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All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy (1992)

  1. 20
    Cannery Row by John Steinbeck (mabith)
    mabith: McCarthy's border trilogy reminded me so heavily of Steinbeck. I think if you enjoy one author you'll enjoy the other as well.
  2. 10
    Butcher's Crossing by John Williams (thatguyzero)
  3. 00
    Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry (sturlington)
  4. 00
    In The fall by Jeffrey Lent (jhowell)
  5. 00
    Close Range by Annie Proulx (chrisharpe)
  6. 01
    Griffintown by Marie Hélène Poitras (Serviette)
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» See also 488 mentions

English (137)  Dutch (2)  Spanish (2)  Danish (1)  Hebrew (1)  All languages (143)
Showing 1-5 of 137 (next | show all)
I'm not sure when I became someone who likes Cormac McCarthy books. But I read The Road and loved it (as much as one can love such a dark and depressing story). Somewhere along the line All The Pretty Horses ended up in my collection and I decided "Why not?" and again I was struck by how vividly McCarthy can paint a scene with his words. The main characters, John Grady and Rawlins, were so well written and such strong characters that I felt that I knew them personally. I had to remind myself repeatedly though that they were only 16, as they were wise well beyond their years. I'm very excited to learn that this is the first of a trilogy and that the "adventure" doesn't have to end here. ( )
  she_climber | Jul 31, 2015 |
This book made me forget that I hate horses. ( )
  trilliams | May 30, 2015 |
*** on GoodReads, **1/2 on LibraryThing. ( )
  BenKline | Mar 27, 2015 |
This book is a spelling and grammar check nightmare. When I first started reading the book, the lack of quotation marks, commas, and acceptable grammar confused me. I soon lost track of the dialogue and when it was dialogue versus descriptions. Once the story got cranking, the book captivated me and I almost forgot about the punctuation. I liked the premise of the story and I always like a happy ending. Two thumbs up. ( )
  branjohb | Feb 23, 2015 |
In (if I've figured the dates right) 1949, sixteen-year-old John Grady Cole leaves Texas with a friend when the ranch he grew up on is sold after his parents' divorce. The two boys head for Mexico on horseback, where Cole experiences violence, love, hardship, other people's perspectives on Mexican history, and some deep, subtle musings about the forces that shape our lives, whether fate, choice or chance. Also, horses. Lots and lots of horses.

McCarthy's writing varies wildly, from a little too sparse, to beautifully sparse, to nicely poetic, to really kind of overdone. But on the whole, it works; the novel drew me along very nicely, and even made me forget for long periods the fact that I'm really, really not interested in horses. It did, however, force me to remember all of my long-ago high school and college Spanish classes. And very glad I was of them, too, because otherwise I suspect the huge amount of untranslated Spanish would have quickly become frustrating. ( )
  bragan | Dec 16, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 137 (next | show all)
You can’t just nip at darkness, so when you read this book, from page one you feel a threat following you, some animistic urging that keeps you going by the way McCarthy manipulates your demonic love of the sounds of speech.
 
All the Pretty Horses may indicate McCarthy's desire to come in out of the cold of those Tennessee mountain winters, but his imagination is at its best there with Arthur Ownby or with the monstrous Judge of Blood Meridian drowning dogs. He is best with what nature gives or imposes, rather than with the observations of culture.
added by Shortride | editThe New York Review of Books, Denis Donoghue (pay site) (Jun 24, 1993)
 
The magnetic attraction of Mr. McCarthy's fiction comes first from the extraordinary quality of his prose; difficult as it may sometimes be, it is also overwhelmingly seductive. Powered by long, tumbling many-stranded sentences, his descriptive style is elaborate and elevated, but also used effectively to frame realistic dialogue, for which his ear is deadly accurate.
 

» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
McCarthy, Cormacprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Muller, FrankNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wolf, HansTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The candleflame and the image of the candleflame caught in the pierglass twisted and righted when he entered the hall and again when he shut the door.
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There were storms to the south and masses of clouds that moved slowly along the horizon with their long dark tendrils trailing in the rain. That night they camped on a ledge of rock above the plains and watched the lightning all along the horizon provoke from the seamless dark the distant mountain ranges again and again. (p. 93 of original ed.)
The boy who rode on slightly before him sat a horse not only as if he'd been born to it which he was but as if he were begot by malice or mischance into some queer land where horses never were he would have found them anyway.
He thought that in the beauty of the world hid a secret. He thought the world’s heart beat at some terrible cost and that the world’s pain and its beauty moved in a relationship of diverging equity and that in this headlong deficit the blood of multitudes might ultimately be exacted for the vision of a single flower.
Scars have a strange power to remind us of our past.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0679744398, Paperback)

Part bildungsroman, part horse opera, part meditation on courage and loyalty, this beautifully crafted novel won the National Book Award in 1992. The plot is simple enough. John Grady Cole, a 16-year-old dispossessed Texan, crosses the Rio Grande into Mexico in 1949, accompanied by his pal Lacey Rawlins. The two precocious horsemen pick up a sidekick--a laughable but deadly marksman named Jimmy Blevins--encounter various adventures on their way south and finally arrive at a paradisiacal hacienda where Cole falls into an ill-fated romance. Readers familiar with McCarthy's Faulknerian prose will find the writing more restrained than in Suttree and Blood Meridian. Newcomers will be mesmerized by the tragic tale of John Grady Cole's coming of age.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:21 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

Cut off from the life of ranching he has come to love by his grandfather's death, John Grady Cole flees to Mexico, where he and his two companions embark on a rugged and cruelly idyllic adventure.

(summary from another edition)

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