“The Road.”

I am really scared right now because I am reading Cormac McCarthy’s outstanding novel, “The Road.” It’s a vision of the future, uncompromising and bleak. Basically, civilization has been blotted out, and there are roving groups of thugs with sack cloths and swords. The two heroes of the book are a young man and his father. They are on the run. Dead trees line the road. Trash and shrunken heads are everywhere. There are no institutions that have survived the unnamed cataclysm in this book, with the lone exception of Starbucks, which somehow thrives. So anyways, these roving bands of thugs, all hopped up on coffee and pastries, are going around laying waste to cities and forests. Great book, except for the many product placements (Pennzoil, Chuck E. Cheese, Amoco, Twizzlers, etc.) which I found discouraging. I’m also reading a great book called “On Chesil Beach” by Ian McKewan. Basically it’s about this neurotic British couple who are trapped, for 48 hours, in a washroom in the back of a Peet’s Coffee in Oakland while on their honeymoon. McKewan writes with tremendous subtlety about class distinction, sexuality and deferred dreams, plus he describes the Peet’s bathroom extremely well. (you really feel like you’re stuck in there with them.)


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