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Famous Like Me > Writer > M > Cormac McCarthy

Profile of Cormac McCarthy on Famous Like Me

Name: Cormac McCarthy  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 20th July 1933
Place of Birth: Providence, Rhode Island, USA
Profession: Writer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
Date of Birth: July 20, 1933
Place of Birth: Providence, Rhode Island

(1) Lee Holleman, (1961) divorced
(2) Annie DeLisle, (1967 - divorced 1981)
(3) Jennifer Winkley


Cullen McCarthy, son (with Lee Holleman)
John McCarthy, son (with Jennifer Winkley)

Profession: Writer

Cormac McCarthy (born as Charles McCarthy, July 20, 1933 in Providence, Rhode Island) is an American novelist, author of nine Southern Gothic and Western novels. He lives in the Tesuque area of Santa Fe, New Mexico with his wife, Jennifer Winkley and their son John.

Literary critic Harold Bloom has named him as one of the four major American novelists of his time, along with Thomas Pynchon, Don DeLillo, and Philip Roth. He is frequently compared by modern reviewers to William Faulkner and, less often, Herman Melville.

McCarthy's family moved to Knoxville in 1937, and McCarthy spent some time at the University of Tennessee and in the US Air Force in the 1950s before eventually marrying and settling in Tennessee. He published his first novel, The Orchard Keeper, in 1965. It was followed by Outer Dark, Child of God and Suttree. These early works were all set in southern Appalachia.

In the mid-1970s McCarthy moved to El Paso, Texas, and 1985's Blood Meridian, Or the Evening Redness in the West found the author switching the setting of his books to the Southwestern US. Often regarded as McCarthy's finest work by his fans, the novel tells the story of a teenager who finds himself riding with a vicious gang of outlaws who are being paid by the Mexican government to bring back Indian scalps. The book unflinchingly depicts horrific acts of violence committed by Americans, Indians and Mexicans alike. Critics have noted strong gnostic elements in Blood Meridian.

Despite several awards and a number of positive reviews, McCarthy was not widely read until the publication of his sixth novel, All the Pretty Horses (1992). The book, the first part of what McCarthy calls "the Border trilogy," spent some time on bestseller lists and won the National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award. It was later made into a film. The Crossing (1994) and Cities of the Plain (1998) rounded out the trilogy.

In July 2005, McCarthy published his ninth book, No Country for Old Men, a dark work set in Texas in 1980. William J. Cobb, in a review published in the Houston Chronicle (July 15, 2005), characterizes McCarthy as "our greatest living writer" and describes the book as "a heated story that brands the reader's mind as if seared by a knife heated upon campfire flames." On the other hand, in the July 24, 2005, issue of the New York Times Book Review, the critic and fiction writer Walter Kirn suggests that the novel's plot is "sinister high hokum," but writes admiringly of the prose, describing the author as "a whiz with the joystick, a master-level gamer who changes screens and situations every few pages."

McCarthy guards his privacy closely and rarely gives interviews. He remains active in the academic community of Santa Fe, and spends much of his time at the Santa Fe Institute, which was founded by his friend Murray Gell-Mann. They met through the MacArthur Foundation, and McCarthy even line-edited the manuscript for Gell-Mann's book "The Quark and the Jaguar" (1994) (but Gell-Mann was too rushed and disorganized to take advantage of the suggestions.)

McCarthy uses a blue Olivetti Lettera 32 portable typewriter when writing.

B.R. Myers attacked McCarthy, among other contemporary authors, in "A Reader's Manifesto".


  • The Orchard Keeper (1965)
  • Outer Dark (1968)
  • Child of God (1974)
  • Suttree (1979)
  • Blood Meridian, Or the Evening Redness in the West (1985)
  • All the Pretty Horses (1992)
  • The Crossing (1994)
  • Cities of the Plain (1998)
  • No Country for Old Men (2005)

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Cormac McCarthy