Hot Best Seller

The Stand: The Complete and Uncut Edition

Availability: Ready to download

Stephen King’s apocalyptic vision of a world blasted by plague and tangled in an elemental struggle between good and evil remains as riveting and eerily plausible as when it was first published. A patient escapes from a biological testing facility, unknowingly carrying a deadly weapon: a mutated strain of super-flu that will wipe out 99 percent of the world’s population wit Stephen King’s apocalyptic vision of a world blasted by plague and tangled in an elemental struggle between good and evil remains as riveting and eerily plausible as when it was first published. A patient escapes from a biological testing facility, unknowingly carrying a deadly weapon: a mutated strain of super-flu that will wipe out 99 percent of the world’s population within a few weeks. Those who remain are scared, bewildered, and in need of a leader. Two emerge—Mother Abagail, the benevolent 108-year-old woman who urges them to build a peaceful community in Boulder, Colorado; and Randall Flagg, the nefarious “Dark Man,” who delights in chaos and violence. As the dark man and the peaceful woman gather power, the survivors will have to choose between them—and ultimately decide the fate of all humanity.

*advertisement

Compare

Stephen King’s apocalyptic vision of a world blasted by plague and tangled in an elemental struggle between good and evil remains as riveting and eerily plausible as when it was first published. A patient escapes from a biological testing facility, unknowingly carrying a deadly weapon: a mutated strain of super-flu that will wipe out 99 percent of the world’s population wit Stephen King’s apocalyptic vision of a world blasted by plague and tangled in an elemental struggle between good and evil remains as riveting and eerily plausible as when it was first published. A patient escapes from a biological testing facility, unknowingly carrying a deadly weapon: a mutated strain of super-flu that will wipe out 99 percent of the world’s population within a few weeks. Those who remain are scared, bewildered, and in need of a leader. Two emerge—Mother Abagail, the benevolent 108-year-old woman who urges them to build a peaceful community in Boulder, Colorado; and Randall Flagg, the nefarious “Dark Man,” who delights in chaos and violence. As the dark man and the peaceful woman gather power, the survivors will have to choose between them—and ultimately decide the fate of all humanity.

30 review for The Stand: The Complete and Uncut Edition

  1. 5 out of 5

    Kemper

    You know what’s really scary? Getting sick while you’re reading the first part of The Stand. Just try running a fever, going through a box of tissues and guzzling the better part of a bottle of NyQuil while Stephen King describes the grisly deaths of almost every one on Earth from a superflu. On top of feeling like crap, you'll be terrified. Bonus! After a bio-engineered virus that acts like a revved up cold escapes from a U.S. government lab, it takes only weeks for almost all of humanity to suc You know what’s really scary? Getting sick while you’re reading the first part of The Stand. Just try running a fever, going through a box of tissues and guzzling the better part of a bottle of NyQuil while Stephen King describes the grisly deaths of almost every one on Earth from a superflu. On top of feeling like crap, you'll be terrified. Bonus! After a bio-engineered virus that acts like a revved up cold escapes from a U.S. government lab, it takes only weeks for almost all of humanity to succumb to the disease. A handful of survivors are mysteriously immune and begin having strange dreams, some of which are about a very old woman called Mother Abigail asking them to come see her. More disturbing are nightmares about a mysterious figure named Randall Flagg also known as the Dark Man or the Walkin’ Dude. As they make their way through an America almost entirely devoid of people, the survivors begin to unite and realize that the flu was just the beginning of their problems. While some are drawn to the saintly Mother Abigail in Boulder Colorado who tells them that they have been chosen by God, others have flocked to Flagg in Las Vegas who is determined to annihilate all those who refuse to pledge their allegiance to him. If King would have just written a book about a world destroyed by plague and a small number of people struggling in the aftermath, it probably would have been a compelling story. What sets this one apart is the supernatural element. Flagg is the embodiment of evil and chaos. He's a mysterious figure who has been giving the wrong people the push needed for them to make things worse for everyone, and he sees the plague as his chance to fulfill his own destiny as a wrecker of humanity. And on the other side, we have God. Yep, that God. The Big Cheese himself. But this isn’t some kindly figure in a white robe with a white beard or George Burns or Morgan Freeman. This is the Old Testament God who demands obedience and worship while usually rewarding his most faithful servants with gruesome deaths. King calls this a tale of dark Christianity in his forward, and one of the things I love about this book is that it does feel like a Biblical story, complete with contradictions and a moves-in-mysterious-ways factor. Stories don’t get much more epic than this, and King does a great job of depicting the meltdown of the world through the stories of a variety of relateable characters. (Larry Underwood remains among my favorite King creations.) One of my few complaints is that this features a lot of King’s anti-technology themes that he’d use in several books like Cell or The Dark Tower series. We’re told repeatedly that the ‘old ways’ like trying to get the power back on in Boulder are a ‘death trip’. The good guys gather in the Rocky Mountains, but if they try to get the juice going so they won’t freeze to death in the winter, they’re somehow acting in defiance of God’s will and returning to the bad habits? Not all tech is bad tech, Mr. King. Nature is a bitch and will kill your ass quicker than the superflu. Here’s another thing I’m not wild about. When this was published in the late ‘70s, the bean counters at King’s publishers had decided that the book as written would be too pricey in hardback and no one would pay a whopping $13 for a Stephen King hardback. So King cut about three hundred pages. Around 1990 after it had become apparent that King could publish his shopping list as a best seller, he put those pages back in and released the uncut version. Which I’m fine with. The original stuff was cut for a financial reason, not an editorial one, and there’s some very nice bits of story added in. If King would have stopped there, we would have had a great definitive final version as originally created by the author. Unfortunately, he seemed to catch a case of Lucasitis and decided to update the story a bit and change its original time frame from 1980 to 1990. I’m not sure why that seemed necessary to him. Yes, the book was a bit dated by then, but it was of its time. He didn’t rewrite the text (Which I’m grateful for.), but just stuck in some references to Madonna and Ronald Reagan and Spuds McKenzie. This led to a whole bunch of anachronisms. Would students in 1990 call soldiers ’war pigs’? Someone in New York picks up a phone book to look up the number to call an ambulance instead of dialing 911? A song called Baby, Can You Dig Your Man is a huge hit? None of it quite fits together. There's also a layer of male chauvinism and lack of diversity that you can overlook in a book written in the late '70s, but seems out of place for a book set and updated for 1990. The things that irritate me are still far outweighed by one of my favorite stories of an apocalyptic battle between good and evil. I’m also glad to get a long overdue audio edition of this book. Great narration and 40+ hours of end of the world horror make for a damn fine listening experience.

  2. 5 out of 5

    carol.

    Dear Stephen, I'm sorry. I just don't like you in that way. I know we've been friends for a long time, but I just never developed those kind of feelings for you, even after eleven hundred pages. I feel like we only moved forward in fits and stops, and we were just never able to sustain a kind of even-handed development of the kind of chills and thrills a person really likes. Shock someone enough times with snot running out of their nose, and it just becomes a little meaningless. And there are onl Dear Stephen, I'm sorry. I just don't like you in that way. I know we've been friends for a long time, but I just never developed those kind of feelings for you, even after eleven hundred pages. I feel like we only moved forward in fits and stops, and we were just never able to sustain a kind of even-handed development of the kind of chills and thrills a person really likes. Shock someone enough times with snot running out of their nose, and it just becomes a little meaningless. And there are only so many ways to view a dead body before one gets kind of numb instead of apprehensive. Using the journal device to move things forward seems a little crude, when what we really need to do is talk. I have to confess, I've felt kind of uncomfortable watching you struggle with religion and spirituality. You sparked my interest when you posited that this might be the battle between the age of reason and that of "irrationalism," and the dark man was the last vestige of doomed rationalism. I thought for a few minutes we were headed somewhere really special, but you didn't seem very confident, and the theme fell apart. I will say there were a few surprises along the way, which I found pleasant. I appreciate you avoiding the obvious character arcs, especially when it comes to redemption. I was glad to meet most of your friends, especially Joe/Leo, Stu and even Kojak. Your military friends bored me out, though, especially Starkey; I don't even get why you like spending any time with those guys. Such a bunch of fossils. I do have to say, I was really impressed with how you must have studied disease modelling and progression--I almost felt like was there. Sometimes I get the feeling that you don't really see me as a person, just a baby-maker. You even have an extended soliloquy about it, as if I wasn't even here reading your words. It bothers me, because you took the time to develop nuanced male relationships (Larry, Stu, Lloyd), but the women were about reproducing or were cannon fodder. Since you allowed technology to remain, I'm not going to buy into your lowest most-functional society mentality, no matter how many sociological theories you throw at me. And then there's the elderly black woman as representation of all that's spiritual. Perhaps even Mother Earth? If I'm rolling my eyes, it's because it's another aspect of compartmentalizing women as either maiden, matron or crone, and people of color as closer to God(s)(being savage and all, as you so helpfully illustrate in your "The Circle Closes" afterward). Honestly, it's kind of juvenile, and a little disappointing when I know you are capable of so much more. It's time for me to move on. I'm sure you'll find someone special eventually, Stephen, because you are such a really great guy. And so unusual, too. With Three Stars, Your Friend Always. Cross posted at http://clsiewert.wordpress.com/2013/0...

