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The Sunset Limited - Cormac McCarthy

Paperback Published: 4th February 2011
ISBN: 9780330518192
Number Of Pages: 142

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A novel in dramatic form – set to become a film staring Tommy Lee Jones and Samuel L. Jackson.

A startling encounter on a New York subway platform leads two strangers to a run-down tenement where a life-or-death decision must be made.

In that small apartment, 'Black' and 'White', as the two men are known, begin a conversation that leads each back through his own history – mining the origins of two diametrically opposing world views, they begin a dialectic redolent of the best of Beckett.

White is a professor whose seemingly enviable existence of relative ease has left him nonetheless in despair. Black, an ex-con and ex-addict, is the more hopeful of the men – though he is just as desperate to convince White of the power of faith as White is to deny it.

Their aim is no less than this: to discover the meaning of life.

Deft, spare, and full of artful tension, The Sunset Limited is a beautifully crafted, consistently thought-provoking, and deeply intimate work by one of the most insightful writers of our time.

About The Author

Cormac McCarthy is the author of ten previous novels, and among his honours are the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.

Industry Reviews

" A brilliantly articulated piece, penned by a wildly acclaimed fiction writer. Nothing short of dazzling. So astonishingly effecting, so powerful, so stimulating!" - "Chicago Tribune"

Probably better on stage than the page

4

I'm a real fan of Cormack McCarthy's, but this didn't really grab me. As I said in my byline, I do feel it works better as a performance piece. That said, it had some interesting and thought-provoking things to say.

Perth WA

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The Sunset Limited

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ISBN: 9780330518192
ISBN-10: 0330518194
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 142
Published: 4th February 2011
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 20.2 x 13.2  x 1.4
Weight (kg): 0.138
Edition Number: 1

Earn 41 Qantas Points
on this Book

Cormac McCarthy

About the Author



Cormac McCarthy was born in Rhode Island on July 20, 1933. He is the third of six children (the eldest son) born to Charles Joseph and Gladys Christina McGrail McCarthy (he has two brothers and three sisters). Originally named Charles (after his father), he renamed himself Cormac after the Irish King (another source says that McCarthy's family was responsible for legally changing his name to the Gaelic equivalent of "son of Charles").


Before his first novel, The Orchard Keeper, was published (1965 — McCarthy's editor at Random House was Faulkner's long-time editor, Albert Erskine), McCarthy had received a traveling fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. In 1965, using this money, he left America on the liner Sylvania, intending to visit the home of his Irish ancestors (a King Cormac McCarthy built Blarney Castle). While on the trip, he met Anne DeLisle, a young English singer/dancer working on the ship; they were married in England in 1966. Another grant was given McCarthy in 1966, a Rockefeller Foundation Grant (1966-68). He and Anne toured southern England, France, Switzerland, Italy, and Spain. Then they settled on the island of Ibiza, which was a kind of artist's colony at the time. Here, McCarthy completed revisions of Outer Dark.

Child of God was published in 1973. Inspired by actual events in Sevier County, it garnered mixed reviews, some praising it as great, while others found it despicable.

In 1979, McCarthy published his fourth novel, Suttree, a book which had occupied his writing life on and off for twenty or so years. It was said by many to be McCarthy's best work to date, and some critics still maintain that it is his finest novel. However, the book drew some negative reviews, too. At least one reviewer (who wrote for the Memphis Press Scimitar) was roundly rebuked in a letter to the editor written by novelist and historian Shelby Foote.

Blood Meridian was published in 1985, but received little review attention at the time. Now, however, it is considered a turning point in his career. Some critics prefer his recent western writing, of which Blood Meridian was the first example. Others feel that he has strayed too far from his roots, that his westerns lack something. But Blood Meridian, followed closely by Suttree, is now generally regarded as McCarthy's finest work to date. McCarthy did extensive research for the novel, and it is based quite heavily on actual events. The author visited all the locales of the book and even learned Spanish to further his research.

All the Pretty Horses, the first volume of The Border Trilogy, was published by Knopf in 1992. Unlike McCarthy's earlier books, this one became a publishing sensation, garnering many excellent reviews. It became a New York Times bestseller, and sold 190,000 copies in hardcover within the first six months of publication. It finally gave McCarthy the wide readership that had eluded him for many years.

McCarthy edited a play he had written in the mid-1970s, which was published in the summer of 1994 by Ecco Press. Called The Stonemason, the tragedy explores the fortunes of three generations of a black family in Kentucky. Shortly after the publication of The Stonemason, Knopf released the second volume of The Border Trilogy, The Crossing. The book features the tale of Billy Parham's attempt to return a trapped she-wolf to its home in the northern Mexican mountains and the tragic consequences of his adventure.

The third volume of The Border Trilogy was published in 1998; Cities of the Plain, unites John Grady Cole, the main character of All the Pretty Horses, with The Crossing's Billy Parham, and centers on Cole's doomed relationship with a Mexican prostitute. Not as well-received by critics as the first two books in the Border Trilogy, Cities of the Plain is nonetheless notable for its epilogue, which reaches back to Suttree in its imagery and simultaneously casts the entire Border Trilogy in a new and fascinating light, unifying the previous two volumes of the trilogy.

McCarthy continued writing; his next novel, No Country for Old Men, was published in July 2005 from Alfred A. Knopf.

Visit Cormac McCarthy's Booktopia Author Page


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