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The Road (spoiler whole book)

I make this a new file.

I wonder what would you say is the whole point with this book? What did you gain from reading it? What will you remember? Which scene was strongest for you? And what theme was remarkable the way you perceived it and why?

ziki
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Paul_Hochman
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)



ziki wrote:
I make this a new file.

I wonder what would you say is the whole point with this book? What did you gain from reading it? What will you remember? Which scene was strongest for you? And what theme was remarkable the way you perceived it and why?

ziki




Thanks for posting this, ziki. Why not jump start this tread with your own feelings about the questions you posed?
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Fozzie
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)Point of Book



ziki wrote:
I wonder what would you say is the whole point with this book?

ziki



I think the book is about the nature of man. In this book, we see man at his worst and best. Worst - possibly creating the disaster; destroying what was left of civilization; cannibalism. Best - parent protecting child; Ely trusting his fellow man; people embracing the boy after his father's death.

In this book, I saw despair in the suicide of the man's wife, I saw perseverance to live in both the man and the boy, I saw hate and mistrust in groups attacking other survivors, I saw trust in Ely, I saw compassion and empathy in the boy, and I saw a community embracing the boy after his father's death.

Despite the horrible physical environment, most of what I saw in the book was positive qualities in the survivors of the tragedy. That is the message of hope --- the nature of man can remain good in an unthinkable environment.
Laura

Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)Point of Book



Fozzie wrote:... the nature of man can remain good in an unthinkable environment.



Thank you, you put this really well.

ziki
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job45
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)

I have read all Cormac McCarthy's books. Each time I read and reread them I am left with a profound appreciation of his use of language and his strong sense of moral justice. "The Road" was a departure from his usual Southwest locations, but his strong sense of right and wrong were very evident. His books make me think regarding choices in life that we sometimes are asked to make and many times are not popular. The setting for the book of a devastated world and the reason why, is I believe left to each reader to determine for themselves....whatever, the cause of the devastation I don't think it is central to the story. The collapse of society and the redetermination of what is right and wrong is what is central. Despite the horror of The Road the end gives a promise of new life.
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job45
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Re: The Road a lesson in human morality

I have read all Cormac McCarthy's books. Each time I read and reread them I am left with a profound appreciation of his use of language and his strong sense of moral justice. "The Road" was a departure from his usual Southwest locations, but his strong sense of right and wrong were very evident. His books make me think regarding choices in life that we sometimes are asked to make and many times are not popular. The setting for the book of a devastated world and the reason why, is I believe left to each reader to determine for themselves....whatever, the cause of the devastation I don't think it is central to the story. The collapse of society and the redetermination of what is right and wrong is what is central. Despite the horror of The Road the end gives a promise of new life.
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Re: The Road (to job)



job45 wrote:
I have read all Cormac McCarthy's books. Each time I read and reread them I am left with a profound appreciation of his use of language and his strong sense of moral justice. "The Road" was a departure from his usual Southwest locations, but his strong sense of right and wrong were very evident. His books make me think regarding choices in life that we sometimes are asked to make and many times are not popular. The setting for the book of a devastated world and the reason why, is I believe left to each reader to determine for themselves....whatever, the cause of the devastation I don't think it is central to the story. The collapse of society and the redetermination of what is right and wrong is what is central. Despite the horror of The Road the end gives a promise of new life.




Thank you.
Do you mean that only the outer consequences are of interest here? How can we determine what is right or wrong? On what do w ebase the morals, judgements? How could morals remedy something without assessing the cause of the trouble? Do you mean the story 'hangs in the air' as a flag just to allert us?

ziki
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)



PaulH wrote: Why not jump start this tread with your own feelings about the questions you posed?




Thanks for your prompt but doing that would shift my focus and that is not what I am after in this case. I am interested to hear what others think to begin with. :smileyhappy:

ziki
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Paul_Hochman
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)



ziki wrote:


PaulH wrote: Why not jump start this tread with your own feelings about the questions you posed?




