Remind me never to poor-mouth a noted author's darkness. McCarthy has indeed created his great masterpiece here, and though it is dark, I remain slack-jawed at the beauty and humanity and grace of The Road.
I finished last night, but I couldn't bring myself to post just yet. I still feel like I need to reread the ending to get a firmer footing. So, why don't I do just that? Please enjoy the music while you wait. . . .
Okay. I've reread and been touched by the hope of it all over again. The world McCarthy has portrayed is decidedly bleak - to the point where I (like the characters) wondered about the reason for going on at all. I just couldn't see how it could end. Not that it needed to end well. But I couldn't understand the idea of survival simply for the sake of survival. . .with no prospect of improvement. In the end, though, all I felt was hope. Even in the loss of life. Even in the continued uncertainty. Even though nothing had changed about the future except the boy's companions. I still felt unbridled hope coursing through those final pages. And perhaps it was simply because the father was right after all:
Goodness will find the little boy. It always has. It will again. (281)
Even though it is not always true, I can't help but be moved by the rightness of it.