Customer Reviews for

No Country for Old Men

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Gory, Intense, Engrossing, and Beautiful. Those are the first wo

Gory, Intense, Engrossing, and Beautiful. Those are the first words coming to mind when I hear No Country For Old Men by Cormac McCarthy. This novel is near perfect. Cormac’s unique writing style suits the book entirely well and does the story itself justice. Aside from...
Gory, Intense, Engrossing, and Beautiful. Those are the first words coming to mind when I hear No Country For Old Men by Cormac McCarthy. This novel is near perfect. Cormac’s unique writing style suits the book entirely well and does the story itself justice. Aside from the superb writing, the story is entrancing and entertaining. The non-stop action and bizarre protagonists can keep even the smallest attention span intrigued. Lleweyn Moss finds millions of dollars in the desert and decides to keep it for himself. Little does he know that the most brilliant hit man in the entire south is right on his tail. Moss tries to keep his wife and the money safe at the same time, although has trouble juggling the two. We find Moss often times trying to find unique contortions and contraptions to hide the money but this brutal hit man isn’t falling for any of it, killing almost everyone he comes in contact with in order to obtain his prize. Alongside This hit man is the entire Mexican drug cartel, striving to conceive this case of money. Moss has a run in with all of these people and continues to survive these intense scuffles but when he realizes he has to leave the sate is when he also realizes that his luck may be running out. Detective Bell, a long time Sherriff in a small county in Texas is on these men’s tail also trying to get to the bottom of all the murders and guns fired in his once small, peaceful community. A true tail of cat and mouse that will have you biting your nails to the last flip of the page. Get ready for some late nights because it will be very hard for you to put down this book until you have turned all 350 pages of this seemingly easy read. 5 stars. Fantastic.

posted by Anonymous on September 16, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

No Reason to Read this Old Book

As a regional writer('Esther's Race', Cloquet River Press, 2007 ISBN 97809792175001), I am always willing to learn from a master. So when all the accolades came down from on high about Mr. McCarthy's billiant prose, I had to pick up something he'd written and give it a ...
As a regional writer('Esther's Race', Cloquet River Press, 2007 ISBN 97809792175001), I am always willing to learn from a master. So when all the accolades came down from on high about Mr. McCarthy's billiant prose, I had to pick up something he'd written and give it a go. So I trundled off to my local indie bookstore and bought a copy of 'No Country', thinking that I was going to be in for a treat. Wrong, wrong, wrong. What I got was a book long on senseless violence and sociopathic brooding with none of the poinancy of say, 'Silence of the Lambs.' The story moves along as if the ultimate goal is to dishearten and disgust, not tantalize and excite. I for one can get plenty depressed and morose for a lot less money--by reading the daily newspaper--rather than wasting days and dollars on a novel that would have been rejected by any publisher but for the author's name attached to it. To be fair, I didn't want my first and only exposure to McCarthy's writing to be based upon this piece of tripe so I did the unthinkable and went back to the same bookstore and bought a copy of 'The Road.' Now that, ladies and gentlemen, is a fine novel. Written in starkness and with all the bleak shades of gray that McCarthy should have used in 'Old Men' (where the only color of the rainbow is black) had he seen fit to write something worthy of posterity. 'The Road' is everything that 'Old Men' isn't: beautifully written, gloriously themed and supremely plotted. 'The Road' is like the best of Neil Young's music--stark, mystical yet heartfelt. In comparison,'Old Men' reads like purposeless heavy metal noise.

posted by Anonymous on March 13, 2008

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  • Posted January 14, 2015

    McCarthy tells the story of several lives that interact because

    McCarthy tells the story of several lives that interact because Moss, a Vietnam Vet, while out hunting comes upon a drug deal gone bad and takes a case of money.  He ends up pursued by drug dealers, the law and a philosophical killer named Chigurh.  

    The story moves quickly and the bodies pile up.  Woven throughout are the thoughts of Bell, the Sheriff who investigates the whole thing and tries to help Moss.  Bell reflects on his life and how the world has changed as he finds himself always two steps behind and unable to do what he sees as his job.  

    The prose is tight, moves quickly, and the dialog helps build the characters.  (I listened to the audio version and the narration was well done, just adjusting enough for each character to be distinct.)   Chigurh is creepy and yet intense in his own philosophical outlook on life and death.  Moss is sympathetic and Bell holds it all together.  McCarthy doesn't write happy endings, but it is a good story that questions the ideas of honor, and luck, and how personal codes can drive individuals to extremes that end up lead to a sense of inevitability .

    McCarthy intersperses Bell's first person thoughts with the third person narration of the remainder of the book.  Even the narrative distance moves in and out depending on who the focus is - Chigurh most distant, while Moss and Bell are in tight, giving a sense of connection that adds to the strange, frightening sense of doom that Chigurh brings.  

