the novel: low, growly and hard-bitten; when he delivers the protagonist's lines you can believe that you're listening to a man who's walked across the wilderness for years, and he balances despair and hope in the man's voice to moving effect. But Stechschulte is also able to differentiate the characters, sounding genuinely young and innocent when performing the boy. McCarthy's often portentous style could have sounded artificial and preachy if done badly, but Stechschulte speaks every word with absolute conviction. It's a powerful acting performance by a true craftsman”. (David- Halifax, NS - audible review 2010).

Even if you hate this book, there are moments and happenings that will stay with you forever. I will not see the movie as their rendition will blur the feelings, visions, smells, … that this mesmerizing book has gifted me.

I really enjoy reading and writing reviews and it has become a pleasurable hobby for me. Like you, I depend on your reviews to assist me in my purchasing decisions. I take a lot of time and make a real effort to write informative, honest, and descriptive reviews.

You have made my day if you have found mine of any assistance to you. Enjoy!!!
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on August 22, 2013
The RoadThe handful of poor reviews seemed to miss the point. The repetitive plot points and desolate wasteland illustrate optimism and the endearing force of human love, not a depressing world where man is monster. Actually, Cormac dances the line between both views, and it's not a new theme: humanity is both godly and demonic, both divine and absurd. This desolate landscape is utterly beautiful in its ugliness, and so are the people. As author, Cormac brilliantly combines gritty reality with a fantasy vision that is clearly meant to be no more than an apocalyptic metaphor--not a thrill ride. This is a short, gripping read that will haunt you and you won't forget it. The nameless father and "the boy" offer the ultimate symbolism in the end. To me, the "man" is all of men and the "boy" represents "innocence." These aren't so much people, as ideolograms. Yet, the are real for all that, too. You will read this in one sitting, and won't stop for lunch or dinner. It will not make a good movie, in spite of wondrous visuals, simply because it's not meant to be a movie, but as literature this is art. Yes, if you want thrills and chills, go elsewhere, perhaps to Stephen King's classic THE STAND, but for haunting artistry, don't miss THE ROAD. P.S. Although the lack of "dialogue punctuation" and apostrophes bothered me a little initially, I quickly became use to this style. With a cast of virtually two (there are more than two characters, but only two that really matter), it was fine, almost like reading a play or movie script. The over use of the dialogue "Okay" was also initially annoying, but quickly became a stylism, too. Clearly, that could be the way two people--who have only each other for company, year after year-- might learn to communicate. And Cormac can do it because he's a master. But if I could change one thing, I would be tempted to add "quotations."
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