  3. 5 out of 5

    Lyn

    M-O-O-N. That spells “Damn, what a great book!” I knew King had it in him, I am a fan of his brilliant 1977 haunted house thriller The Shining, but I did not expect this. The best post apocalyptic novel ever? Maybe, that is a broad category teaming with great work from talented writers, but King’s The Stand is an epic, genre defining work. My friend Michael has a profile statement, something to the effect of finding our next 5 star rating. I like that sentiment, and am excited by the opportunity th M-O-O-N. That spells “Damn, what a great book!” I knew King had it in him, I am a fan of his brilliant 1977 haunted house thriller The Shining, but I did not expect this. The best post apocalyptic novel ever? Maybe, that is a broad category teaming with great work from talented writers, but King’s The Stand is an epic, genre defining work. My friend Michael has a profile statement, something to the effect of finding our next 5 star rating. I like that sentiment, and am excited by the opportunity that our next favorite book is out there waiting to be read; a new best friend of an author to whom we’ve yet to be introduced. Here’s mine. I’m late to the party, just reading this for the first time in 2015. I think I was always a little intimidated by the length. It’s a beast, and I was a glutton for punishment reading the 1990 extended version, weighing in at a heavyweight 1153 pages. But it’s a runaway train, grabbing the reader up and taking him or her where Stephen King wants to take you. Yes, it’s a book about a devastating plague, but also so, so much more. King weaves in an allegory about the viruses amongst us. There is also the spiritual quality of the book, King shows how we are sinners in the hands of an angry God, and that dreamers will survive – and survivors can still dream. I could not help making a comparison with the Left Behind series, and associating Flagg to Nicholai Carpathia – though King’s characterization is far more complex and well rounded, and like Milton’s Satan, the most interesting character here is the villain. This makes me appreciate his The Gunslinger series and I want to search out Flagg and read more about him. This is also an American epic and in its context an American eulogy. King shows us the good the bad and the ugly of what we are and what we can be. An observant reader will see references to Ursula K. LeGuin (word for world is woods), to Jim Morison, Edgar Allan Poe, Woody Guthrie, and hell even Rod McKuen. I know Mr. King and have enjoyed many of his works and I have now been amazed by his finest.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Emily (Books with Emily Fox)

    Want to catch the flu? Read The Stand. I caught it twice in the month it took me to read this book. Twice! I'm rarely sick so it's clearly a thing. Post-apocalyptic book where most people die from a super flu. That part was my favorite. It then becomes a battle between Good and Evil. Some fantasy elements were included. This part was still solid. I liked how we got to follow the characters and get to know them. I felt some similarities to Station Eleven so if you like The Stand I would give this on Want to catch the flu? Read The Stand. I caught it twice in the month it took me to read this book. Twice! I'm rarely sick so it's clearly a thing. Post-apocalyptic book where most people die from a super flu. That part was my favorite. It then becomes a battle between Good and Evil. Some fantasy elements were included. This part was still solid. I liked how we got to follow the characters and get to know them. I felt some similarities to Station Eleven so if you like The Stand I would give this one a shot too!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin

    Wow!! So I have had this awesome paperback door stopper for some time. (Gift from friend) I decided to get the audio through the library and of course now I have added it to my Audible wishlist. The narration is freaking awesome! The whole damn book is freaking awesome! The thing is, I didn't think I would like it because I barely remember the movie and am not sure I liked it. That was a long time ago and who the hell knows! I'm just extremely happy I finally read it. Yeah! It's long, but most b Wow!! So I have had this awesome paperback door stopper for some time. (Gift from friend) I decided to get the audio through the library and of course now I have added it to my Audible wishlist. The narration is freaking awesome! The whole damn book is freaking awesome! The thing is, I didn't think I would like it because I barely remember the movie and am not sure I liked it. That was a long time ago and who the hell knows! I'm just extremely happy I finally read it. Yeah! It's long, but most books I read or listen to are so that's neither here nor there. I just loved reading about all of the people and events. And I did laugh at times. YES, scary stories do have some comedy at times. Lol. Anyhoo, enjoy peeps!! Happy Reading! Mel 🖤🐾🐺

  6. 5 out of 5

    Delee

    M-O-O-N spells spectacular! I first read THE STAND in the early 80's. It was during the Christmas break- I lived out in the boonies with my family, and after the holiday hoopla was over -I planted myself in my favorite chair and sat there for 4 days devouring every page-(only leaving for bathroom breaks, meals and sleep). 30+ years later my reading experience was a little different. I read it with my Goodreads friend Lisa- who had the uncut version, while I had the original- I stopped and started M-O-O-N spells spectacular! I first read THE STAND in the early 80's. It was during the Christmas break- I lived out in the boonies with my family, and after the holiday hoopla was over -I planted myself in my favorite chair and sat there for 4 days devouring every page-(only leaving for bathroom breaks, meals and sleep). 30+ years later my reading experience was a little different. I read it with my Goodreads friend Lisa- who had the uncut version, while I had the original- I stopped and started as she caught up- there were huge amounts of messages back and forth- on the characters, the differences in editions, who we loved- who we hated, and everything and anything we could think of to discuss. It was a month long read... ...but the one thing both experiences did have in common was- I LOVED IT each time!! At a remote U.S. Army base, a strain of influenza is accidentally released. Despite a lock down- soldier Charles Campion is able to escape with his wife and child. By the time the military is able to track his whereabouts- Campion has spread the disease around parts of Texas- triggering a pandemic which kills off 99 percent of the population. The one percent are left in survival mode- spread out over the entire country and plagued by strange dreams about two individuals which eventually draw some to Nebraska and some to Las Vegas. Hemingford Home, Nebraska- Is the home of Abagail Freemantle— "Mother Abagail" a 108 year- old woman who receives visions from God. She is the embodiment of good. Las Vegas, Nevada- is where Randall Flagg has set up shop- Randall is also called The Dark Man and The Walking Dude. He lives to cause death and destruction and has supernatural powers which allow him to be human, animal or demon. He is the embodiment of evil. King said that he "wanted to write a fantasy epic like The Lord of the Rings, only with an American setting"- and that is just what he did. THE STAND is a wonderful epic fantasy adventure about good vs evil- One that I would recommend to anybody who hasn't read it yet, and even to those who have!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mohammed Arabey