    Overall, I enjoyed the book and having seen the movie years ago, will say that the film managed to bring a difficult story to the screen.  

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2014

    Lorrie

    Sometimes hard to follow, but enjoyed the story

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  • Posted May 30, 2014

    If I ever decide to sneeze sawdust and spit nails, I might just

    If I ever decide to sneeze sawdust and spit nails, I might just have to change my name to Anton Chigurh and move my wife to the Texas-Mexico border. Of course, that assumes I own a cattle gun, determine fate through the flip of a coin, and have approximately $2.4M stuffed in my jeans. During my subsequent relocation, I’ll acquire a pair of recently shined ostrich boots and a white cloth for my boots and nose, not to be used successively without prior washing.

    NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN caused me to jump at even the slightest noise, and I might have pried my eyes open with toothpicks to help me sleep at night. The journey nearly led to a forty mph drive by through a stop sign, and I might have run a red light during the completion of this novel. The prose popped my nose and jaw out of alignment, and I might have hugged the sidewalk for warmth and comfort and moral support. Had I owned a shotgun, I might have tossed it out of my bedroom window (unloaded of course) and buried the shells in my backyard.

    The sparse prose rocked me more than the San Andreas, and I might have considered a four-wheeler purchase to aid my night travels. I’d remove the toothpicks from my eyes for the completion of this journey. The dialogue confused me at times, since I’m a simple man who prefers quotation marks and contractions with the aid of an apostrophe. But that could just be me. Who needs grammar rules if you have a Pulitzer swinging from your gun belt? I ask you. Since I own neither a Pulitzer (unless you count the one I stole from that bastard from Kentucky) nor a gun belt, I guess I’ll have to continue to use punctuation correctly. But when I do acquire my Pulitzer through legal means, you bastards better watch out.

    If you like your world filled with reprehensible characters and you want to watch as the world gets blown to smithereens, or maybe just the backseat of a Jeep, then this novel might just make you feel all warm and cuddly inside.

    Robert Downs
    Author of Falling Immortality: Casey Holden, Private Investigator

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 28, 2010

    pause the movie..read the book

    good book ....way better than the movie

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  • Posted April 17, 2010

    Fast easy read

    This book is a great weekend book. It is a very fast moving thriller. Easy to follow the different characters. Not sure what the murder weapon was until almost the end.

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  • Posted July 6, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    gritty...

    "A harrowing story of a war that society is waging on itself, and an enduring meditation on the ties of love and blood and duty that inform lives and shape destinies, No Country for Old Men is a novel of extraordinary resonance and power. " -synopsis from Barnes&Noble

    No Country for Old Men is the tale of Llewelyn Moss. A "good old boy" who runs across a drug deal gone bad near the Mexican-American border. He takes the money that he finds which sets a course for him that even he couldn't predict.

    No Country for Old Men is also the tale of Anton Chigurh. Chigurh is an extremely violent and sociopathic killer who is on the hunt for Moss and the stolen money. He is one of the most interesting antagonists I've read lately.

    No Country for Old Men is finally the tale of Sheriff Bell who is on the hunt for Chigurh. Bell is the first to realize how badly Moss and his young wife need protection. He sees first hand the piles of bodies left in the wake of Chigurh.

    The book is written in a way that alternates between a third person and the first person of Sheriff Bell reminiscing about his time in WWII. No Country for Old Men is a gritty, fast-paced novel with an antagonist not soon forgotten.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2008

    SWEEEEEEEET!!!!!!!!

    This book is fantastic. If anyone sees any bad comments about his book...ignore them. This book is great if you love this genre. My only bad comment is it is a little hard to know whose saying what in conversations, unless you've seen the movie several times. GO MCARTHY!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2008

    Too True ..........sorry to say

    I am a reader of McCarthy books, which were usually easy for me to follow. But this one really takes you for a ride. You have to read it intently and not lose your trend of thought or you won't know what's going on. However, really getting involved is not hard to do with this story. It tells true of the maniacs out there that kill without the blink of an eye. We're reading about it all the time in the news, almost always when drugs are involved. And when you get nosey and, especially, greedy you set yourself up to fail. And Llewlyn Moss sure sets himself up for that. He's typical of a lot of people. Your so sure you can get away with it that you'll try some real stupid things until you're so involved you can't stop even if you want to. A real good story, but not for those that get easily upset.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2008

    A very good book

    Though a little slow at times, I often found myself unable to put it down. A very strong effect by Mr. McCarthy. I saw the movie when it come out and was really one of the best screen adaption i have seen so hats of to the Coen Brothers but you should definitely read the book first as in any movie they leave some parts of the story and make a few changes here and there. Has the ability to go down as a book to be read for many many years.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2007

    No country for old men

    This book was oddly written. I haven't read many McCarthy books, but evidentually all his books have no quotation marks and their hard to follow. This was the only problem i had with this book. Yes, a lot is left open with the plot but I can understand that. The quotation however is a problem. Some parts are hard to follow dialouge. He also overly uses the word 'and' which kinda gets annoying. Comas work miracles.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2008

    A reviewer

    This book was somewhat troubling because of the issues it deals with. Lots of violence. The problem of drug running and the sad consequences that come from that are brought home. Makes you feels sorry for the law enforcement community. Very thought provoking book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2007

    GOOD!

