I’m keeping track of every book I read this year, month by month.
Just in case anyone does fancy reading something I’ve mentioned, I’m giving details of the books (no more of a spoiler than you’d read on the blurb) and a rating. My rating system is 1 – 5:
- 1 Awful, the writer should be banished to a far away land
- 2 Poor, I didn’t die of boredom but it was a struggle to reach the end
- 3 Average, fine but I’ll have forgotten about it in a year
- 4 Good, I enjoyed this
- 5 Excellent, hot damn this is a great book and the writer should be knighted
Title(s): All The Pretty Horses – by Cormac McCarthy [This is book 1 of The Border Trilogy]
About: John Grady Cole travels to Mexico with his best friend Lacey Rawlins. Before they get there, they meet Jimmy Blevins, who loses his horse and gun. He persuades Grady and Rawlins to help him retrieve them, which leads them on a path of loss, revenge and survival. Oh and there’s a love story thrown in of course.
My Rating: 5 Excellent.
I’m glad I read some other McCarthy books before reading what is arguably his best known work. These are not what I consider ‘easy reads’. That’s not to say they’re difficult or unpleasant to read but, to be complete cliché, they take you on a bit of a ‘journey’. Can’t believe I said that. It’s true, though.
I really liked John Grady’s character and you end up feeling his highs, lows, loves and losses. McCarthy’s books always leave me with a sense of loss, this one was no different. To elucidate on the book’s plot would undoubtedly spoil it for anyone wanting to read… so, I won’t.
This certainly should be on your to read list.
Read this if you like: Anything else by Cormac McCarthy; Of Mice & Men;
Title(s): The Crossing by Cormac McCarthy [Book 2 of The Border Trilogy]
About: Billy Parham decides to return a pregnant wolf he’s captured, to Mexico. The book is about so much more than that, but again, I don’t want to spoil anything for you.
My Rating: 5, Excellent
I almost wanted to give the previous book slightly less than 5 because this one deserves a higher number. I can’t remember the last time I gasped out loud at a book. Throughout reading this I had to explain to my partner what was happening, because I just couldn’t believe the twists and turns.
Although an incredibly sad book (for me, anyway), this volume of the trilogy (and the previous book) had nowhere near the bleakness of some McCarthy’s earlier stuff. For that, I’m glad. It gave me a much deeper connection to the characters and plot, without that awful feeling of discomfort I’d had with his earlier books.
I actually thought this one was leagues ahead of All The Pretty Horses and I’m looking forward to reading the third one, ‘Cities of the Plain’. I’ve taken a break from them for now though; genuinely they’re so intense, so I’ve been reading some lighter stuff before coming back to the trilogy.
Read this if you like: See above.
Until next time. See you in June for May’s reads.