    لماذا تقرأ رواية 1440 صفحة؟ لأنها رواية ستيفين كينج الأطول، لم يلجأ هنا لديستوبيا معلبة مجهزة مسبقا، وحده قادر ببناء واحدة من البداية !لكنها 1440 صفحة لأنها ملحمة ليست خيالية بل معاصرة عن عالمنا..ماذا لو أصابه وباء بيولوجي قضي علي 99% من سكانه !في 1440 صفحة؟ لأنها تصور لآخر الأيام، القيامة، عن المواجهة، الخير ضد الشر .. قل لي هل أنت مستعد لمواجهة المسيخ الدجال حقا؟ !لكنها رواية..وفي 1440 صفحة لأنها 3 روايات بواحدة، تبدأ بمواجهة للنفس البشرية..صراعات نفسية لشخصيات مختلفة تواجه أصعب أيام حياتها تخيل الناج لماذا تقرأ رواية 1440 صفحة؟ لأنها رواية ستيفين كينج الأطول، لم يلجأ هنا لديستوبيا معلبة مجهزة مسبقا، وحده قادر ببناء واحدة من البداية !لكنها 1440 صفحة لأنها ملحمة ليست خيالية بل معاصرة عن عالمنا..ماذا لو أصابه وباء بيولوجي قضي علي 99% من سكانه !في 1440 صفحة؟ لأنها تصور لآخر الأيام، القيامة، عن المواجهة، الخير ضد الشر .. قل لي هل أنت مستعد لمواجهة المسيخ الدجال حقا؟ !لكنها رواية..وفي 1440 صفحة لأنها 3 روايات بواحدة، تبدأ بمواجهة للنفس البشرية..صراعات نفسية لشخصيات مختلفة تواجه أصعب أيام حياتها تخيل الناجين في أرض موتي، جثث بكل مكان..الجميع فقد احباءه ومعارفه..فقد أيمانه... الشدائد كتلك هي ما تظهر معدن البشر نحن من صنعنا الأوبئة الجديدة والأسلحة البيولوجية والجرثومية في المختبرات العسكرية لنستخدمها كسلاح فماذا لو انقلبت ضدنا؟ لقد سبق كينج ساراماجو بسنوات في رسم الفوضي التي تنتج عن وباء مكتسح وتغيرات التي تحدث بنفوس البشر كما أنها عن علم الاجتماع ..وكيف سيكون الناجين مجتمعا من جديد وكيف أننا دائما نكرر أخطائناربما يكون الإنسان قد خلق علي صورة الله، لكن المجتمع البشري خلق علي صورة الشيطان، لكنه دوما يحاول العودة لاصلهبل وبعد النجاة من الموت عليهم مواجهة كبري ...مواجهة الشيطان ، في اختبار اصعبوَلِيُمَحِّصَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَيَمْحَقَ الْكَافِرِينَذلك لأنها أيضا عن فلسفة الإيمان بالله...أو الشيطان !!تبدو لي كرواية تبشيرية دينية..وفي 1440 صفحة لكنها رواية إنسانية، عالمية، كلنا يواجه شياطين نفسه، والاغراءات بالسلطة، الاستحواذ، عدم تحمل المسئولية، حتي فكرة المسيخ الدجال واتباع الشيطان هي أمر ذكر بالأسلام كما المسيحية وله تشابه بكل الاديان وحتي إن لم تكن مؤمنا، فصدقني حتي أبطال الرواية لم يكونوا كذلكالجمال في جنون التدين هو قوته علي تفسير أي شئ. بمجرد قبول أن الله (أو الشيطان) هو المسبب اﻷول في حدوث كل شئ في العالم الفاني، لا شئ يبقي للصدفة..المنطق يمكن ألقاءه من الشباك بسعادةقد يكون فكرة الشيطان والمسيخ الدجال غير منطقية لملحد..لكن الشيطان هنا قد يكون مجرد زعيم، طاغية..محب للسلطة يجمع أتباعه كالأنعام من يهدر المليارات في صناعة الاسلحة النووية ، الجرثومية..وباء ليقتل به غيره لقد كتبها ستيفين كينج بالسبعينات، بعد نهاية حقبة الستينات بمخاوفها وذعرها من حدوث حرب نووية اخري مخيفة بلا معني يضيع بسببها ملايين البشر، وسط اتهامات بتجارب الأسلحة البيلوجية وما أشبه البارحة باليوم !في 1440 صفحة؟ نعم ستيفين كينج ثرثارا بحق..يكثر من وصف الطرق والاشارات للمنتجات الأمريكية والعلامات التجارية من سيارات وحتي الأطعمة المعلبة نعم كثير من السطور كانت حشوا، لم تؤثر في الأحداث بشكل مباشر ولكنه بنفس الوقت يجعلك تعيش وسط الأحداث فهذا التطويل جعلني أجوب الولايات المتحدةالأمريكية من شرقها لغربها أكثر من مرة، كطريق الحج، في ديستوبيا مرعبة مقبضة..عشت بها شهرا في تجربة لن أنسها !بالطبع، أنها 1440 صفحة بحق الله لأن ضخامتها هي سبب جعلها رحلة تعايشها لا تنسي هي أهم أعمال الكينج، ولو انها ليست الأقرب لقلبه ومع ذلك وافق في إعادة نشرها بنسخة أكبر بها كل ما حذفه في وقت نشرها الأول في 1978 وعندما عرفت تلك الأجزاء وجدت أنها ما جعلني من ربع الرواية اﻷول أشعر بقرب أكبر من الشخصيات بالأخص، لاري أندروود وفراني جولدسميث وعمق لشخصياتهما وتطور ملحوظ لهما لاحقا أتعجب من هذا الذي يقرأ نسخة مختصرة من رواية ضخمة ثم يقول لك أن لا تطور بشخصياتها ويكتب عنها مراجعة يهاجمها لكن ما جذبك لتتخلي عن كل الكتب لتستكمل قراءة رواية في 1440 صفحة؟ أعلم أنني لن أقنعك عزيزي القارئ بما يكفي، بل ربما لا أرشح الرواية بقوة كبعض أعمال ستيفين كينج اﻷخري ﻻنها رحلة قد تجد نفسك مجبرا لأستكمالها...أو تتوقف في ربعها الأول وتفضل الرحيل عنها كما من رحل عن الاحداث بسبب "كابتن الترحال"، "الرحالة"، "الإنفلونزا اﻷعظم"، بل وطوال قراءتها ستجد عقبات أشد قد تجعلك ترحل عنها لكنك إن صمدت، حتي المواجهة الوقفة ستجد نفسك شهدت مواجهة عميقة، قوية لها أكثر من بعد ولنر لاستطيع تقييم رحلتي تلك بتقسييم المراجعة للثلاث كتب التي أحتوتها الرواية ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ الكتاب اﻻول : كابتن الترحال من 16 يونيو الي 4 يوليو -480 صفحة فقطهنا كما قلت، ستيفين كينج يبني ديستوبيا من الأساس بعكس كل الروايات الشهيرة الحالية التي تبدأ مثلا في مجتمع تم تدميره من قبل بسبب حرب، كارثة طبيعية، أو بشرية، ربما نووية ، وباء، أو حتي حاكم طاغية مستبد .. كل تلك الروايات التي تبدأ بجو دوستوبيا معلبة، مجهزة مسبقا لكن في هذه الحالة...الوباء المسبب للديستوبيا هو المعبأ والمجهز مسبقا...في مختبرات الاستخبارات العسكرية الأمريكية هنا الرواية تبدأ في أمريكا..التسعينات، تعاني كما الكثير من الدول وقتها ، تعاني كما ستعاني دوما ؛ الازمة الاقتصادية ، التضخم...زيادة السكان وقلة الموارد فأرتفاع الاسعار كالعادة..حزب الديموقراطيين..ألخ ولكن في مختبر عسكري تابع للحكومة الأمريكية يفلت منه فرد أمن بسيط شهد وفاة مفاجأة لكل من بالمعمل علي كاميرات المراقبة بالخارج...ليهرب قبل أن يغلق باب مباني المختبر اوتوماتيكيا بالكامل للاحتواء، و يأخذ عائلته ويرحل عن الولاية بأسرع وقت تصدم سيارته صباح اليوم التالي بمحطة بنزين في الولاية التالية، ولحسن الحظ- أو سوءه- يلحظ ستو ريدمان السيارة المسرعة فيغلق مضخات البنزين بسرعة كي لا تنفجر بالسيارة بالمحطة كلها (ياليتها انفجرت) ، (حقا؟) ومن تلك البلدة الصغيرة، بمقابلة عابرة تلو الاخري يبدأ كابتن الرحلات، الرحالة، الإنفلونزا العظيمة وصف السيد كينج كان كابوسيا هنا لكيف أنتشر المرض، هناك فصول كأنها تروي من منظور الوباء نفسه ولكن بشكل غير مباشر، كيف يقابل شخصا مصاب شخصا اخر سليما، ليذهب لشخص اخر يرتحل لولاية أخري حاملا مرض ينتشر بسهولة في الهواء..بشكل تفصيلي غريب كابوسي وقد يكون بدأ قويا، يقتل في لحظتها، لكن بأنتشاره طالت فترة حضانته...وصار كشفه أصعب فأعراضه أعراض مجرد برد عادي ، برد أول الصيف العتيد، لكنه يتحول لكل مضاعفات البرد والإنفلونزا البشعة حتي يودي بحياة المريض ثم تتطور الامور بسرعة قمع عسكري أعلامي ، مستشفيات تعج بالمرضي والموتي ، فوضي في الأعلام ورعب في الشوارع والجيش يضع حواجز بالطرق بين الولايات التي لا يعرف سكانها إلي أين يفرون من الأساس وقبل أن ينتهي هذا الكتاب الكابوسي (الجزء اﻷول)، يكون قد تم القضاء بنجاح علي 99% من سكان أمريكا وبالتبعية العالم كله -بسبب ذكر عابر أنه أيضا وصل الصين وروسيا-..كابتن الترحال قام برحلات ناجحة بحق ولكن هناك ناجين لم يصبهم الوباء...ولكنهم 1%فحسب وبالطبع لم ينس السيد كينج أضافة فصل قبل نهاية هذا الكتاب عن كيف أن ال1% من السكان الناجين لمناعتهم من الوباء ،قد يلقي ربعهم نحبه بسبب أسباب أخري طبيعية تخيل كل جيرانك وشارعك والحي الذي تقتنه ميتون ببيوتهم أو سياراتهم العالقة في أزدحام مروري لن يفك أبدا، هل سيتحمل عقلك واعصابك؟ طفل رضيع لديه مناعة لن يستفاد بها من ذلك الوباء، سيموت في غضون ساعات وحيدا ذلك الفصل بالاخص كان قاسي ببشاعة ، أسلوب السيد كينج به كان عبقريا ، أضافة عبارة "ليست بالخسارة الكبري" بعد أغلب الوفيات التي نتجت بأسباب غير الوباء أصابتني بالرعشة ، حتي إن كانت عن مدمن هيروين مات بجرعة زائدة لم يجد من يساعده لكن تلك الشخصيات التسع بهذا الفصل والتي تراوحت قصتهم بين صفحة ونصف الي سطر ونصف ليسوا الوحيدين الذين عانوا قسوة السيد كينج بل الشخصيات الرئيسية نفسها التي نجت الوباء أيضا ستشهد قسوة أشد وطرا والتي سنتعرف عنها لاحقا ولكي لا احرق لك مصائر الشخصيات لنر الكتاب الثاني ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ الكتاب الثاني : علي الحدود من 5 يوليو الي 6 سبتمبر - 660 صفحة فقط الأن كل الشخصيات الرئيسية -من مختلف الولايات- بدأت تتحرك من المدن الخاوية الا من جثث الالاف الموتي بكل مدينة لتتجه الي مصيرها ولكن الي اين؟ هذه هي النقطة لا يوجد مجتمع الان ، بل سيتم بناء مجتمع من الاساس من جديد أرني رجلا او امرأة وحدها أريك قديسا. أعطني اﻻثنين وسيقعا في الحب. أعطني ثلاثة وسيخترعوا أمرا ساحرا نسميه ‘مجتمع’. أعطني أربعة وسيبنوا هرما. أعطني خمسة وسيجعلوا أحدهم منبوذا. أعطني ستة وسيعيدوا أختراع العنصرية أعطني سبعة وفي سبع سنين سيعيدوا أختراع الحروب. وهنا يلعب ستيفين كينج لعبة المواجهة النفسية هناك البعض يحلم برجل مظلم ، يمشي في الظلام يسبب برودة وقشعريرة لمن يراه ويحاول ان يجند اتباع له واحيانا تتنتقل الاحلام الي سيدة سوداء عجوز معمرة في مزرعتها تغني طيلة النهار اغاني وابتهالات تبارك الله والغريب ان الجميع يحلم بكلا الشخصيتين ، وكل نفس لها أن تفضل طريقا عن الاخر تفسير جزء الأحلام الجماعية رغم ان بها شئ من الميتافيزيقا "ماوراء الطبيعة" هو أن الأحلام عاما تتأثر بشكل كبير بالوعي الجمعي ، وعندما وصل سكان الارض ل1% فقط فقد كان سهلا التأثر بالاحلام ويتكون ما يشبه حلم جماعي قد يكون الرجل المظلم "راندل فلاج" لأنه تابع للشيطان له بعض القدرات الخارقة للطبيعة لينادي علي اتباع له بالاحلام، ولكن كهبة من الله يحلم البعض ايضا بتلك السيدة العادية، "اﻻم أباجايل" ، المؤمنة فحسب..والتي تشعر أن الله أختارها لتعمر لسبب جاء وقته فتتخذ الأم أباجايل دور أرشاد الناجين الذين سيتوجهوا لها ، حسب رؤياها من الله، للذهاب للغرب للاستقرار بمدينة سيسمونها "المنطقة الحرة" عند شرق جبال روكي بينما يختار الجانب الاخر الذهاب لغرب جبال روكي ، للاس فيجاس نيفادا...لدي رجل الظلام..رجل الشيطان وهنا سيتكون المجتمع، من جديد أو باﻻصح، المجتمعان ونتابع بشكل مرهق وقوي كيف يتقابل شخصيات الكتاب الاول مع شخصيات جديدة علي الطريق ، التحالفات التي تحدث بين الشخصيات ، وتشهد معهم اهوال ما حدث بالولايات الاخري برحلة طريق شاقة عبر الولايات الامريكية وكل شخصية او جماعة حسب وجهتها هنا يقدم ستيفين كينج نقاش مستمر طوال الاحداث هنا عن المجتمعات وتكونها.. كيف قد يكون مجتمع يديره شيطان طاغية يحكم رعاياه بالخوف..ويخطط كل مجهوداته كيف يقضي علي غيره وكيف يمكن ان يظل مجتمعا متشتتا متخبطا برغم من ان نواياه صالحة، ديموقراطي، ولكنه يحاول تنظيم فقط بشكل بيروقراطي تنظيمي عقيم وبأجتماعات لا تنتهي مما قد يؤدي لضعفه بل والاهم كيف يمكن للمجتمع الصالح التجهيز ضد الشيطان؟ العدو الخارجي؟ هل يبدأ ايضا في ارسال جواسيس؟ التحضير ﻻسلحة اخري؟ ربما بيولوحية؟ وباء اخر؟ بل لماذا بعد كل هذه الصعاب (وباء قاتل)..(تذكر ان صنعه البشر بنفسهم)، يظل عليهم مواجهة الشيطان؟؟ هنا نعود للآية التي ذكرتها بأول المراجعة{وَلِيُمَحِّصَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَيَمْحَقَ الْكَافِرِينَ * أَمْ حَسِبْتُمْ أَنْ تَدْخُلُوا الْجَنَّةَ وَلَمَّا يَعْلَمِ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ جَاهَدُوا مِنْكُمْ وَيَعْلَمَ الصَّابِرِينَ} أعترف انني لثاني او ثالث مرة أقوم بأدخال الدين في رواية لستيفين كينج لكن هذا بالظبط شبيه لرد الأم اباجيل علي احد الشخصيات التي أتهمت الذات الإلهية بالظلم لوضع البشر دوما في لعبة شطرنج بين الانسان والشيطان لان الانسان نفسه بداخله نفس الصراع دائما. . ودائما ما يحتاج لمواجهة فكرت الام ان قد يكون هذا حدث ايضا في المجتمع بعد طوفان سيدنا نوح، بالتأكيد كان هناك انقسام اخر بين البشر الناجين وقفة أخري مواجهة مواجهة النفس...مواجهة الشيطان فحتي في مجتمع "المنطقة الحرة" كان به نفوس مضطربة مخفية بينهم..يميلون للظلام أكثر في الخفاء المواجهة هي التي ستظهر المؤمنين وتقويهم وكلما كانت اسرع، كانت نتيجتها حاسمة اكثر في هذا الجزء أيضا يناقش الرموز الدينية واهميتها للبشر..ماذا اذا توفت الأم اباجايل؟ هل سيتزعزع ايمان الناجين الذين كونوا هذا المجتمع الصغير بسبب الارتياح النفسي لهالتها الدينية؟ الامر بالظبط كالمرتدين بعد وفاة الرسل.. ولكن بشكل رمزي من خلال الاحداث مقدمة بشكل ملائم وعصري ويدعو للتفكير لذا كان لابد من المواجهة الوقفة الاخيرة والكتاب الثالث والاخير ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ الكتاب الثالث : المواجهة من 7 سبتمبر الي 10 يناير - 300 صفحة فقط {إِنَّ كَيْدَ الشَّيْطَانِ كَانَ ضَعِيفًا} والان، هذا هو الجزء الاسوأ بالنسبة لي...والاجمل بنفس الوقت الجزء الاضعف... والاكثر حماسة بنفس الوقت تخيل انت تقرأ اكثر من 1100 صفحة لعلك تتوقع ملحمة ومواجهة تستمر لصفحات طويلة مليئة بالحرب والدماء والجمل الرنانة والاقتباسات الدينية القوية لكن الامر تم بشكل ابسط بكثير، واقسي بكثير مما توقعت بنفس الوقت لن احرق لك الامر لكن المواجهات التي تمت بين الشخصيات والشيطان، المسيخ الدجال ، وضعف حيلته أمام قوة الايمان وتزعزع صورته امام اتباعه هو امر يستحق القراءة الاسلوب هنا كان ساحرا وحماسيا طوال الوقت كنت اكتم انفاسي، اشهق ، او اتحمس كأني اريد ان اصيح Yesssss فقط كل شيء تم بسرعة اكبر مما توقعت اسمعك تقول ، كيف 300 صفحة ام تكفيك، هناك روايات تتحدث عن ما هو اكثر من ذلك في 300 صفحة فقط؟!!؟ حسنا، لن احرق لك الامر ولكن جزء كبير يصل للنصف من الكتاب الثالث والاخير يدور في الطريق الي المواجهة ، وطريق العودة في طريق الذهاب يناقش السيد كينج ببراعة اهمية رحلات تطهير النفس، كرحلات الحج في كل الاديان ، كخروج -مع الفارق- الانبياء والرسل للعراء في صوم للوحي الإلهي اما في الجزء الذي يدور في مدينة لاس فيجاس ، المجتمع الذي يتزعمه الرجل المظلم، فيقدم فيه السيد كينج عن طريق الجواسيس المرسلين من المنطقة الحرة للاس فيجاس، مقارنة مثيرة للتفكير بين المجتمعين كيف ان الحكم النازي، حكم الطاغية، يؤدي الي جعل البشر يحافظون علي مواعيد عملهم ويسارعون في انجازه، بعكس الحال تماما في "المنطقة الحرة" حيث هناك شئ من التراخي رغم أهمية العمل لكن بنفس الوقت الحكم النازي ، حكم الشيطان الطاغية، يجعل المحكومين كأشباه بشر...يعيشون في خوف دائم، لان الطاغية لا يملك غيره يعطيه لهم ليحكم به فلصالح من تنتهي المواجهة؟ . . . ثم ماذا بعد؟ كيف سيكون المجتمع بعد ذلك هل سينجح النسبة التي تقل قليلا عن 1% من البشر العيش بسلام ام ان الدائرة ستنغلق وسنكرر أخطائنا ويعيد التاريخ نفسه؟ . . . الي هنا تنتهي مراجعة الأحداث اتمني ان تكون عرفت الان صديقي القارئ لم قرأت رواية 1440 صفحة..وماذا خرجت منها ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ الشخصيات من ستصطحبهم أغلب ال1440 صفحة دون حرق مصائر ستو ريدمان هو مفهوم ستيفين كينج عن "رجل الشارع البسيط" ، الرجل الجدع العادي الغريب أنه رغم وجوده في دور رئيسي إلا أنه لم يكن شخصيتي المفضلة..كان رجلا عاديا في ظروف غير عادية ، هذا كل شئ ولأن الشدة تظهر معادن البشر..حسنا ، لهذا قلت عنه انه الرجل "الجدع" ، رحلته بعد الوباء هي الأصعب بحق..ربما لم تتطور الشخصية كثيرا لاحقا لكن التجربة هي ما ستخلف به أثارا واضحة فراني جولدمان شابة جميلة ، عفوية جدا..ايضا قد تعد شخصية عادية رغم كل شئ لكن ما ستمر به من مصاعب يجعلها يظهر معدنها القوي ، بالأخص في الربع الأول عند معرفتها بحملها ومواجهتها لوالديها ولكن تقريبا مشهد تحملها المسئولية بوفاة والدها كان من أصعب المشاهد..وأصرارها علي أن تدفنه بنفسها رغم صعوبة الامر، رسمها كينج ببراعة، وظهرت بلوحة من لوحات الرواية وإن كنت عرفت أن فراني يمكنها تحمل المسئولية بهذا الشكل بالربع الأول ، فهي بهذا عكس الشخصية المناقضة لها لاري أندروود مطرب الروك ، شخصيتي المفضلة...ربما بالاخص بسبب فصوله مع أمه أليس أندروود أمه تواجهه بحقيقته ، بصراحة ووضوح؟ نعم، لكن بقسوة؟...لا أعتقد.. قالتها له مباشرة أنه من النوع الذي يأخذ ويأخذ ولا يعطي، لا يتحمل مسئولية … ظنت ان السنون قد تجعله ينضج لكنه مازال لاري القديم، يقع في مشكلة فيلجأ للحل الأسهل لكن توافق أمه علي أن يمكث معها في بيته القديم في ضيقته ، بل وتحضر له كل المأكولات التي يحبها من الصغر حتي دون أن يطلب لاري شخصية مثيرة جدا لان هناك مثله الكثيرين، بل للاسف شعرت بشئ ما مألوفا عندي لا يقصد ان يكون سيئا..يندم بعد فوات الاوان..لكنه يظل دوما مطاردا بذلك الندم..كما ظل مطاردا بكلمات أمه، وشبح اتهامه أنه "ليس بالشخص الجيد"..ربما هو كذلك؟ الفصول التي جمعته وأمه أغلبها من النسخة الممتدة -كانت محذوفة في النسخةالقديمة- ، وهنا أعتقد أنك ستدرك سر جمال الرواية الطويلة إن كانت مكتوبة جيدا التفاصيل هنا ستجعلك تتفاعل مع لاري، تحبه، تكرهه، تشفق عليه كأمه...وبالاخص شخصية أمه والتي اراها من اجمل ما كتب كينج من الامهات ستيفين كينج مشهور بالامهات القاسية المستبدة -أم فراني، الشخصية السابقة، خير دليل- لكن أليس رغم انها واجهت لاري بعيوبه لكن تصرفاتها الصامتة معه كانت اقوي تأثيرا وربما لهذا كان سبب ثراء تحولات شخصية لاري من البداية للنهاية أعتقد ان كل مشاهده مع امه لاتنسي، ملوها الثلاجة لما يحبه ، مصروفه ليدخل السينما برغم من سنه الكبير، وعده لها لاصطحابها للعبة البيسبول في يوليو ، صراعه النفسي الشديد وقت احتضارها ووفاتها والذي اعتقد انه هنا كان نقيضا نوعا ما ممتازا لدور فراني نيك أندروز شاب صغير ابكم وأصم ، يتيم، عصامي، ظروف معيشته الصعبة جعلت تحمله للمسئولية أهم خصاله شاب صاخب رغم مظهره الهادئ وحالته يتحمل المسئولية من بداية ظهوره مع مأموربلدة صغيرة، بل وحتي يرعي زوجته بعد رحيله.. ولم يعلم وقتها مقدار المسئولية التي ستلقي عليه لاحقا من المشاهد التي لاتنسي له هو عندما اعترف للأم أباجايل أنه غير مؤمنا، ردها كان جميلا وواقعيا...ودوره في المجتمع الوليد عاما كان مكتوبا بشكل جيد جدا جلين باتيمان هو خبير علم الاجتماع العجوز، رجل ذكي فطن...يقرأ بسهولة كيف سيكون المجتمع الذي قد يتكون من الناجين رغم انه اول ظهوره لم يتقابل سوي ستو ريدمان وكلب اسماه كوجاك منذ بداية ظهوره أخر الكتاب الاول وهو "رمانة الميزان"، ذلك الذي لا ينطق عن هوي، بل ينطق عن اقتباسات، اغلب اقتباسات الكتاب ستجدها منه ينطق عن علم نفس بشرية وعلم اجتماع وفلسفة...كيف ان التاريخ يعيد نفسه . كيف ان بناء المجتمعات لم يتغير، الوعي الجمعي والاحلام...العلاقات بين المجتمعات...بل وحتي الاجزاء الدينية ايضا رغم انه غير مؤمن هارولد لويدر شاب مراهق وحيد، بدين، لا يملك سوي الكتب والكتابة كرفقة دائمة...واعجاب قديم من طرف واحد بصديقة اخته التي تكبره ببضعة اعوام...فراني هارولد شخصية مهتزة غير واثقة بنفسها...ولكنه عبقريا، ذكيا ولذكاءه وسعة حيلته وافقت فراني ان ترافقه في رحلة البحث عن ناجين، غير أن ذلك بسبب أن ببلدتهم هما اخر ناجين من الوباء تطورات الشخصية كتبها ستيفين كينج بشكل عبقري طوال الاحداث مع كل الشخصيات التي ستنضم معه وفراني ، ليكون من الشخصيات القليلة التي تطورت شخصيتهم بشكل كبير علي مدار الرواية -ستيفين كينج ممتاز في رسم مثل تلك الشخصيات- ريتا سيدة اربعينية مرفهة، لكن رغم انها قد تبدو قوية وصلبة بعد نجاتها من الوباء إلا أن نيويورك بعد الوباء كانت قادرة علي تحطيم اعصابها الشخصية مرسومة بشكل جيد ومؤثر بالاخص بالنسبة للاري اندروود أقتباسها من رحلة عصبة الخاتم في رواية تولكين الملحمية الاشهر "ملك الخواتم" في بداية رحلة 'الخروج' من نيويورك مع لاري كان موفقا. خاصا ان رحلة تولكن، والتي تعتبر ملهمة ستيفين كينج الرئيسية لكتابة تلك الرواية الملحمية علي غرارها.. ولكن في عالمنا، بامريكا بدلا من الأرض الوسطي الفانتازيا لويد مجرم محبوس في قضية قتل ارتكبت لانه كان تابعا لمجرما اخر مختلا لكن الوباء بدلا من ان يتسبب القضاء عليه، تسبب في انه كان علي وشك الموت من الجوع والعطش وحيدا في الزنزانة حتي يأتي من معه المفتاح لاخراج مجرم كهذا ومن سيكون سوي رجل الظلام نفسه ليكون لويد..كما في قبل الوباء كما في بعده.. مجرد تابع لقاتل مع الاختلاف رجل صناديق القمامة مختل بسبب ماض قاس وظروف عائلية سيئة يحكيها لنا السيد كينج بالتفصيل يهوي اشعال الحرائق بهوس شديد خمن الي اي جانب سينضم نادين شخصية مثيرة، شابة في اواخر سنوات الشباب لكن شعرها المختلط اسوده بالبياض سببه حادث قديم غامض نادين شخصية متحفظة، تخفي امرا ما يقتلها بصراع نفسي رهيب بين قبول ورفض يقابلها لاري أندروود خلال الرحلة مع فتي صغير عجيب به شيئا من الشفافية، او كما يفضل السيد كينج اطلاق عليها "اللمعان" كما في اسم روايته التي سبقت تلك The Shining كلا الشخصيتين كان ممتعا في قراءة مشاهدهما بالاخص عند لقاء الأم اباجايل وهناك الكثير من الشخصيات الاخري التي تظهر بعد ذلك، مهمة ولها روح ، واخري عادية او مجرد فرد اخر في المجتمعات التي ستتكون، وشخصيات اخري غير ما سبق لها دور مهم ومحرك في الاحداث حتي لو صغر لكن لضيق المساحة لنر اهم شخصيتين راندل فلاج/رجل الظلام/ظفر الشيطان عند ظهوره بالربع الاخير من الكتابالاول استنكرت الماورائية والجزء الفانتازي الذي قام ستيفين كينج تقديمه به لكنه بمرور الأحداث ستفهم ان كينج يقصد به انه أداة الشيطان، مخلبه او اصبعه او ظفره كالشيطان ينمو ويقوي في الفوضي، في زعزعة الايمان، في مثل تلك الاحداث الكابوسية لكن في هذا العدد القليل من البشر، وبعد قيامة صغري قام بها البشر بايديهم، قدمه ستيفين كينج كرمز للمسيخ الدجال ليختبر به البشر، ليجمع اتباع، ويكيد للجانب الاخر..المؤمن اعجبني بشدة رموز الظلام المحيطة بتلك الشخصية، مواجهته الضعيفة بالبداية للأم اباجايل كحيوانات ابن عرس ولكن اعجبني اكثر انه لم يلجأ لتهويل وتعظيم شخصيته الخيالية لجعلها الشيطان نفسه مثلا، فقط رمزا كالجانب الاخر الام اباجايل سيدة عجوز مؤمنة ،تكلمت عنها في جزء الاحداث تحولت لرمز ديني لسبب إلهي يحلم بها الناس الجميل هنا ان كينج قدم حياتها بشكل تفصيلي قبل ذلك لكن الاجمل أنه حاول ان يقسو عليها فقط لينفي خطيئة قد يقع فيها امثالها من يجد تجمع الناس حوله خطيئة الشيطان الفخر لا يتبق سوي حروف قليلة، واعتقد ان الي هنا ينتهي المراجعة "المختصرة" للنسخة "الكاملة" لملحمة ستيفين كينج الاضخم في 1440 صفحة المواجهة محمد العربي من 1 مارس 2017 الي 31 مارس 2017 -يمكنك متابعة مراجعات الكوميكس لمزيد من التفصيل-

