No Country for Old Men

No Country for Old Men

Book - 2006
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In his blistering new novel, Cormac McCarthy returns to the Texas-Mexico border, setting of his famed Border Trilogy . The time is our own, when rustlers have given way to drug-runners and small towns have become free-fire zones. One day, a good old boy named Llewellyn Moss finds a pickup truck surrounded by a bodyguard of dead men. A load of heroin and two million dollars in cash are still in the back. When Moss takes the money, he sets off a chain reaction of catastrophic violence that not even the law-in the person of aging, disillusioned Sheriff Bell-can contain.As Moss tries to evade his pursuers-in particular a mysterious mastermind who flips coins for human lives-McCarthy simultaneously strips down the American crime novel and broadens its concerns to encompass themes as ancient as the Bible and as bloodily contemporary as this morning's headlines. No Country for Old Men is a triumph.
Publisher: New York : Vintage International, 2006.
Edition: First Vintage International edition
ISBN: 9780375706677
Branch Call Number: MCCARTHY
Characteristics: 309 pages ; 21 cm.


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“How does a man decide in what order to abandon his life?”
The oddities of human nature are on full display as Cormac McCarthy uses a unique set of personas to explain an ethical dilemma. The reader is immediately introduced to a man named Llewelyn Moss, a seasoned hunter, who stumbles upon a drug deal gone wrong, and 2 million dollars in cash on the scene. Llewelyn flees the scene with the cash, but he happens to catch a few bounty hunters on his tail, including the infamous Anton Chigurh, a “psychopathic killer.” As both men try to escape with the money, an old man known as Sheriff Bell gets fed up with all the hassle and attempts to seize the money. Even though it may come off as a stereotypical “Western” book, it is much more; the ideas presented by McCarthy are shown in a very real, intimate way. While fans of Westerns would surely get a kick out of this book, it very closely resembles books like All The Beautiful Sinners by Stephen Graham Jones; a culmination of suspense and mystery. McCarthy presents the reader with an atypical foil to the antagonist in the form of Sheriff Bell; while it is expected for him to be a brave ‘hero’ of sorts, he is instead presented to the reader as a coward. This book is a must-read for anyone looking for a quick but introspective read.

Apr 20, 2021

Rating: 4/5. A-.

An ominous, minimalist, matter - of - fact approach to the age - old conversation about life's most existential questions concerning moral rightness, fear of change, and the consequences of us at our worst. If you feel as though you've heard this story before, it's because you probably have. It's one that has been passed down and re - told since the beginning of time, and one that will probably be kept alive until the end of it.
This novel isn't a polarization of human nature; it isn't about good and evil, black and white, despite what its archetypes might have readers believe. It's about our tremendous spectrum of capabilities, all that we can be, all that we can't, should and shouldn't, and the vastly unexplored territory of human indifference.
It's complicated, yet simply stated, but it is not a simple book, nor is it for the faint of heart. It gets its point across without saying much, but its quiet is deafening. Perhaps, its value lies most in all the things that it does not say, and that which allows us to come to an infinite number of conclusions, entertaining the possibility that all might be correct, because that is the extent to which this book reflects life.
A big, intense story, one that is bitingly clever at times, and deeply moving, too. Cold, calculated decisions overpower, and ultimately seal the fate of, love and loyalty, emphasizing the damaging effects of male behavior.
This is a book that will stay with you for a long time. That is, until we, as a species, can outgrow and evolve past that which peers back at us from these pages.

Sep 30, 2020

No Country for Old Men is a fiction novel by Cormac McCarthy. Cormac McCarthy uses an unorthodox writing style, one which does not use quotations or dialogue tags. This novel incorporates many different genres such as mystery, western or crime. The novel jumps around following the main characters as their narratives intertwine. No Country for Old Men is fairly short and not necessarily a difficult read. I would recommend this book to people who like crime and mystery. This novel deals with money, drugs and violence so I would not recommend it if any of these make you uncomfortable. I give No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy four out of five stars.
@Nessie of the Hamilton Public Library's Teen Review Board

Jul 20, 2020

Good story and some great passages. The author's continued use of 'and' 3 or 4 times in one sentence seemed out of place with some of the other brilliant paragraphs. It's as if he got lazy for a spell and then found his flow again. Odd. Maybe it's just his style.

