Chabon Reviews McCarthy’s The Road

The New York Review of Books recently published an article by Michael Chabon analyzing Cormac McCarthy’s novel The Road. Here’s a sample (and possibly a sentence that rivals Melville in length):

All the elements of a science fiction novel of the post-apocalypse are present or at least hinted at, then, in The Road: the urgent naturalism of McCarthy’s description of torched woodland, desiccated human remains, decaying structures, human and natural violence; the ambivalence toward technology embodied in the destructive-redemptive role of fire; the faint inventive echoes of works like Roger Zelazny’s Damnation Alley and the Mad Max movies in McCarthy’s “bloodcults,” roving gangs of tattooed barbarian cannibals driven by lust and hunger and surviving bits of diesel-powered machinery; and the strong invitation to pardon the exercise as a fable extended by the namelessness of characters and locales, by the vague nature of the disaster that has befallen the world, by the presence of at least one semi-allegorical character and the usual, inevitable (in McCarthy’s work generally and the genre as a whole) speculation on the presence or absence of God.

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