  8. 5 out of 5

    Petrik

    3.5/5 stars M-O-O-N. That spells I am done with this MOONstrosity of a tome. This is the biggest single book I’ve ever read in my life so far—It’s 470k words and it’s even bigger than Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson—and although it doesn’t go into my personal favorite list, I enjoyed the majority of the book. The Stand is totally not what I expected. I really thought this would be a super thrilling plot-driven with a lot of actions book due to the nature that the story revolves around a plague out 3.5/5 stars M-O-O-N. That spells I am done with this MOONstrosity of a tome. This is the biggest single book I’ve ever read in my life so far—It’s 470k words and it’s even bigger than Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson—and although it doesn’t go into my personal favorite list, I enjoyed the majority of the book. The Stand is totally not what I expected. I really thought this would be a super thrilling plot-driven with a lot of actions book due to the nature that the story revolves around a plague outbreak. As it turns out, The Stand is a HIGHLY characters’ driven book with the plot moving at a very slow pace, and as great as it was, sometimes it did get a bit excruciating. One of the two that stands out the most from this book—other than the gigantic size—in my opinion was the theological nature and the classic tale of a battle between good versus evil. “That wasn't any act of God. That was an act of pure human fuckery.” There are a lot of symbolism to the aspect of light versus darkness here. To give one example of many, with the country being ravaged by the outbreak, the survivors ended up joining either Mother Abagail’s group (the good) or Randal Flagg’s group (the evil); Mother Abagail is located in the East (where the sun rises every day) and Randal Flagg is located in the West (where the sun set). I enjoyed reading almost all the characters’ perspectives and survivor’s tales and I really think if you love a HEAVY theological talk in your fiction, this is a must-read. “The beauty of religious mania is that it has the power to explain everything. Once God (or Satan) is accepted as the first cause of everything which happens in the mortal world, nothing is left to chance...logic can be happily tossed out the window.” Other than the theological talk, the characters were almost absolutely delightful to read. The characters developments in this book were astounding to say the least and it was awesome to see how far these characters changed from where they began. Plus, Stephen King writes very unconventional and memorable characters in The Stand such as Nick, Tom Cullen, Randal Flagg, Harold, Larry, and Mother Abagail to name a few. Picture: Mother Abagail by Bernie Wrightson Now, the parts that didn’t work for me. First being Stephen King’s prose took quite a while for me to get used to. Second, and probably my major problem with the book, The Trashcan’s man chapters were atrocious. I didn’t enjoy any moment reading his POV, it was messy, felt juvenile, and during my time reading it, I knew immediately this his meeting with the Kid was going to be the one that was cut out from the first published edition of this book, and I was right. It was a painful 70 pages chapter which in my opinion offer close to zero points to the story. Finally, with a book this HUGE, I really expected the ending to blow me away but the ending ended up being anti-climactic. I also can’t help but think that the first edition of this book (the 800 pages one) would probably be a better experience. Stephen King received the title “word diarrhea” for a great reason and a lot of the words in this book in my opinion definitely deserves to be flushed. Overall though, I think The Stand is still overall a great book. Even though it’s not a genre that I dive into frequently, I found myself amazed by the characterizations and compelled to read what happened to most of the characters. It’s unfortunate that there were a few hiccups with the pacing and ending but I still will recommend this book to anyone who enjoyed a heavy theological discussion and memorable characters in their read. Thank you also to my good friend, Celeste, for giving me this book as a late birthday present! You can find this and the rest of my Adult Epic/High Fantasy & Sci-Fi reviews at BookNest

