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» One Touch Football - Archive » Books » Is this the best book of the last 50 years? (Page 1)

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Author Topic: Is this the best book of the last 50 years?
Pants
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Cormac McCarthy's 'The Road'.

He's the real deal and this is mind-blowingly awesome. I honestly can't think of any other book of the last half century that's knocked me for six in the way that this has. Coetzee's 'Disgrace' comes close, but this is better. Beautiful. Devastating. Gripping. And, if you have kid/s, it's absolutely fucking heart-breaking (I'm sure it's a headfuck if you're not a parent, too, but the set-up really got to me and challenged everything I know/am learning as a father). I was literally bawling my eyes out throughout most of the second half of the book.

(Oh, and, like Coetzee's stuff, it's short. You can read it in an afternoon.)

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Dr. Hofzinser
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I'm going book-shopping later this week. I might have to buy this if it's that good.
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Pants
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Do it, Hof. Honestly, it's one of those novels that stays with you for weeks and changes the way you look at the world. I can't recommend it highly enough.
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Crusoe
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Well, that's on my Amazon list now too.
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Inca
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This is the post-apocalyptic one, right?

I haven't read any of his stuff, but if I like the Coen Bros.' No Country for Old Men, maybe I'll get into him.

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mafu
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pants - if it's better than blood meridian then he might have written the best 2. i pretty much insist you try that too, for most of the same reasons you give in your opening post. except it is longer, but that's no bad thing.

i haven't read the road - i was starting to think he was going off the boil - but i will probably hunt it down now

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Rory Bunk
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I thought it was excellent too, enjoyable as far as something so harrowing and lacking in hope can be.

I agree with Pants on how much it affects you when you have children - it makes you think about how much you love and want to protect them. It also depressingly illustrated to me the fact that without society, manually non-practical people like myself would be utterly useless at providing for their children, in even the very basics.

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My name is Mumpo
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I don't want to weird anyone out, but I have this dream sometimes, well, more like a nightmare, but not a nightmare that happens when I'm asleep, more a nightmarish train of thought... I'm the sole survivor of an apocalyptic holocaust and one day, amongst the ruins of our civilisation , I find my dad, but all wizened and decrepit. He jumps on my back and tries to eat me, so I have to kill him.

Which is a shame, because he's really nice.

Is the book anything like that?

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Rory Bunk
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You really should have put spoiler alerts all
over that, Major.

[ 13.11.2007, 00:02: Message edited by: Rory Bunk ]

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Pants
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Cheers mafu - I'll definitely read 'Blood Meridian'.
Rory - the thought about being non-practical crossed my mind, too. I'd be absolutely fucked in a nuclear winter.

***SORT OF VERY MILD SPOILER***
Major Eazy, seriously, that's quite close to the plot. Thankfully, the dad doesn't try to eat the son, but there are cannibals are roaming all over the place - both organised ones who've rounded up loads of people to eat and opportunist ones who'll kill and eat anyone they come across. It's totally fucked up.

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Billy Casper
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I've got nothing to add to this thread other than yes, it is a fantastic book and no, I can't get it out of my head either.
Mrs C started reading it last night, but had to stop after about sixty pages because she found it too upsetting

A big thanks to Pants for recommending both this and Cloud Atlas. Two incredible books I would probably not have read otherwise.

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Lardinho
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I read it on Sunday. What a fantastic book. Very dark but very upbeat too, really.

**SPOILERY THING**
I love the fact that the child, being more naive, is so much more optimistic and friendly and open than the man, and the implication that becoming cynical and bordering on nasty is a symptom of experience rather than a symptom of being human

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Pants
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Cheers Billy (who did you used to be, by the way?). No sweat. Those two are the kind of books that you read and want to run out into the street urging everyone else in the world to read them, too.

quote:
Mrs C started reading it last night, but had to stop after about sixty pages because she found it too upsetting
Yeah, my missus couldn't read it either. She was absolutely bawling her eyes out over it. I dread to think what state she'd have been in if she'd reached the last third.

**NOT THAT MUCH OF A SPOILER BUT JUST IN CASE**

quote:
I love the fact that the child, being more naive, is so much more optimistic and friendly and open than the man, and the implication that becoming cynical and bordering on nasty is a symptom of experience rather than a symptom of being human
That's an interesting take on it, Lard. I thought that was one of the most moving things about it: the way the kid wanted to help everyone and the man (mostly) wouldn't let him. I didn't think the man was nasty - just utterly hardened. The book forces you to keep asking yourself what you'd do in these situations and I'm ashamed to say I kept thinking, the man's right - move on - don't look back - don't help - don't get involved.
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Purves Grundy
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I thought this was going to be a thread about Up and Coming by Molly Parkin.
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Dr. Hofzinser
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Wow. I just have to say thank you thank you thank you to Pants for introducing me to a book that I wouldn't otherwise have read but which is the most astonishing, heartbreaking and, as said above, beautiful book I have read in, well, possibly ever.

So brutal and bleak and harrowing, yet also so poignant and touching - and uplifting, even - and utterly, utterly compelling.

My head was all over the place when I finished it, and I'll be thinking about it for quite some time.

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