    To be honest I developed an interest in wanting to read this book, only after seeing the movie trailer. I bought this book on a Saturday, and finished all of it by Sunday evening. The writing is OUTSTANDING! I really enjoyed the frustration of Bell, and how each character kept trying to find a way to accept their Past, and the way there lives had turned out. The only disappointment I had was with what happened with Moss. I felt a little cheated...script wise. But Cormac McCarthy had other things in mind..and the conclusion will not disappoint! I Highly Recommend this Novel!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2007

    old Texas, old men

    Slightly difficult to follow, this novel moves very quicly betwween sites, characters, and story lines, but the characterizations are excellent. The smells the views and the people are all Texas.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2006

    Great book, tense, exciting, however...

    When I got this book, I read it faster than any book I've read in recent history. We all know that the author has great prose and I like the way he brought it into a closer to present day atmosphere. The characters are infinitely interesting and it leaves you waiting for the next chapter to find out more about who they are and what they will do. The action was fast paced and it had some really interesting turns, however...he left way too much on the table with not only the story ending but the characters themselves. Overall though, I highly recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2006

    Easier and Better than Blood Meridian

    McCarthy can be difficult to read with his lack of punctuation, but his stories are incredible. I read this book in one sitting it kept me so entertained. Easy reading and good action keep the pace flowing. Ending is kind of lame or it would be 5-stars. Maybe a sequel for the main assassin?!?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2006

    In character

    McCarthy's books set up unanswered questions for the reader to ponder long after the book is put down. No Country is unresolved. I believe intentionally so. McCarthy's take on America is interesting: An exceedingly violent past is how he once termed it in an interview. His outlook on human nature likewise tends toward violence. Bell, despite faults, has a clear and steady moral compass. Moss has a compromised moral compass. Chigurgh has no moral compass. Of the three, however, Chigurgh is the least conflicted. Bell is the most conflicted. Yet none of them are entirely in control of their destiny as timing and chance provide and take away for each. Serendipity, with choice of action based upon chosen values, links the protaganists. Moss' father tells Bell, in speaking of his son's past in Vietnam: 'People will tell you that it was Vietnam that brought this county to its knees. But I never believed that. It was already in bad shape. Vietnam was just the icin on the cake. We didnt have nothin to give to give em to take over there. If we'd sent em without rifles I dont know as they'd of been worse off. You cant go to war like that. You cant go to war without God. I dont know what is goin to happen when the next one comes. I surely dont.' The book ends with Bell musing on the craftmanship of a hand carved water trough. Can we as a people survive our propensity for violence without a strong values and morality? Where is the desire to leave something of merit and quality which will out last our time? Old men recognise time is short and strip away artifice. Old men come to know what they can and cannot control. Old men hold old fashioned values. Is this still a Country for them?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2005

    Society Is So Different Now: Old Men Can't Understand It

    Cormac McCarthy has written an engrossing, modern, chase thriller in which a savvy ex-Vietnam sniper/hunter tries to elude a clever, amoral killer. The killer is after the $2.4M that the hunter chanced upon in the wreckage of a drug deal gone bad in the desert. The setting is the same west Texas country that McCarthy described in 'All the Pretty Horses'. What tranforms this book into a great American novel is aging Sheriff Bell, whose reflections and reminiscences reveal an American society that in the 40 years since WW II has changed into a society without respect for tradition, without belief in God or anything else, without character, or self confidence. I think Sheriff Bell probably speaks for McCarthy himself. I would have given the book 5 stars except that the ending leaves some fundamental issues unresolved. I think McCarthy must be planning a sequel. Basically, I loved the book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2005

    Where Manners End in Death

    In three days I gobbled up the first copy I could get my hands on. Great read and lots of anticipation and action, but not nearly the depth of poetry and prose found in earlier novels. Of course, those masterpieces would be hard to follow, even for the master Cormac is.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 26, 2005

    McCarthy writes a scorcher!!

    I managed to get my hands on an Advanced Reader Copy of the new book!! It reads like a house a-fire!! I was a little disappointed with the way the main character was treated at the end (I sure would like to see the 1st draft!!) but overall the much anticipated latest from this great writer was a marvelous read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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