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The Crossing (Paperback)

Author:  Cormac McCarthy
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Learn more about The Crossing:

Format: Paperback
ISBN-10: 0679760849
ISBN-13: 9780679760849
Sku: 30118953
Publish Date: 4/10/2007
Dimensions:  (in Inches) 8.25H x 5.5L x 1.25T
Pages:  432
See more in Literary
 
When they came south out of Grant County Boyd was not much more than a baby and the newly formed county they'd named Hidalgo was itself little older than the child. (from the first line)
In The Crossing, Cormac McCarthy fulfills the promise of All the Pretty Horses and at the same time give us a work that is darker and more visionary, a novel with the unstoppable momentum of a classic western and the elegaic power of a lost American myth.
In the late 1930s, sixteen-year-old Billy Parham captures a she-wolf that has been marauding his family''s ranch.  But instead of killing it, he decides to take it back to the mountains of Mexico.  With that crossing, he begins an arduous and often dreamlike journey into a country where men meet ghosts and violence strikes as suddenly as heat-lightning--a world where there is no order "save that which death has put there."
An essential novel by any measure, The Crossing is luminous and appalling, a book that touches, stops, and starts the heart and mind at once.
From the Publisher:
In The Crossing, Cormac McCarthy fulfills the promise of All the Pretty Horses and at the same time give us a work that is darker and more visionary, a novel with the unstoppable momentum of a classic western and the elegaic power of a lost American myth.In the late 1930s, sixteen-year-old Billy Parham captures a she-wolf that has been marauding his family's ranch. But instead of killing it, he decides to take it back to the mountains of Mexico. With that crossing, he begins an arduous and often dreamlike journey into a country where men meet ghosts and violence strikes as suddenly as heat-lightning--a world where there is no order "save that which death has put there."An essential novel by any measure, The Crossing is luminous and appalling, a book that touches, stops, and starts the heart and mind at once.Following All the Pretty Little Horses in Cormac McCarthy's Border Trilogy is a novel whose force of language is matched only by its breadth of experience and depth of thought. In the bootheel of New Mexico hard on the frontier, Billy and Boyd Parham are just boys in the years before the Second World War, but on the cusp of unimaginable events. First comes a trespassing Indian and the dream of wolves running wild amongst the cattle lately brought onto the plain by settlers - this when all the wisdom of trappers has disappeared along with the trappers themselves. And so Billy sets forth at the age of sixteen on an unwitting journey into the souls of boys and animals and men. Having trapped a she-wolf he would restore to the mountains of Mexico, he is long gone and returns to find everything he left behind transformed utterly in his absence. Except his kid brother, Boyd, with whom he strikes out yet again to reclaim what is theirs - thus crossing into "that antique gaze from whence there could be no way back forever". What they find instead, singly and together, is in extraordinary panoply of fiestas and circuses, dogs and horses and hawks, pilgrims and revolutionaries, grand haciendas and forlorn cantinas, bandits and gypsies and roving tribes, a young girl alone on the road, a mystery in the mountain wilds, and a myth in the making. And in this wider world they fight a war as rageful as the one neither, in the end, will join up for back home. One brother finds his destiny, while the other arrives only at his fate. An essential novel by any measure, and the transfixing middle passage of Cormac McCarthy's ongoing trilogy, The Crossing is luminous and appalling, a book that touches, stops,and starts the heart and mind at once.
Annotation:
This second volume of Cormac McCarthy's famed Border Trilogy is set in the 1940s and tells the story of 16-year-old Billy Parham and his obsessive quest to return to Mexico a pregnant she-wolf he has trapped. He leaves New Mexico, setting off on his own, and in the course of this perilous (and doomed) journey he becomes far older than his years. When Billy returns, he encounters a scene of violence and desolation: everything he left behind has been transformed. He strikes out again, this time with his younger brother, Boyd, into the unknown frontier. Boyd becomes a legendary folk hero, then disappears, and Billy's new quest is to find his lost brother. McCarthy has been compared to everyone from Hemingway to Faulkner. This fable-like tale of mythic quests and heroic despair takes on the issues of guilt and innocence, love and violence, and the power of fraternal bonds.
