Manuel Broncano's Religion in Cormac McCarthy's Fiction: Apocryphal Borderlands is a fine scholarly work with a rather misleading title. One naturally expects to find a study of the influences of the major world religions on the works of Cormac McCarthy, with a foray into their heretical and apocryphal counterparts; if one is looking for such a book, this is not it. Broncano does not engage in an in-depth theological study, nor touch on any religion other than Christianity, but he does present his readers with a successful historical, sociopolitical, and heavily postmodern reading, which occasionally draws on Biblical influences—an approach that certainly has its place in the field of McCarthy criticism.

Broncano sets himself a difficult task right at the beginning of his book by declaring McCarthy an agnostic and then puzzlingly proceeding to argue that his novels are deeply rooted in Biblical themes and motifs. In fact, his entire...

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