July 9th, 2007, 04:45 AM
It’s now out in paperback in the UK – and my word, what a book. The last time anything that had such impact on me was when I first read Primo Levi’s “The Drowned and the Saved”, the first of the “Camp” books which I read; I sat down one evening to start that book, and when I looked up it was daylight. “The Road” was similar in effect, as I started it late one night last week, read until I just couldn’t stay awake any longer, and then grabbed straight for the book again the moment I woke up a few hours later. Books that do this are few and far between, which may be a good thing – there were times reading this one that I could actually feel my muscles hurting, and I’d become aware that I’d squirmed into an uncomfortable position because I was so wrapped up in the fortunes of the man and the boy. I never imagined that a simple utterance like “Okay” could take on such meaning – by just a few pages in, it was practically bringing tears to my eyes every time the boy said it. And I have to say that I think “There is no God and we are his prophets” is the most perfect sentence I have ever read – it is the absolute essence of 21st century life, I fear.
This is a book to be remembered, and re-read, for the rest of my life. Magnificent.