Other Free Encyclopedias » Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern Fiction » Books & Authors: Award-Winning Fiction (Mc-Pa)

McCarthy, Cormac

book west united savage

(US, 1933– )

Cormac McCarthy did not achieve fame until the publication of his sixth novel, All the Pretty Horses (1992), but when it came attention turned to its predecessor, Blood Meridian, or the Evening Redness in the West (1985). This book is set in the south-west borderland between the United States and Mexico, and follows the experiences of the (unnamed) kid, as he gets involved with a gang of mercenaries called the Glantons, and meets one of the most menacing figures in modern literature, Judge Holden, a huge, pale, manic individual who seems to know every aspect of human culture and to conduct a single-handed and satanic campaign to destroy it all. This is a savage book, full of rape and pillage, with more scalpings described in more detail—the Indians are just as savage as the whites—than (surely) in any other book. It is also beautifully written, a great poetic exploration of nature and the myth of the West.

Ken Kesey, Flannery O'Connor.


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