Saturday, July 25, 2020

Appreciation …

… Cormac McCarthy, brutal but brilliant | Spectator USA. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

McCarthy has been faulted for the apparent relish with which he describes the cruelest actions: the casual shooting of the dancing bear in Blood Meridian, for instance. At other moments in his stories, casual suffering is merely poignant, like that of the small bird impaled alive and fluttering upon a cactus spine in Pretty Horses. Yet in his relentless insistence upon cruelty and violence, Cormac McCarthy is perhaps making a subtle aesthetic — even a moral — point. 
What about old-fashioned sensationalism? I’ve only read one of his novels, The Road, which I thought was awful: Slogging through best-sellerdom.


  1. Try sone more. The trilogy is a marvel. Sunset Limited a great introduction. I've read them all and lie in wait for one last. A master.

  2. Read the article. Too faint praise and misguided fault finding.

  3. Lots of people disagreed with that piece, which is fine. Book reviewing isn't a science. I continue to think the objections I raise regarding plausibility are sound. And I just found much of the writing off-putting. But that is matter of taste.