The Crossing (The Border Trilogy, Book 2)

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9780679760849: The Crossing (The Border Trilogy, Book 2)
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In The Crossing, Cormac McCarthy fulfills the promise of All the Pretty Horses and at the same time give us a work that is darker and more visionary, a novel with the unstoppable momentum of a classic western and the elegaic power of a lost American myth.

In the late 1930s, sixteen-year-old Billy Parham captures a she-wolf that has been marauding his family's ranch.  But instead of killing it, he decides to take it back to the mountains of Mexico.  With that crossing, he begins an arduous and often dreamlike journey into a country where men meet ghosts and violence strikes as suddenly as heat-lightning--a world where there is no order "save that which death has put there."

An essential novel by any measure, The Crossing is luminous and appalling, a book that touches, stops, and starts the heart and mind at once.

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Review:

The opening section of The Crossing, book two of the Border Trilogy, features perhaps the most perfectly realized storytelling of Cormac McCarthy's celebrated career. Like All the Pretty Horses, this volume opens with a teenager's decision to slip away from his family's ranch into Mexico. In this case, the boy is Billy Parham, and the catalyst for his trip is a wolf he and his father have trapped, but that Billy finds himself unwilling to shoot. His plan is to set the animal loose down south instead.

This is a McCarthy novel, not Old Yeller, and so Billy's trek inevitably becomes more ominous than sweet. It boasts some chilling meditations on the simple ferocity McCarthy sees as necessary for all creatures who aim to continue living. But Billy is McCarthy's most loving--and therefore damageable--character, and his story has its own haunted melancholy.

Billy eventually returns to his ranch. Then, finding himself and his world changed, he returns to Mexico with his younger brother, and the book begins meandering. Though full of hypnotically barren landscapes and McCarthy's trademark western-gothic imagery (like the soldier who sucks eyes from sockets), these latter stages become tedious at times, thanks partly to the female characters, who exist solely as ghosts to haunt the men.

But that opening is glorious, and the whole book finally transcends its shortcomings to achieve a grim and poignant grandeur. --Glen Hirshberg

From the Publisher:

When I first joined the Audio division two years ago, the first two AudioBooks I listed to were All the Pretty Horses and The Crossing. There were two reasons behind this selection - 1) Cormac McCarthy's prose 2) Brad Pitt's voice.

Brad Pitt has a voice that melts ice. Smooth and with a tinge of Texas makes Cormac McCarthy's Border Trilogy come alive. Bitter, sad, angry, hopeful - these are truly stories well told, and well told out loud.
-Carrie, Random House AudioBooks Publicity

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780394574752: The Crossing

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  0394574753 ISBN 13:  9780394574752
Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf, 1994
Hardcover

9780330511247: The Crossing (Border Trilogy)

Picador, 2009
Softcover

9780679760863: The Crossing

Picador, 1995
Softcover

9780330334624: The Crossing

Picador, 1994
Hardcover

9780330341219: The Crossing (Border Trilogy)

Picado..., 2007
Softcover

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Book Description Random House USA Inc, United States, 1995. Paperback. Condition: New. Vintage Intl. Language: English . Brand New Book. Following All the Pretty Little Horses in Cormac McCarthy s Border Trilogy is a novel whose force of language is matched only by its breadth of experience and depth of thought. In the bootheel of New Mexico hard on the frontier, Billy and Boyd Parham are just boys in the years before the Second World War, but on the cusp of unimaginable events. First comes a trespassing Indian and the dream of wolves running wild amongst the cattle lately brought onto the plain by settlers - this when all the wisdom of trappers has disappeared along with the trappers themselves. And so Billy sets forth at the age of sixteen on an unwitting journey into the souls of boys and animals and men. Having trapped a she-wolf he would restore to the mountains of Mexico, he is long gone and returns to find everything he left behind transformed utterly in his absence. Except his kid brother, Boyd, with whom he strikes out yet again to reclaim what is theirs - thus crossing into that antique gaze from whence there could be no way back forever. What they find instead, singly and together, is in extraordinary panoply of fiestas and circuses, dogs and horses and hawks, pilgrims and revolutionaries, grand haciendas and forlorn cantinas, bandits and gypsies and roving tribes, a young girl alone on the road, a mystery in the mountain wilds, and a myth in the making. And in this wider world they fight a war as rageful as the one neither, in the end, will join up for back home. One brother finds his destiny, while the other arrives only at his fate. An essential novel by any measure, and the transfixing middle passage of Cormac McCarthy s ongoing trilogy, The Crossing is luminous and appalling, a book that touches, stops,and starts the heart and mind at once. Seller Inventory # ABZ9780679760849

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