Author Bio
Cormac McCarthy
One of America's most formidable, iconoclastic, and enigmatic writers, Cormac McCarthy has been critically acclaimed since the publication of his first novel, THE ORCHARD KEEPER, in 1965, but he has resolutely stayed outside of the limelight of the literary world, diligently building a canon of works hailed as following in the tradition of Melville and Joyce. His editor at Random House, Albert Erskine, had edited William Faulkner, and echoes of Faulkner appeared in McCarthy's novels about the brutal and surreal South. He grew up in Tennessee, the third of six children, and oldest boy, in a Roman Catholic family; he was originally named Charles, but renamed himself Cormac after an Irish king. After dropping out of the University of Tennessee, and serving four years stationed in Alaska in the U.S. Air Force, McCarthy married the poet Lee Holleman, and moved to Chicago where he worked as an auto mechanic while finishing his first novel. (After their marriage ended, Holleman wrote DESIRE'S DOOR, a book of poems about their relationship.) Using fellowship money from the American Academy of Arts and Letter, McCarthy traveled to Ireland; on the ship crossing, he met an Englishwoman, Anne DeLisle, and they were married in England in 1966. The two traveled Europe and lived on the island of Ibiza where he completed his second novel, OUTER DARK, a bleak parable about the birth, theft, and early death of a child born out of incest. Though his fiction received wide-spread acclaim, McCarthy's dark novels never achieved large sales. He survived through various grants (including a Guggenheim) and by living an austere lifestyle in a barn on a hog farm in Tennessee--he renovated it entirely by himself, building a stone chimney, cutting and kiln-drying wood, and making a fireplace out of bricks salvaged from the boyhood home. Despite their poverty, McCarthy would decline offers to speak or lecture, and has only given one print interview (to The New York Times). In 1985, after winning the McArthur "Genius Grant" McCarthy wrote BLOOD MERIDIAN, the first of his novels to be set in Texas and the Southwest, and considered by many to be his masterpiece. By this time, his second marriage had ended, and McCarthy was living in motels, carrying a high-watt bulb to write by. With ALL THE PRETTY HORSES, the first of his "Border Crossing" trilogy, McCarthy finally began to emerge in the public consciousness, and when in 2007 his post-apocalyptic novel THE ROAD was selected for the Oprah Book Club and won the Pulitzer Prize for Literature, his literary ascendance was complete. Over 1,000,000 copies of the novel were printed, and critics lavished praise on McCarthy's starkly riveting and prophetic prose. McCarthy's subjects have always been universal, Biblical, and filled with the desperation of humanity; in the 1980s, Saul Bellow honored McCarthy's "absolutely overpowering use of language, his life-giving and death-dealing sentences."

Praise

Washington Post
"'The Crossing' generates an immense and sorrowful power....[It is a] soul-shaking novel."

Boston Globe
"With McCarthy's white-water prose and fierce, mythic rendering of providence and doom, the comparison to Faulkner is merited and due....[This is] a breathtaking story, told in spare and mesmerizing prose."

Wall Street Journal
"McCarthy has achieved something only a few artists even attempt: He has created his won world...beautiful, nightmarish, isolated."

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"Sparse and laconic, yet brilliantly evocative...a work that will stand a long, long time and which comes close to the ever-sought, never-reached accolade of 'the great American novel.'"

Chicago Tribune
"A masterly display of some of the most pitch-perfect prose being written these days....[A] brilliantly imagined book."

New York Times Book Review
"'The Crossing' is a miracle in prose, an American original."

Product Attributes

Product attributeeBooks:   Kobo
Product attributeBook Format:   Paperback
Product attributeNumber of Pages:   0432
Product attributePublisher:   Vintage Books USA
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