A father and his son walk alone through burned America. Nothing moves in the ravaged landscape save the ash on the wind. It is cold enough to crack stones, and when the snow falls it is gray. The sky is dark. Their destination is the coast, although they don't know what, if anything, awaits them there.
You should read this book because it is exactly what a book about our future ought to be.
Hypnotic and haunting, relentlessly dark, this is a novel to read in late-night solitude. Though the focus never leaves the two travelers, they carry our humanity, and we can't help but feel the world hangs in the balance of their hopeless quest. A masterpiece.
Kirkus Reviews (starred)
Even within the author's extraordinary body of work, this stands as a radical achievement, a novel that demands to be read and reread.
Publishers Weekly (starred)
[A] postapocalyptic tour de force...
Janet Maslin, New York Times
Trenchant and terrifying...fueled by a universal nightmare... illuminated by extraordinary tenderness...McCarthy gives voice to the unspeakable... His use of language is as exultant as his imaginings are hellish...This is art that both frightens and inspires.
The New Yorker
The horrors here are extreme but McCarthy's prose retainsits ability to seduce and there are nods to the gentler aspects of the human spirit.
Dennis LeHane, Amazon.com
McCarthy may have just set to paper the definitive vision of the world after nuclear war
This stands as a radical achievement...a novel that demands to be read and reread... A novel of horrific beauty...The relationship between father and son has a sweetness that represents all that's good in a universe where conventional notions of good and evil have been extinguished.
O, The Oprah Magazine
Yet for all this, The Road provides the mesmerized reader with exhilaration, even joy. What makes the novel so profoundly affecting is the intensity of McCarthy's imaginative immersion: he sees the most extraordinary detail... The Road deserves to last. It is an overwhelming achievement
Tom Chiarella, Esquire
It is exactly what a book about our future ought to be
It conjurs a compelling and memorable dread
Keir Graff, Booklist
A masterpiece...hypnotic and haunting
Malcolm Jones, Newsweek
One measure of a good writer is the ability to surprise. Terse, unsentimental, bleak-McCarthy's readers have been down that road before. But who would ever have thought you'd call him touching?
Wrenchingly elegiac... Single plot twists chill the blood.