I've waited a few days after finishing to write something about this book, hoping to achieve a fair and balanced opinion of this Pulitzer-prize winning novel.
And trying to figure out WHY it won said prize.
I think it's a Harry Potter thing. I may have mentioned this before, but a friend told me a story about her non-fantasy-reading friend, who read a Harry Potter novel. Said person was like, "Wow! It was AMAZING! It's like the author created a Whole Different World!" The concept had never occurred to her, let alone that there's a whole genre of novels that "create whole new worlds."
Likewise, I think the people that are impressed by "The Road" have probably never read a post-apocalyptic novel.
Maybe it's just that I read the 1965 novel by John Christopher "The Ragged Edge" just a couple of months ago, and it's fresh in my mind... but, IMHO, "The Road" verges on plagiarism. It's the SAME EXACT STORY. OK, so "The Road" takes place a little bit further after the disaster, and the kid travelling with the man through the post-apocalyptic wasteland is his biological son, not an adopted orphan, and "The Ragged Edge" has a few more characters thrown in. But they've even got nearly the same scene on a ship! How likely is that?
Basically, I think Cormac McCarthy probably read the other novel at some point, said, "I can do this better," and threw in some religious allegory, made it clear that Man was responsible for the disaster (although that's hardly original, either), and wrote it in poetic language. But you know what? I LIKE full sentences and punctuation. OK, occasionally sentence fragments can be used effectively. But the whole book is sentence fragments! And leaving out apostrophes from contractions is just distracting, annoying, and serves no poetic purpose.
Ah well; I am sure many readers out there will disagree with me, but that's my honest opinion!