Thanks for your prompt but doing that would shift my focus and that is not what I am after in this case. I am interested to hear what others think to begin with. :smileyhappy:

ziki




Okay. There's a lot of thoughts within these threads, so if you haven't already, you may want to start by reading through them for some great insights into the novel. If, at some point, you wish to offer up your own thoughts on the book, please feel free.
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PaulFrancis
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)

Ziki, These are good questions that provoke much thought. My short replies hardly do the questions justice, but maybe will spark more discussion.

I wonder what would you say is the whole point with this book?
McCarthy examines what remains important to each person in a devasted world. Makes us wonder how would I survive in this situation?

What did you gain from reading it?
An understanding (at a very emotional level) that our innate drive to survive can cause us to do incredible acts, both good and/or bad.

What will you remember?
The boys desire to find good in a deeply bleak world where living to the next day will surely mean facing a new horror.

Which scene was strongest for you?
After the father and son are "robbed" of their belongings on the beach, the father confronts the thief and demands that he even remove his clothing. This scene more than any other made me believe the author is making a connection to our own societies and how we treat our fellow humans. I felt the father follows the teaching of an eye for an eye and the boy holds to turning the other cheek.

And what theme was remarkable the way you perceived it and why?
1) That we must always be conscious of others intentions and how we are prepared to respond.

2) Even though the earth was unable to sustain human life, remarkably the boy was willing to save the human spirit.

Paul
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vivico1
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)


ziki wrote:
I make this a new file.

I wonder what would you say is the whole point with this book? What did you gain from reading it? What will you remember? Which scene was strongest for you? And what theme was remarkable the way you perceived it and why?

ziki


This book to me was about the journey of life, not the destination. There is throughout the book, the hope for the destination, the fire to carry on, the hope and we all hope that in the end, we will find that heavenly destination, we hope for it, pray for it and believe it is there for us and our loved ones. But even more than that in this book, is the journey we all take to get there. How we take our journeys, is often more important that where we are going. We dont always pay attention to our choices in our everyday hussle and bussle world or how we relate to others daily. Unfortunately, it often takes in human history, a tremendous tragedy, to bring out who we really are, hero or savage. Think of 9-11, or the Oklahoma City bombing. I have never seen so much outpouring of the best of humankind as I saw here in Oklahoma after ours, or on tv after 9-11. But in the days and years following, we are seeing some of the other side too unfortunately.

McCarthy, in this book, gives us the ultimate tragedy and then lets us take a journey with two who have hope and love for one another but also handle life's trials a bit differently. This is a horrific story and you do see man fall from humanity itself, but you see too that even in this landscape, there are those who keep to the faith, their faith. They dont stop caring or living by rules that should govern how we treat one another and also how we treat each blessed day of our life!

From the first of the book, i know this is going to be a dark book with no rainbow at the end, not with what has happened in the world, to the world. My biggest hope for them, was that they would at least find other people who had maintained their humanity too before either of them died and leave them there. That was the best I figured I could hope for.

There is beauty in this book, in the relationship of the father and son. It tugged at my heart, every time the son said Papa, or they would talk and the father would tell him what they were going to do or reassure him and he would say simply, OKAY. I could see this little boy stumbling down the road with his papa and after a heavy question on his heart had been answered, just saying, okay. That OKAY to me, meant such trust in Papa, even when he wasnt sure papa was telling the truth, he trusted him that if it was not, it was still out of love and thats all he needed to know. And the father, watching his son sleep and thinking of him as his gift from God, his proof of God. This is truly a wonderful love story of a father and son which is why , even in the end, when the son is saved and maybe to a better life, I sobbed so hard. I dont do that with books, I did with this one. I was haunted for days over the dark scenes of this book, there were some that were just uttterly frightening but it also made me think about my own life and how blessed I am. I have no family in my life now, no husband,no children, I am disabled at barely 50, but I am so tremendously blessed every day and I thank God every day for what I do have. This book made me think about it even more. And it made me ask myself, am I traveling my journey of life in the best and fullest and most caring way I can. Do I keep my fire going all the time. Its an amazing book.
Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
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maxcat
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)

I thought this book was very compelling; it makes you wonder if something like that will eventually happen. In some instances, it reminded so much of The War of the Worlds where the main character had to hunt for food and trusted no one. It's man versus nature. And it doesn't matter what is right or wrong; you wing it and do the best you can under these circumstances.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep - Robert Frost
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)


maxcat wrote:
I thought this book was very compelling; it makes you wonder if something like that will eventually happen. In some instances, it reminded so much of The War of the Worlds where the main character had to hunt for food and trusted no one. It's man versus nature. And it doesn't matter what is right or wrong; you wing it and do the best you can under these circumstances.


