Saturday, July 07, 2012

Five notable "What If?" books

Karen Thompson Walker is author of the debut novel The Age of Miracles.

For The Daily Beast, she tagged her five favorite "What If?" books -- "books that envision our world having undergone a great change."

One title on her list:
The Road
by Cormac McCarthy

I love the way McCarthy manages to blend a realistic story of global catastrophe with the intimate narrative of a boy and his father. Plus, every sentence is like poetry.

First sentence: “When he woke in the woods in the dark and cold of the night he’d reach out to touch the child sleeping beside him.”
Read about another book on the list.

The Road appears on John Mullan's list of ten of the top long walks in literature, Tony Bradman's top ten list of father and son stories, Ramin Karimloo's six favorite books list, Jon Krakauer's five best list of books about mortality and existential angst, William Skidelsky's list of the top ten most vivid accounts of being marooned in literature, Liz Jensen's top 10 list of environmental disaster stories, the Guardian's list of books to change the climate, David Nicholls' top ten list of literary tear jerkers, and the Times (of London) list of the 100 best books of the decade. Sam Anderson of New York magazine claims "that we'll still be talking about [The Road] in ten years."

--Marshal Zeringue