I only discovered Cormac McCarthy a few years ago. It might even have been The Road that put me on notice. (I loved that book, by the way.) I think I read Outer Dark after that one. Outer Dark is my second-favorite. Blood Meridian is my favorite. So where does All the Pretty Horses fit in, you ask? I’ll put it in the middle, below those I just mentioned but above Child of God, which I didn’t like (and which I read in one sitting at my local Barnes and Noble. I didn’t buy the book). All the Pretty Horses is good – not his best, but good. I enjoyed it, though it’s a bit of a blur since I read through it so quickly.
It’s not as dark as the others, and it’s the first of a trilogy about which I know nothing besides what’s in this one. Parts are graphic and hard to read. It’s about two young cowboys, John Grady Cole and Leslie Rawlins, who leave their homes in Texas to work in Mexico. On the way, a kid named Blevins joins them and causes all kinds of problems. Cole and Rawlins end up working on a ranch, and Cole ends up in love with the owner’s daughter, and things don’t go well. Mexican prison is involved. They eventually decide (separately) to go back to Texas.
I don’t really have much to say about All the Pretty Horses. When I get onto these reading tears, I get through books so quickly that I don’t remember them for long after. At the same time, it’s worth it because sometimes I need to escape from reality for a while, even (and especially) when I can’t do it physically. Which might mean that I’ll slow down, now, since I finally got out of Shreveport: I’m in Ann Arbor, Michigan for a library conference. Except instead of going out last night, I bought a bottle of wine and a corkscrew and spent the evening reading. The TV hasn’t been on in my hotel room, and it probably won’t come on tonight, either.
Anyway. I liked All the Pretty Horses, though it’s not McCarthy’s best, and it’s not my favorite. At some point, I’ll probably read the rest of the trilogy, but nothing about this book makes me want to jump to the next like, say, Game of Thrones does. It’s its own book, and I imagine that the other two are, too, though I might eventually prove myself wrong. I’m not in a hurry.
Bonus: Here’s pictorial evidence of what happened last night!