Jun 07, 2019

McCarthy's No Country For Old Men is in essence a western, but McCarthy adds many more layers than some of the typical shoot-em-ups that come to mind when you hear "westerns". Chigurh has me horrified as I read, and the sheriff's juxtaposition with such a villain magnifies his kindness and innocence, despite his experience in war. I look forward to delving in many more times to find the smaller details McCarthy may have dropped.

Nov 28, 2018

I listened to the audio book. There were 7 discs. At disc 6, it was over. There was an entire 1/7 of the book that had nothing to do with the rest and was really unnecessary. The story idea was interesting, but how it played out and the excessive wordiness of especially the villain was a huge drawback. I can't imagine how the movie got an Oscar, it must have been on acting alone.

RogerDeBlanck Jan 31, 2018

No writer has captured the contemporary Southwest with more thunder and aplomb than Cormac McCarthy. His novels depict a vision of an often rugged and violent way of life along the border region of Texas and Mexico, but never has one of his novels taken on a more sinister quality than in No Country For Old Men. The drug war is the center of focus in this suspenseful drama. When Llewelyn Moss finds a briefcase of $2 million at the site of a heroine exchange gone disastrously wrong, he knows that taking the cash will endanger his life. In pursuit to reclaim the money is Anton Chigurh, a psychopath who uses his own maniacal form of justice to deal with those he encounters. With the body count mounting, Sheriff Bell hopes to help Moss while tracking the whereabouts of the ghost-like Chigurh. McCarthy presents a host of characters spanning both sides of the divide between the deranged criminals of the cartels who work like machines in the trafficking of narcotics and the conscientious men of law enforcement who attempt to put a boot in their path. In the end, the drug world’s malignant nature claims the lives of men both good and evil.

Nicr Jun 30, 2017

Masterful neo-western noir. A breakneck plot that defies conventions. And evil that goes on and on.

Aug 07, 2016

The movie complements the novel and vice versa. The book brings better character development; the movie adds intensity to the story.

Jan 21, 2016

There is something wonderfully American about No Country for Old Men. Obviously, the book is set mostly in Texas- but that's not what I mean. What I mean is that the entire time I was reading the book I felt like I could draw a direct line from McCarthy to Palahniuk to Tarantino, etc. Both thematically and artistically, this novel belongs in the cannon of American literature.

I enjoyed the way, in a sense, the reader could see the struggle the author had with certain themes and philosophy. Most notably the conversation between Chigurh and Carla Jean where one could see the antimony of choice versus fate. Of morality versus amorality. Value versus invalue. Old versus new.

I personally found McCarthy's writing style, at times, brutal and difficult to follow. While I enjoyed his minimilistic style, sometimes I wish he would of used charters' names instead of pronouns. Also, I missed quotation marks. Overall, however, I thought this was a great book.

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Jun 09, 2014

... some teachers come across a survey that was sent out back in the thirties to a number of schools around the country. Had this questionnaire about what was the problems with teachin in the schools. And they come across these forms, they'd been filled out and sent in from around the country answer in these questions. And the biggest problems they could name was things like talkin in class and runnin in the hallways. Chewin gum. Copyin homework. Things of that nature. So they got one of them forms that was blank and printed up a bunch of em and sent em back out to the same schools. Forty years later. Well, here come the answers back. Rape, arson, murder. Drugs. Suicide. So I think about that. Because a lot of the time ever when I say anything about how the world is goin to hell in a handbasket people will just sort of smile and tell me I'm gettin old.

Jun 09, 2014

These old people I talk to, if you could of told em that there would be people on the streets of our Texas towns with green hair and bones in their noses speakin a language they couldnt even understand, well, they just flat out wouldnt of believed you. But what if you'd of told em it was their own grandchildren?

Dec 21, 2008

I had two dreams about him after he died. I dont remember the first one all that well but it was about meetin him in town somewheres and he give me some money and I think I lost it. But the second one it was like we was both back in older times and I was on horseback goin through the mountains of a night. Goin through this pass in the mountains. It was cold and there was snow on the ground and he rode past me and kept on goin. Never said nothin. He just rode on past and he had this blanket wrapped around him and he had his head down and when he rode past I seen he was carryin fire in a horn the way people used to do and I could see the horn from the light inside of it. About the color of the moon. And in the dream I knew that he was goin on ahead and that he was fixin to make a fire somewhere out there in all that dark and all that cold and I knew that whenever I got there he would be there. And then I woke up.


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Jun 07, 2019

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Mar 29, 2013

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