The Best Lines From Cormac McCarthy’s Novels

For nearly 60 years, Cormac McCarthy has told powerful and mesmerizing stories set in the American South and Southwest, carrying the torch of the Southern Gothic literary genre established by such luminaries as Mark Twain, William Faulkner, and Tennessee Williams. Starting with 1965’s The Orchard Keeper, McCarthy’s novels weave dark tales of imperfect main characters who battle the ills of a society in moral decay. His flawed protagonists live through disturbing situations as the author searches for wisdom in the eye of life’s most tempestuous storms.

After publishing memorable early works such as Outer Dark and Child of God, McCarthy became a literary household name thanks to 1985’s Blood Meridian, a hauntingly bloody romp through America’s frontier. Since then, his literary acclaim has only grown, with masterpieces such as All the Pretty HorsesNo Country for Old Men (its subsequent film adaptation won Best Picture in 2008), and his post-apocalyptic novel The Road, which earned the then-73-year-old author a Pulitzer Prize.

Now 89 years old, McCarthy isn’t done yet. Sixteen years after The Road, the author is back with two new books: The Passenger, published in October 2022, and its companion novel, Stella Maris, due to be released on December 6. Like so much of McCarthy’s work, they shine a light on the hard truths that lurk in shadowy recesses of the human experience. These 14 beautiful if haunting lines from McCarthy novels show that by facing the darker side of life, we can learn to travel a more righteous path.

You never know what worse luck your bad luck has saved you from.
— “No Country for Old Men”

Scars have the strange power to remind us that our past is real.
— “All the Pretty Horses”

You forget what you want to remember, and you remember what you want to forget.
— “The Road”

Fathers are always forgiven. In the end they are forgiven. Had it been women who dragged the world through these horrors there would be a bounty on them.
— “The Passenger”

If trouble comes when you least expect it then maybe the thing to do is to always expect it.
— “The Road”

How does a man decide in what order to abandon his life?
— “No Country for Old Men”

Hard people make hard times.
— “Outer Dark”

At one time in the world there were woods that no one owned.
— “Child of God”

If the rule you followed brought you to this, of what use was the rule?
— “No Country for Old Men”

I got what I needed instead of what I wanted and that’s just about the best kind of luck you can have.
— “The Sunset Limited”

It is personal. That’s what an education does. It makes the world personal.
— “The Sunset Limited”

Just remember that the things you put into your head are there forever.
— “The Road”

And in the dream I knew that he was goin on ahead and that he was fixin to make a fire somewhere out there in all that dark and all that cold and I knew that whenever I got there he would be there.
— “No Country for Old Men”

Keep a little fire burning; however small, however hidden.
— “The Road”

Categories: Articole de interes general

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