The Sunset Limited

Cormac McCarthy

04 February 2011
160 pages


Deft, spare, and full of artful tension, The Sunset Limited is a beautifully crafted play from the legendary Cormac McCarthy, author of No Country for Old Men and Blood Meridian.

'The Sunset Limited grips from the very first page' – Financial Times

A startling encounter on a New York subway platform leads two strangers to a run-down tenement where a life or death decision must be made.

In that small apartment the two men, known as 'Black' and 'White', begin a conversatino that leads each back through his own history.

White is a professor whose seemingly enviable existence of relative ease has left him nonetheless in despair. Black, an ex-con in recovery for drug addiction, is the more hopeful of the men. He is, however, desperate to convince White of the power of faith – while White is desperate to deny it.

Between them, they hope to discover the meaning of life itself.

Praise for Cormac McCarthy:

‘McCarthy worked close to some religious impulse, his books were terrifying and absolute’ – Anne Enright, author of The Green Road and The Wren, The Wren

'His prose takes on an almost biblical quality, hallucinatory in its effect and evangelical in its power' – Stephen King, author of The Shining and the Dark Tower series

'[I]n presenting the darker human impulses in his rich prose, [McCarthy] showed readers the necessity of facing up to existence' – Annie Proulx, author of Brokeback Mountain

The Sunset Limited grips from the very first page.
The author at his best, meditating on life, suffering and religion.
It's remarkable that Cormac McCarthy could revive the antique genre of the philosophical dialogue as convincingly as he does here. His prose bites.