  9. 4 out of 5

    Alex is The Romance Fox

    I never get tired of reading this book. It's my absolute all time favorite reads. Every once in a while I have to go back and read it again and again....and it's just as good as the first time I read it those many years ago. 1st Review The end of the world where humanity takes a stand between good and evil. I am a Stephen King fan and whilst I have read most of his books, The Stand has remained my all-time favorite. I read it when it was first published in 1978 and I was really happy when a longer I never get tired of reading this book. It's my absolute all time favorite reads. Every once in a while I have to go back and read it again and again....and it's just as good as the first time I read it those many years ago. 1st Review The end of the world where humanity takes a stand between good and evil. I am a Stephen King fan and whilst I have read most of his books, The Stand has remained my all-time favorite. I read it when it was first published in 1978 and I was really happy when a longer and uncut version came out in 1990 and have since read it many times. It remains an incredible, riveting and unforgettable story. The ultimate post-apocalyptic/horror/fantasy and thought provoking novel. The following content was provided by the publisher, giving a brief synopsis of the story and information on the 1991 uncut version. This is the way the world ends: with a nanosecond of computer error in a Defense Department laboratory and a million casual contacts that form the links in a chain letter of death. And here is the bleak new world of the day after: a world stripped of its institutions and emptied of 99 percent of its people. A world in which a handful of panicky survivors choose sides -- or are chosen. A world in which good rides on the frail shoulders of the 108-year-old Mother Abigail -- and the worst nightmares of evil are embodied in a man with a lethal smile and unspeakable powers: Randall Flagg, the dark man. In 1978 Stephen King published "The Stand, the novel that is now considered to be one of his finest works. But as it was first published, "The Stand was incomplete, since more than 150,000 words had been cut from the original manuscript. Now Stephen King's apocalyptic vision of a world blasted by plague and embroiled in an elemental struggle between good and evil has been restored to its entirety. "The Stand: "The Complete And Uncut Edition includes more than five hundred pages of material previously deleted, along with new material that King added as he reworked the manuscript for a new generation. It gives us new characters and endows familiar ones with new depths. It has a new beginning and a new ending. What emerges is a gripping work with the scope and moral complexity of a true epic. For hundreds of thousands of fans who read "The Stand in its original version and wanted more, this new edition is Stephen King's gift. And those who are reading "The Stand for the first time will discover a triumphant and eerily plausible work of the imagination that takes on the issues that will determine our survival. [image error] This is one book that’s left a lasting impression on me and I love picking it up and reading it all over again and again. How quickly and easily greed, corruption and playing the Hand of God can bring humanity to its knees and even with the possibility of their total extinction. That thought is not that far fetched with all the stuff that’s being done today, all in the name science. Hah!!!!!!!!The plot line which is divided into three parts/books follows the experiences of the plague survivors before, during and after the catastrophe and the roles they play in the story. It’s dark, intense, terrifying and uplifting…there’s hope, faith, religion, love, hate, fear, fate and redemption. A suspenseful and emotional build-up to the final face-off of good versus evil. There’s a meaning to everything that happens in the story – the betrayals, the dreams, death and births. There is nothing random in anything. But it’s the realistic and deep characterization that’s astonishing. Complex and well developed characters that leap off the pages. It gives us a deeper understanding using the viewpoints of many of the characters – their back stories show the differences in the morality of humankind. The vivid descriptions make the plot and characters so real and believable. There are so many great characters in this story that some have left a lasting impression on me. [image error] [image error] Stu Redman, a quiet, moral and unassuming character that inspires people to continue their fight against evil. “Men who find themselves late are never sure. They are all the things the civics books tell us the good citizen should be: partisans but never zealots, respecters of the facts which attend each situation but never benders of those facts, uncomfortable in positions of leadership but rarely unable to turn down a responsibility once it has been offered . . . or thrust upon them. They make the best leaders in a democracy because they are unlikely to fall in love with power.” (view spoiler)[ Larry Underwood, who I totally disliked when he’s first introduced. He’s selfish, self-absorbed but slowly we begin to see something deeper and true in him. I became attached to him and when he finally finds his redemption in the stand against evil, it was totally devastating. “I think you're a taker. You've always been one. It's like God left some part of you out when He built you inside of me.” Harold Lauder is tortured by insecurities and the fighting the darkness that is inside him and ultimately giving in, hoping that will finally make him a worthwhile person. He doesn’t realize that he’s being manipulated by the dark forces and that he will die when he’s served his purpose.“He smiles a lot. But I think there might be worms inside him making him smile.”Nadine Cross – scary and frightening. These two sides of her – the goodness she shows with Leo, the child she cared and loved, after taking him with her on her journey to her other side - becoming Randall’s virgin bride and mother to his child. Tom Cullen – plays an important role in the story. He’s the good in all of us. Innocent and pure. The scene where he’s showing his new home in Boulder to the committee members is so poignant and touching. He would be like a man in a darkened unfamiliar room who holds the plug of a lampcord in one hand and who goes crawling around on the floor, bumping into things and feeling with his free hand for the electrical socket. And if he found it — he didn't always — there would be a burst of illumination and he would see the room (or the idea) plain. “The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want for nothing. He makes me lie down in the green pastures. He greases up my head with oil. He gives me kung-fu in the face of my enemies. Amen” Glen Bateman – the sociology professor who does not believe in God but in the end, he’s ready to sacrifice his life for the good of humanity. I loved his attitude to life, humans and the world. And he had the most incredible lines in this book.“Show me a man or woman alone and I’ll show you a saint. Give me two and they’ll fall in love. Give me three and they’ll invent the charming thing we call ‘society.’ Give me four and they’ll build a pyramid. Give me five and they’ll make one an outcast. Give me six and they’ll reinvent prejudice. Give me seven and in seven years they’ll reinvent warfare. Man may have been made in the image of God, but human society was made in the image of His opposite number, and is always trying to get back home.” “Dreams are the psyche's way of taking a good dump every now and then. And that people who dream - or don't dream in a way they can often remember when they wake up - are mentally constipated in some way.” And the confrontation between him and Randall Flagg is amazing. Glen knows and accepts his fate and not afraid to laugh at the devil!!!“Oh pardon me… it’s just that we were all so frightened… we made such a business out of you. I’m laughing as much at our own foolishness as at your regrettable lack of substance.” – Glen Bateman to Randall Flagg (hide spoiler)] Abigail Freemantle, 108 years old and believed to be the oldest person and survivor in the world and claims to be God’s prophet and is instrumental in bringing the good forces together. [image error] “God doesn't bribe, child. He just makes a sign and lets people take it as they will.” “The Lord provides strength, not taxicabs.” And a fine answer to why God had chosen her to be the messenger of God “...you'll find that God often chooses to speak through the dying and the insane...A healthy person might be apt to filter the divine message, to alter it with his or her own personality. In other words, a healthy person might make a shitty prophet.” And then there’s Randall Flagg also known as the Dark Man, The Walking Dude, friendly, smiling and helpful… but one can sense the evil and darkness behind that facade – a true villain. A demon wearing a denim jacket that displays a button of a pig wearing a cop’s cap one the one lapel and the other with a smiling face button. The sound that his well-worn, sharp-toed cowboy boots make as he walks the prison corridors to “save” Lloyd Heinrich. A face of true and dark evil. “He was known, well known, along the highways in hiding that are traveled by the poor and the mad, by the professional revolutionaries and by those who have been taught to hate so well that their hate shows on their faces like harelips and they are unwanted except by others like them, who welcome them to cheap with slogans and posters on the walls, to basements where lengths of sawed-off pipe are held in padded vises while they are stuffed with high explosives, to back rooms where lunatic plans are laid.” “He’s in the wolves… the crows, the rattlesnake, and the shadow of the owl at midnight and the scorpion at high noon. He roosts upside down with the bats. He’s blind like them.” (view spoiler)[ The third part of the book was both sad and uplifting. We discover the role that the main characters play in overcoming the Dark Man. And wow…that was totally unexpected. “There’s always a choice. That’s God’s way, always will be. Your will is still free. Do as you will. There’s no set of leg-irons on you. But... this is what God wants of you.” I thought that Nick Andros death caused by a bomb planted by Harold & Nadine in the house where the Free Zone Committee was distressing but what Stu, Larry, Glen & Ralph were faced with – travelling to Las Vegas to face Randall Flagg knowing that it would result in their deaths – was incredibly sad. When Stu breaks his leg and the remaining 3 have to carry on without him was beyond sad – it was HEARTBREAKING – Larry having to be comforted by Stu and convinced that this was all part of their destiny. “Goodbye East Texas. It’s been pretty goddamn good to know you.” -Glen Bateman to Stu Redman,And the journey Stu and Tom Cullen face getting back home through the freezing cold, buried by snow…the struggle to survive…never giving up. And finally the birth of Fannie’s son….giving them hope for the future ahead of them. The epilogue totally blew my mind!!!!!!!!! Randall Flagg does not die in the atomic bomb blast?? What the hell…so some of the followers do...which was fitting…but why the good guys???? Why not the evil scourge???? But then, I understood. Evil and good will always be the two forces that forever be facing each other…just another place, same light and dark with different faces.[image error] (hide spoiler)] Because humanity never learns from his mistakes. Bad things that happen are quickly forgotten pushed aside as memories past…and so the circle begins again. An eternal and never-ending battle where neither side wins or loses. Stu & Frannie, at the end say it all………….“‘Do you think… do you think people ever learn anything?’ She opened her mouth to speak, hesitated, fell silent. The kerosene lamp flickered. Her eyes seemed very blue. ‘I don’t know,’ she said at last. She seemed unpleased with her answer; she struggled to say something more; to illuminate her first response; and could only say it again: ‘I don’t know.’”Some more quotes I really liked - “There's precious little reform in the human race.”

  10. 4 out of 5

    jessica

    goodness me, this book was a chore. it took me nearly a month to finish and by the 12 day mark i was really regretting reading the unabridged version. and along the way, i realised that this is a classic case of me liking the idea of the book so much more than the book itself, which is so unfortunate. i thought the beginning started off really strong. i was enjoying seeing how the plague affected everyone differently and the lengths everyone had to take to survive the mass confusion and looming goodness me, this book was a chore. it took me nearly a month to finish and by the 12 day mark i was really regretting reading the unabridged version. and along the way, i realised that this is a classic case of me liking the idea of the book so much more than the book itself, which is so unfortunate. i thought the beginning started off really strong. i was enjoying seeing how the plague affected everyone differently and the lengths everyone had to take to survive the mass confusion and looming death. oh, and nick. nick is the best thing to come out of fiction since i dont know when. and although an attachment to a character is enough motivation to finish a book, its sometimes not enough to actually enjoy the book entirely. what really made me check out was when the dreams started becoming a major focal point to the plot. i just could not get behind the whole mother abigail vs. randall flagg story line. i understand that stephen king has wonderful and deep messages in his books, but if im not really engaged with the story, then im not going to invest the extra time to try to analyse everything. so i know i missed out there, but i cant bring myself to care more about it. so what began as an interesting story turned into a very religious subtext of good vs. evil. its an ambitious story, but one i just wasnt quite feeling by the end. ↠ 2.5 stars