See and I see him saying, no matter what happens, how bad things are, it DOES matter what is right or wrong if man is going to survive, if humanity is going to and his son represents that hope, that sense of goodness and right.
Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
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maxcat
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)

Thanks, vivivo 1, the world will continue, in my belief whether we are here on this planet or not. It depends on what we do with it in the next few centuries. We are trashing this world and it's up to us as people whole make up this world to start cleaning it up right now or something like what happened in the book will occur.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep - Robert Frost
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vivico1
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)


maxcat wrote:
Thanks, vivivo 1, the world will continue, in my belief whether we are here on this planet or not. It depends on what we do with it in the next few centuries. We are trashing this world and it's up to us as people whole make up this world to start cleaning it up right now or something like what happened in the book will occur.


heres a real oppinion and belief for ya, I dont believe we have one century left period. This is a spiritually toned book, so i will say, with all thats going on and all that has been prophesied, we dont have 100 years left before Christ comes again, not that many signs left to fulfill. I know people have said that for ages but this is it.
Vivian
~Those who do not read are no better off than those who can not.~ Chinese proverb
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Willson
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)

I just finished the book maybe 15 minutes ago (read the book in 2 days). I have read a lot of posts on these forums, and you all have had a great discussion. To me, the book was about life and survival in the most basic elemental form. These people were stripped of everything except for the bare essentials for survival. The strongest scene for me was at the very end when the boy saw a man with a shotgun coming his way. Instead of fleeing, he stayed. To me, this was all about trust. The boy had come to an end in which he probably could not go much further, but he still had hope and found a way to go on, even in the midst of losing his father.

In the Oprah interview, McCarthy said that what we should get out of this book, along with anything else, is that we should appreciate things more. Not really materialistic things, but life in general. I think that is very powerful and I certainly see where he is coming from. The journey of the boy and his father was so profound and moving. They went through hell and back but still had hope the entire time. Living was more important that just giving up, even through times we can't even imagine. I certainly stopped and reflected for a few minutes after reading the book. My little troubles in life certainly pailed in comparison to the troubles these characters went through.

Life is good.
in McCarthy's words "You always have that hope that today I am going to do something better than I have ever done."
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Paul_Hochman
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Re: The Road (spoiler whole book)



Willson wrote:
I just finished the book maybe 15 minutes ago (read the book in 2 days). I have read a lot of posts on these forums, and you all have had a great discussion. To me, the book was about life and survival in the most basic elemental form. These people were stripped of everything except for the bare essentials for survival. The strongest scene for me was at the very end when the boy saw a man with a shotgun coming his way. Instead of fleeing, he stayed. To me, this was all about trust. The boy had come to an end in which he probably could not go much further, but he still had hope and found a way to go on, even in the midst of losing his father.

In the Oprah interview, McCarthy said that what we should get out of this book, along with anything else, is that we should appreciate things more. Not really materialistic things, but life in general. I think that is very powerful and I certainly see where he is coming from. The journey of the boy and his father was so profound and moving. They went through hell and back but still had hope the entire time. Living was more important that just giving up, even through times we can't even imagine. I certainly stopped and reflected for a few minutes after reading the book. My little troubles in life certainly pailed in comparison to the troubles these characters went through.

Life is good.
in McCarthy's words "You always have that hope that today I am going to do something better than I have ever done."




Excellent thoughts, Willson. I too was struck by McCarthy's and the book's ultimate message. Enjoy what you've got in life as it could be just a fleeting moment.
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