Brook Trout for Cormac McCarthy

Cormac McCarthy’s novel The Road is a bleak read, as it centers on a man and boy’s experiences in a post-apocalyptic landscape. It’s rough for what some survivors do to keep surviving.

The novel’s last paragraph stunned me. That doesn’t happen often as I read, but a handful of writers have had that affect on me with the emotional impact and precision of their language. Besides McCarthy, other authors include Karen Russell, Ray Bradbury, Kelly Link, and Harlan Ellison.

Let’s steer back to The Road. After reading the novel, I felt inspired to draw my interpretation of the last paragraph. The above drawing is the result. Apologies for the watermarks. I spent a lot of time on this drawing, and I didn’t want someone to grab it and use it in their own project.

I won’t quote the last paragraph here, since I believe a large part of its impact comes from the journey of reading all the paragraphs before it. A full journey on the road, rather than flying to the end.

But if you want to skip all those other paragraphs, you can read the last one here.