  11. 4 out of 5

    Evgeny

    Humanity in general loves to play god trying to meddle in some very dangerous things. Military is not an exception as they are obsessed with creating more effective and devastating weapons. Considering the progress from a simple stone to an atomic bomb we became quite efficient at killing others en masse. Suppose we create a new virus which would make HIV look like a common flu. Great, now we can let it loose, wait and have all the enemy infrastructure intact with all the people gone. The proble Humanity in general loves to play god trying to meddle in some very dangerous things. Military is not an exception as they are obsessed with creating more effective and devastating weapons. Considering the progress from a simple stone to an atomic bomb we became quite efficient at killing others en masse. Suppose we create a new virus which would make HIV look like a common flu. Great, now we can let it loose, wait and have all the enemy infrastructure intact with all the people gone. The problem is virus does not care much about taking sides in a conflict. So such a virus was created paid for by US taxpayers and was accidentally released. The said taxpayers were practically wiped out with some rare exceptions that were immune to it. The end result: some occasional survivors have practically everything created by others just for taking. It seems to be practically a Utopia, but the people decided it would probably be boring so they split into two camps trying to wipe out each other. To be fair one of the group only wanted to eradicate the other in self-defense. The book is the story of how the disaster came to be and the story of these two groups. Before I begin rambling about the book I seriously need to get something of my chest. I truly believe Stephen King suffers from what I call Word Diarrhea. Other people call this phenomenon Typewriter Diarrhea, but I think my term is more general. I had a misfortune to read an unabridged edition of this. I lost count to the number of scenes that could be cut off without any impact on the remaining part. Just as an example: who cares about Fran's mother being a selfish bitch after her brother died? How did it affect the rest of the story? Do not get me wrong, King is a talented writer, but exercising some brevity in writing would improve the quality even further. As it stands now I did not go outside with a physical copy of the book being afraid I would be arrested for carrying as assault weapon. The book is clearly split in three parts: events leading to the catastrophe and its unfolding, survivors trying to cope, and two groups trying to exterminate each other. The first part was quite boring until the infection became widespread. I was not excited to read about day-to-day lives of the people that are about to die. To add an insult to the injury the people that were destined to survive were either jerks, or plain boring. Yes, I said it: nice people are boring; this was one of the lessons I learned from the book. What would you rather read about: a guy helping an old lady cross the road, or a guy torching an oil repository? If you answer "the former" you are lying. As you can see nice people have no chance of survival whatsoever; we are left with jerks. In fact let me introduce Stephen King's apocalypse survival rule #1: the bigger jerk you are the better your chances. Here comes another problem: I did not care about jerks that much. This left me exactly one person to root for; that person had the least screen time. Take Fran I mentioned above: she came out as somewhat unbalanced woman falling into giggling hysterics at a slightest reason; not the one to care for. This boredom continued until the military began a serious cover-up campaign. Military cover-up methods are taken straight from the Mafia books: dead people tell no tales. This action brought much-needed well... action. Here we finally get to the heroics and cowardliness of ordinary people. And then everybody died. Second part: the lonely survivors wonder around. I guess this part was OK, but I still have some things to say. Here King uses only black and white for characters with no gray shades: you are either with us, or against. I was also appalled by how quickly the (self-appointed) leaders decided their own lives are sacred and irreplaceable, but they are perfectly fine with throwing away lives of people around them. After all, they are good guys and as such Can Do No Wrong. I often miss the times when the leader of people was somebody who lead the attack on the enemy and could survive thanks to his/her battle skills. Imagine how many wars we could prevent if only we would let the people that declare them to lead the first attack. We already established the good guys are boring. It turns out they are also stupid as several people were practically wearing signs saying, "I am a traitor" and it did not bother anybody. No wonder the bad side managed to get more intelligent people - who wants to spend their time with stupid? Last part: confrontation. Finally things start moving alone. Probably the fastest-moving part all the way until last two chapters which were loooooong and felt like a complete filler. Every single plot thread was resolved at this point, so why the delay? The very end came in opposition of everything that was said before. It also bothered me that we ended up with a society of basically parasites living on what was built/grown/created before. Not a single human being in the book bothered with creating new things. Supplies would run out, sooner or later. Does it mean another resource war is coming? By this time I read quite a few King's books and as a result I noticed some things I think worth mentioning. Practically all people in any King's story love to let their bladder go the moment they get even a little scared. No exception to this rule (sorry one exception: tough as nails Roland the Gunslinger). The majority of bad guys often masturbate. Good guys never do. Reading King's stories never fails to make me hate the humanity. The hate goes away though - after a while and until I read his next work. Finally some amusing references: in the first part one of the cops works at 87th precinct and has a colleague named Steve Carella. Does it ring any bells? The amusing part is that this guy thinks Carella is completely dominated by his wife. Unfortunately I read Justin Cronin's The Passage before this one so I did not know how heavily he used copy/paste feature of a word processor. I will be generous and call him being heavily inspired by The Stand instead. Even such details as excessive wordiness and describing a full character's bio right before killing him/her for good are present in The Passage. My final rating is 3.5 stars which I reluctantly round up. There are several reasons for this. I gave The Passage 4 stars and it would be completely unfair to rate the original less. I have several friends that love this book a lot and would lynch me without thinking twice if I rate it any lower. Finally, it is a good book despite all its weaknesses and problems. Have you noticed how big my review is? I am afraid I contacted the Word Diarrhea I mentioned above. Seems highly appropriate for this book.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Diane Wallace

    Haunting read! scary good and well written (paperback!)

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ginger

    FULL REVIEW UP! Laws yes, I finished this huge ass book! I’ve been wanting to read The Stand for years. I put it off because of the sheer size of the book. I finally kicked my ass in gear and read this post-apocalyptic tale of good vs evil. I love post-apocalyptic/dystopian plots and I knew I needed to read this. I'm so glad I did! I went into this book not knowing much about the plot or characters. I did not watch the TV mini-series of The Stand which was produced back in 1994. I'm glad that I didn FULL REVIEW UP! Laws yes, I finished this huge ass book! I’ve been wanting to read The Stand for years. I put it off because of the sheer size of the book. I finally kicked my ass in gear and read this post-apocalyptic tale of good vs evil. I love post-apocalyptic/dystopian plots and I knew I needed to read this. I'm so glad I did! I went into this book not knowing much about the plot or characters. I did not watch the TV mini-series of The Stand which was produced back in 1994. I'm glad that I didn’t watch it or know what type of plot and characters that Stephen King was going to introduce me too!! I think it's better that way. The Stand starts off with a deadly plague that kills most of the world’s population. I enjoyed reading about the trials and tribulations of the survivors trying to navigate in this new world. I loved this part of the book! And because of the death and destruction that occurs, Randall Flagg, the Dark Man comes back for the remaining survivors. Dun dun dun! I ended up reading the unabridged version of this dystopian tale. I do think that some of this “extra” of the unabridged version could have been cut out. I still loved the overall story though and have to give this book 5 stars because of the amount of world building and characterization that King ends up writing about. One thing that I had issue with on the unabridged version was the Trashcan Man chapters. It slowed down the pace for me and made me miss the other characters. Now that I’ve finished the book though, I understand why King wrote those chapters and wanted them in the book. I absolutely loved the ending of this book! I’ve read some reviews that had problems with it, but it worked for me. I’m not saying more due to spoilers. Last of all, some of the characters in this book will be with me for years. That’s the skill and brilliance of King when he writes a character driven plot. Nick Andros, Tom Cullen and Glenn Bateman will always be my favorites. And I will always hate Harold Lauder with a raging passion. What a weasel! Speaking of weasels… And now thanks to King, I want an Irish Setter like Kojak. Fetch Kojak, fetch!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Will M.

    The place where you made your stand never mattered. Only that you were there...and still on your feet. So I finally finished this gigantic brick. This freakin' gigantic heavy brick, and all I can say is, this is probably the best freakin' brick ever made. With a heaping 1439 pages, this book managed to hurt both my wrists, and probably injured some of my fingers. That's the price I had to pay to read this amazing novel. I never thought that I wouldn't finish this, fuck it I never even though The place where you made your stand never mattered. Only that you were there...and still on your feet. So I finally finished this gigantic brick. This freakin' gigantic heavy brick, and all I can say is, this is probably the best freakin' brick ever made. With a heaping 1439 pages, this book managed to hurt both my wrists, and probably injured some of my fingers. That's the price I had to pay to read this amazing novel. I never thought that I wouldn't finish this, fuck it I never even thought of putting this book down and read something else for the meantime. All I can say is, Stephen King managed to impress me again. Not that I doubted him though. Its a typical thing for King to serve us with multiple characters with different stories, and plunge them together at some point. And as usual, some were amazing, and some were dreadfully boring unforgettable. This was also my experience while reading Needful Things, but his characters here are way better. I got an in depth description of each one, and I either loved or hated each one. That technique of King is truly remarkable. What goes best with an amazing plot? Well, freakin' amazing characters that's what. Ask me who my favorite is, and I'll probably end up describing most of them instead because I loved almost all of them. I remember complaining how long the novel is. I've read quite a few epics, but all of them were way shorter than this. When I finished though, and pondered upon what could've been excluded, none came to mind. I believe everything happened for a reason, or let me rephrase that, everything was written for a reason. You can't really take out something from the story, because then the plot holes would reappear. The length of the novel is proportional to the enjoyment I experienced while reading this. Once again, the characters were amazing and fully developed. I actually cared for them, and I didn't want them to die. This novel focused on the battle between good and evil, in a lengthy epic like feeling. We have Mother Abagail on the good side, and Flagg as the devil. It's King's second time to introduce a devil-like character, and the character turned out just as amazing. Flagg truly depicted a strong devil. He's really a strong character that I would love to read more about in his other novels (really hoping for a guest appearance). Harold is the one I hated the most while reading. That pig really annoyed me. Everything he did was really annoying, and I wanted him to die at one point in the novel. Although I do have to point out that I hate him for a good reason. My hatred of him led to a better enjoyment of the novel. We all hate a character, and we want to see awful things done to them. I'm more than satisfied with the characters King created. Lloyd and Nick were really amazing too. One is part of the dark team, and the other of the good team. I'm not gonna spoil who belongs where. All you need to know is that Nick's a kickass deaf-mute, and Lloyd's an annoying yet funny character. Tom's really cool too, despite being a retard. I didn't care for him that much in the beginning, but things started to change as I read along. Stu and Fran's story would have to be my favorite of all the ones in the novel. Ever since the early parts of the novel, Fran's story already caught my interest, and it continued till the end. Larry Underwood's also really interesting. His pride overcoming him then more awful things happening really kept me interested in what would happen to him. I'm only going to mention those characters though, because who would want to read a spoiler and ruin their reading experience right? Those 3 are my favorites, but that doesn't mean that the others were boring. I will repeat, almost all the characters are amazing. There will obviously be a few that would stand out, and those 3 are my choice. Wait, I forgot to mention another favorite, the freakin' dog Kojak!! I always love dogs in novels. Kojak didn't disappoint! (view spoiler)[ Yes!! The baby lives, and King kinda went Sci-Fi with all the science talk, and I loved it. He further expanded the world building, and in the end, he actually created a perfect world. With 99% of the world gone, and a super virus that is still haunting the citizens even though it's eradicated, the readers will wonder what would happen to the human race, and what King gave us is probably the perfect solution. The baby problem in the latter part of the novel was really cool for me, and the solution was even cooler. I actually though either the baby or Fran would die, thankfully neither did. (hide spoiler)] (view spoiler)[ STU DIDN'T FUCKING DIE. I actually thought he would, because King fucking wrote "and they never saw Stu Redman again". But that actually meant that the other three died. Even though Larry died, Stu's still my favorite so I'm not complaining. His survival was also really interesting for me. Pneumonia and other sicknesses associated with his situation. Flawless writing from King. (hide spoiler)] Okay, enough feet kissing and let me get on with some negative aspects of this novel. The back of the book states that "The survivors who remain are scared, bewildered, and in need of a leader. Two emerge - Mother Abagail, the benevolent 108-year-old woman who urges them to build a community in Boulder, Colorado; and Randall Flagg the nefarious "Dark Man", who delights in chaos and violence. Yes, both of them possess those amazing qualities, but I don't think it's right to say that both of them are the leaders of the novel. I get that people in the novel looked up to the both of then [in fear and in doubt] but neither of the two became my genuine favorite. I really liked them both, yes, but that's that. Randall's really outstanding with all the violence don't get me wrong, but Mother Abagail was presented as somewhat disgusting . Obviously opinionated, but hey, aren't all reviews opinionated? Maybe I should've said that I had one problem, because that's all I can think of as of right now. I had problems along the novel though, but all [except the one stated above] were resolved. Major problems like plot holes and all were resolved at the end of the novel, and that's awesome. Mostly when I read a novel, the problems that I had while reading didn't get fixed. The Stand proved itself otherwise. The main problem would be that we tend to complain even if we're not yet done with the novel. The ending's really great. I'm not going to complain anymore because I really liked it. It gave me closure, and honestly, the ending's really witty. You'll have to read it yourself, but I really liked it. I'm not gonna put it in a spoiler tag anymore, because there's no reason to do so. Just read this amazing novel and see for yourself. Once again, real witty of you King. This is why you're my favorite author. (view spoiler)[ The nuclear blowout in the end was not as amazing of an ending as I was hoping. Flagg being the devil, I kinda figured he wouldn't end up dead. Why use a man made creation to kill a supernatural being right? I'm not considering this as a major problem of mine though, I just thought that King could've ended the novel in a different way. I can't think of a better ending though, so I also don't get this contradicting and useless spoiler tag. (hide spoiler)] So to wrap things up, this is now my favorite King novel. It is clearly superior to The Long Walk and Needful Things, both in length and substance. I'm not saying don't read the other two, because they are both amazing in their own ways, and I'm also recommending them. The Stand is just King's novel that had the biggest impact on me, as of now. Such a shame to say that he's my favorite author yet I believe I've read less than ten books of his, and I've only read this now. I'm planning to change that soon though, I can't wait to read more amazing novels written by King. 5/5 stars, and a worthy addition to my favorites list. A clear recommendation, and I can say that this is one of my best reads of 2014.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Matthew

