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message 1: by Jonas (new)

Jonas Pihl | 64 comments Mod
This thread is for the people who have finished the book, so there will be spoilers for the entire book here!

Be sure to check out the thread once in a while during March, as we read the book. Don't hesitate to share your opinions - likes and dislikes - and any questions or discussions about the book you might have.


message 2: by Christopher (new)

Christopher (nomadpenguin) | 14 comments The delineation between “good guys” and “bad guys” seems to be largely based on of property rights. Killing is not seen as inherently “bad”; the man kills two people in the novel with almost no hesitation. Instead, what is seen as despicable is the ownership of other humans (as food or as slaves), and the violation of property rights (the man assures people he meets that he is not a robber). Because of this distinction, the boy is especially concerned about whether their foraging constitutes theft; the pair are constantly faced with the fact that in a productionless world, all property ownership is necessarily appropriative. The man resolves this tension by asserting that private property becomes common property upon death; he reassures the boy that they are only taking resources from people who have already died. However, the man seems to be inconsistent in his ideas about the ownership of resources after death. By his conception of property rights, his belongings should become common property upon his death, but instead he passes on his property to his son and instructs him to “keep the gun with you at all times”. Furthermore, the entire concept of property relations in a world without law or politics seems problematic to say the least.

The boy seems to recognize these contradictions and pushes back against his father’s ideas. Besides questioning the morality of acquiring the property of the dead, he also wishes to share resources with almost everyone they meet on the road, suggesting that he views all property as common property. So what does it mean when the boy continues to “carry the fire”, perpetuating “goodness” in the world? It seems that his ideas about “the fire” and “goodness” are very different than his father’s.


message 3: by Ben (new)

Ben | 22 comments This book was excellent; not a fun story but a terrific experience. I could not put it down. I constantly felt compelled to continue the journey, despite all signs pointing to the man and boy joining the scores of nameless dead they passed on the way. The ending was both true to the story and also justified the feigned hope that the man displayed throughout the story about finding more "good people."

I found it fascinating just how many elements of the writing bring the experience of the characters to life for the reader. The lack of chapter breaks cause all of the text run together, making it hard to distinguish one day from another. The lack of quotation marks blurs the lines between thoughts and speech. The lack of names for the characters and locations gives the reader a desolate and dehumanized feeling, similar to what was felt by the man and boy on the road.

I can't wait to see more feedback from the other readers - I suspect that the bleakness will be a hurdle for many.


message 4: by N.M. (new)

N.M. (nmbrome) | 57 comments Mod
I've been conflicted on whether or not I enjoyed this book, but I think I did. It wasn't a book designed to entertain, which I found hard to get past, but the story was phenomenal, and I haven't been able to stop thinking about it. The prose wasn't traditional in the slightest, but it was extremely compelling and added to the bleakness and hopelessness of the novel. I did find it hard to relate to the character because honestly, I would have given up long before he did. How did you guys feel about that? Would you have kept persevering?


message 5: by N.M. (new)

N.M. (nmbrome) | 57 comments Mod
Ben wrote: "This book was excellent; not a fun story but a terrific experience. I could not put it down. I constantly felt compelled to continue the journey, despite all signs pointing to the man and boy joini..."

I saw some negative comments about the dialogue but I thought it worked well for the story. It was no frills, which makes sense considering the circumstances.


message 6: by Jonas (new)

Jonas Pihl | 64 comments Mod
It’s one of my favourite books, because the story is amazing and it is a very atmospheric book. The writing style, and dialogue, definitely helps show how bleak and hopeless it all is. There’s nothing added anywhere, no quotations marks or anything, you just get what you need and that’s it. I found that very interesting, though it wouldn’t work in very many books.

I definitely had given up way earlier, but I guess what kept the man going was his son. Still though, I had probably just stayed in the bunker and lived out my days happy there.


message 7: by Alexander (new)

Alexander Beal (bookman714) | 2 comments It's been a little while since I read it, but the overall vibe and atmosphere of the book definitely stuck with me. As readers we are dropped into this mysterious post-apocalyptic world and not really given a full explanation as to why this world is the way it is. I like how it ended with at least a little glimmer of hope, as opposed to some of McCarthy's other books (looking at you Blood Meridian). Ultimately I enjoyed this book, and can see why it won the Pulitzer.


message 8: by Ben (new)

Ben | 22 comments Naomi wrote: "...I did find it hard to relate to the character because honestly, I would have given up long before he did. How did you guys feel about that? Would you have kept persevering?"

I feel like I would have played the same mind games as the main character. Put on a brave face and offer as much hope as possible to the boy, while inwardly knowing (fearing) that I am not any better than all of the corpses littering he road.


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