“There is room on the stage for one beast and one alone.”
–Judge Holden

Blood Meridian Or The Evening Redness in the West ranks as one of Cormac McCarthy’s most violent, savage and philosophical novels. This story takes place on the Texas-Mexico border in the 1850s. These characters ride across the desert like a gang of Old Testament marauders.

Blood Meridian echoes Sam Peckinpah‘s murderous films such as Ride The High Country, Bring Me The Head of Alfredo Garcia and The Wild Bunch with a venomous riddle of violence. The main characters–The Kid (a 14-year old Tennessean), Toadvine, Tobin, Captain Glanton, David Brown and The Judge (perhaps Lucifer himself), propel this novel’s ruthless balance between the mysterious tightrope of good and evil. Vivid pictures of grimness erupt on every page of this hypnotic book.

The Judge explains to The Kid eerie realities regarding the delicate calculus of fate: “A man seeks his own destiny and no other. Will not nil. Any man who could discover his own fate and elect therefore some opposite course could only come at last to that selfsame reckoning at the same appointed time, for each man’s destiny is as large as the world he inhabits and contains within it all opposites as well.” 

This merciless story forces the reader to understand the deadly nature of how all territories are established. Every sentence in this book should be examined with wonder. Blood Meridian counts as one of this writer’s favorite three McCarthy novels along with Suttree and No Country For Old Men. Blood Meridian endures as one mean piece of art.


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