Friday, April 18, 2014

Ten top novels of desert war

Robert Allison has been a theatre director, a film music reviewer and a copy-editor. He lives in London. His novel The Letter Bearer is published by Granta Books.

One of Allison's top ten novels of desert war, as shared at the Guardian:
Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy

Widely held to be his finest novel, McCarthy's pitiless and virtuosic take on the American-Indian Wars of the 1840s won fame both for its hyperbolic, quasi-biblical prose and for its bludgeoning violence – though arguably its greatest achievement is in the creation of Judge Holden, a wily and erudite demi-god who gleefully fiddles and foxes his way from one slaughter to the next. Littered with scenes of carnage, the desert backdrop here is not only an inhospitable environment but a purgatorial doom, in which every living or natural thing seems to exist in a state of antipathy.
Read about another entry on the list.

Blood Meridian is one authority's pick for the Great Texas novel; it is among Alexandra Silverman's top fourteen wrathful stories, James Franco's six favorite books, Philipp Meyer's five best books that explain America, Peter Murphy's top ten literary preachers, David Vann's six favorite books, Robert Olmstead's six favorite books, Michael Crummey's top ten literary feuds, Philip Connors's top ten wilderness books, six books that made a difference to Kazuo Ishiguro, Clive Sinclair's top 10 westerns, Maile Meloy's six best books, and David Foster Wallace's five direly underappreciated post-1960 U.S. novels. It appears on the New York Times list of the best American fiction of the last 25 years and among the top ten works of literature according to Stephen King.

--Marshal Zeringue