Blood Meridian

Cormac McCarthy

Illustrated by Gérard DuBois

Multi-layered, violent and beautiful, Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian is a modern classic justly celebrated in this Folio Society edition, illustrated by award-winning artist Gérard DuBois.

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‘A bloody and starkly beautiful tale.’
  1. The Sunday Times

Brutal and bleak; unique and compelling, Blood Meridian is widely regarded as Cormac McCarthy’s magnum opus, and one of the greatest American novels of all time. An epic western, it explores the spiralling violence suffered by Americans and Indians along the Texas-Mexican border in the mid-19th century. The disregard for life and law on both sides is a reflection on humanity’s destiny, and who among us might control its fate. Having illustrated our best-selling edition of McCarthy’s The Road, artist Gérard DuBois confronts the relentless savagery with surprising grace in his emotive illustrations, while his binding design leaves no doubt as to the hard-hitting nature of the book.

Bound in printed and blocked paper

Set in Maxime

320 pages

Black & white illustrated title-page spread plus 6 colour illustrations

Plain slipcase

9˝ x 5¾˝

‘Unlike anything I have read in recent years, an extraordinary, breathtaking achievement.’
  1. John Banville

French artist Gérard DuBois’s heart-wrenching illustrations in The Road define our stunning edition and his work will undoubtedly do the same for Blood Meridian. This, the only illustrated edition in print, includes six colour illustrations, which are shockingly violent yet beautiful in their composition and memorable for the meaning they convey. A striking black-and-white title-page illustration is a fitting visual introduction to the narrative, with the horror of death belied by the calm countenance of the young soldier who could almost be mistaken for sleeping.

A modern masterpiece that defies categorisation, Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian is essential reading. At heart a western, it also draws on far older literary traditions, namely The Odyssey and The Iliad, in which man’s place in the universe is questioned and his fate determined. The violence is immediate and appalling, the detail graphic and, at times, difficult to read. And yet in the context of the era and the settings, it is not gratuitous. Rather, McCarthy’s fully formed characters and lyrical prose convey poignancy and prompt contemplation. Based on historical events surrounding the notorious scalp-hunting Glanton Gang, the novel focuses on the endless cycle of attack and retribution, as white Americans try to decimate the indigenous population, both sides indiscriminate in their bloodletting.

About Cormac McCarthy

Cormac McCarthy was born in Rhode Island in 1933. He later went to Chicago, where he worked as a mechanic while writing his first novel, The Orchard Keeper, which was published in 1965. After several years touring Europe and then living in Tennessee, in the late 1970s McCarthy moved to Texas, and in 1979 published his fourth novel, Suttree, a book that had occupied his writing life on and off for 20 years. He received a MacArthur Fellowship in 1981, and published his fifth novel, Blood Meridian in 1985 (Folio 2022). All the Pretty Horses, the first volume of the 'Border Trilogy', was published in 1992. It won both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award and was later turned into a feature film. After concluding the 'Border Trilogy', McCarthy's next novel, No Country for Old Men, was published in 2005. This was followed in 2006 by a novel in dramatic form, The Sunset Limited, originally performed by Steppenwolf Theatre Company of Chicago. The Road (2006; Folio 2021) won the Pulitzer Prize. McCarthy died in June 2023.

About Gérard DuBois

Gérard DuBois was born in France in 1968, studied graphic design in Paris and then crossed the Atlantic to live in Montreal. His illustrations have appeared in major North American and European publications, among them the New York Times, Time, Newsweek, GQ, Rolling Stone, New Yorker and Playboy, as well as in more than 20 books. His acrylic pieces are to be found in many private collections, including those of Stephen King and Guillermo del Toro, and Canada Post included his artwork in its 2018 Great Canadian Illustrators stamp series. His work for the Folio Society includes illustrations for Italo Calvino’s Italian Folktales (2019), and Cormac McCarthy’s The Road (2021), Blood Meridian (2022) and No Country for Old Men (2023). DuBois’s many garlands include the Hamilton King Award, four gold medals from the Society of Illustrators and the Moira Gemmel Illustrator of the Year prize at the 2022 V&A Illustration Awards for his work on the Folio Society edition of The Road.


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