Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian, Illustrated


Drawing comparisons to both Dante’s Inferno and Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian is a work of genuine madness, and one of the most violent books in contemporary literature. Zak Smith (who previously illustrated each page of Gravity’s Rainbow), and five other artists (Sean McCarthy, John Mejias, Craig Taylor, Shawn Cheng, and Matt Wiegle) have taken on the daunting task of illustrating every page of the grizzly tale. The styles range from hauntingly vivid to extremely abstract, each image complemented with a quote from the source material that served as its inspiration.

“An enormous man dressed in an oilcloth slicker had entered the tent and removed his hat. He was bald as a stone and he had no trace of beard and he had no brows to his eyes nor lashes to them.”

“042: Dawn saw them deployed in a long file over the plain…”

“He took off the shirt. It stuck to the skin and a yellow pus ran. His arm was swollen to the size of his thigh and it was garishly discolored and small worms worked in the open wound.”

“…the bull had planted its feet and it lifted the animal rider and all clear of the ground…”

“…great handfuls of viscera, genitals…and sodomized them with loud cries to their fellows.”

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