    The Stand Abridged: 5 Stars The Stand Unabridged: 3.5 to 4 Stars I hope that Goodreads lets both of my star ratings of this book go through as I already rated The Stand Abridged years ago, but in case it doesn’t, I am combining my review of the two into one. The original Stand is one of my top three favorite books of all time (the other two being Brave New World and 1984 – I am a sucker for post-apocalyptic/dystopian). I don’t think The Stand is the best introduction a person could have to Stephen The Stand Abridged: 5 Stars The Stand Unabridged: 3.5 to 4 Stars I hope that Goodreads lets both of my star ratings of this book go through as I already rated The Stand Abridged years ago, but in case it doesn’t, I am combining my review of the two into one. The original Stand is one of my top three favorite books of all time (the other two being Brave New World and 1984 – I am a sucker for post-apocalyptic/dystopian). I don’t think The Stand is the best introduction a person could have to Stephen King (that lies with Salem’s Lot or The Dead Zone), but it is a great story of good vs evil that shows King’s writing chops to the extreme. Other than a slow spot in the middle (view spoiler)[ (Free Zone) (hide spoiler)] , it is perfectly paced and un-put-downable. That is where my problem with the Unabridged version lies – and I have seen other reviews complaining about the same thing; some even saying that the abridged version of The Stand is their favorite King book, and the Unabridged their least favorite. There is just too much extra! I think the editors had it right when they cut down some of the extended scenes - they slow the pace considerably of what was a roller coaster ride of a book. There are extensive scenes at the beginning of the book and in the middle that felt like they would never end. The already slow part I mentioned above is now close to 400 pages – longer than most books I read! The best paced part was the action packed final 200 pages or so, and they were almost the same as in the abridged version. In fact, all the parts I enjoyed the most were there in the abridged version – and I don’t think I enjoyed them just because of familiarity. Another thing that the extended parts caused was getting out of touch with the characters for a much longer time than before. Several times I found myself asking “Where is so and so – it has been forever since we heard what was going on with them”. It caused me to lose my connection with some of the minor characters because they are now overshadowed by the major characters. Also, most of the added parts related to the good guys, which made the story lines of the bad guys almost feel like an afterthought. Probably the best new part was (view spoiler)[ Trashcan Man and The Kid as it filled in the blanks for the Trashcan Man’s journey across America. However, it makes it more obvious that Trashy is barely in the rest of the book – which I don’t remember feeling when I read the abridged version (hide spoiler)] . In summary, I think if I didn’t have the abridged version to compare it to it may have been a 4.5 or 5 star book. But, with the 5 star abridged version out there, it is no contest. While it is interesting to learn more about the characters, it throws the pacing off and makes it more of a chore and less of a joy to read.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Samadrita

    One of the reasons why I would never club Stephen King together with any of the other best-selling writers of his generation (Grisham, Archer, Patterson, Sheldon and so on) is this :- None of them match King's calibre as a story-teller. They don't even come close. If somebody spins an intriguing tale, his characters get in the way of my enjoyment of it. If somebody excels at characterization, his plotting is rather unconvincing. If somebody plots a story well, then his writing turns out to be flat. ( One of the reasons why I would never club Stephen King together with any of the other best-selling writers of his generation (Grisham, Archer, Patterson, Sheldon and so on) is this :- None of them match King's calibre as a story-teller. They don't even come close. If somebody spins an intriguing tale, his characters get in the way of my enjoyment of it. If somebody excels at characterization, his plotting is rather unconvincing. If somebody plots a story well, then his writing turns out to be flat. (And if you're unlucky enough, some of them mess everything up.) But Stephen King possesses that rare talent of getting everything right - the story, the unraveling of the plot, the imagery, the underlying implications, the characters, the backdrop, the world-building, the writing - down to the very last detail. He can grasp your attention at the onset, reel you in slowly but surely, give you nerve-wracking moments of pure anxiety, make you visualize a scene exactly the way he must have imagined it, feel for the characters in his story as if they were people of flesh and blood you were familiar with and, at some point, render you completely incapable of discerning between reality and the make-believe world of his imagination. And you're caught in the same nightmare as the characters of his book are plunging deeper into with every passing moment. The Stand is one such Stephen King creation. Arguably known as his best written work yet, The Stand, I'm happy to inform readers, deserves every bit of the praise and adulation it continues to receive worldwide till this day. Now don't get me wrong. The book is nothing new when you glance at the blurb. It is nothing you haven't already read or known about because it is the story your mom/dad/grandma must have read to you as a kid - while you listened moon-eyed with wonder and awe, overcome with emotions you couldn't quite fathom. It is the ever-fascinating and timeless tale of good triumphing over evil that you have come across enough times yet can never possibly get over. It is that same story, but with a distinct Stephen King-esque flavour. Add a dystopian, post-apocalyptic, anarchic world in the grip of an epidemic that claimed most human lives to the eternal conflict between good and evil, and the summation result will lead to The Stand. But it is so much more than this simple one-sentence summary. Every character, every plot device, every written scene has been constructed and put together so fastidiously in this book that at the end of it one feels that the reader is assigned with the task of collecting and preserving every piece of the gigantic puzzle to form this humbling, larger-than-life image the author had begotten. Everything is done so ingeniously, that the mesmerized reader can only sit back and watch this spectacle of gargantuan proportions unfolding right in front of his/her mind's eyes. Horror, psychological ramifications of events, political intrigue, war, chaos in the absence of a centralized administration, a crumbling world order, basest of our human tendencies - King doesn't shy away from exploring the entire gamut of human actions and emotions in a world where nothing of the old establishments has survived. This man can write. There's no doubt about it. In terms of sheer volume, scale and narrative sweep, it is an epic. In a way it is The Ramayana, The Mahabharata, The Iliad and The Odyssey or a concoction of all the elements that transformed each one of these stories into epics the world will never cease to look upon with the utmost respect. It is the story that never becomes stale despite the number of years you insert between the time you read it first and read it for the umpteenth time in some other form. It is the story that transcends barriers of language, culture, religion and history and will always be told and retold in possible ways imaginable, for as long as humanity survives. It is the story you are bound to be won over by even if you're snotty enough to swear by your copy of Ulysses and frown upon the Stephen Kings of the world of writing simply because they don't have much of a chance of ever winning the Man Booker or Pulitzer or *gasp* the Nobel Prize. It is the story of good, evil and everything in between. It is the story of love and hatred, loyalty and betrayal, sin and redemption, fate and co-incidence, rationality and the inexplicable. Of unalterable mistakes and innocence lost. Of the goodness of the human heart and the face of the Devil. At 1100+ pages, it was rather much too short. I almost wished for it to never end. But then again one can always re-read to start the cycle of awesomeness all over again.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Celeste

    Full review now posted! Original review can be found at Booknest. Rating: 6/5 stars. Yes, you read that right. Six out of five stars. This is one of the best books I’ve ever read. M-O-O-N, that spells phenomenal. Going into this book can be intimidating. It’s 1153 pages in its complete and uncut edition, making it one of King’s largest books. It is also considered by many King fans to be his best work. There’s disagreement, of course. Some swear by King’s magnum opus, The Dark Tower, while others ha Full review now posted! Original review can be found at Booknest. Rating: 6/5 stars. Yes, you read that right. Six out of five stars. This is one of the best books I’ve ever read. M-O-O-N, that spells phenomenal. Going into this book can be intimidating. It’s 1153 pages in its complete and uncut edition, making it one of King’s largest books. It is also considered by many King fans to be his best work. There’s disagreement, of course. Some swear by King’s magnum opus, The Dark Tower, while others hale IT as their favorite book of all time, while still others hold up various of King’s other works as their personal favorites. I have yet to read The Dark Tower and thus might change my mind on this, but so far I’m firmly in the camp that The Stand is King’s masterpiece. Within this massive book mingle so many genres. The setting is an apocalyptic dystopia, but there is romance and adventure and humor and theology and satire and fantasy. If I could only re-read five books for the rest of my life, this would be one of those five because it gives its readers so much. “Can you dig that happy crappy? Do you believe that happy crappy?” There were some fantastically well-developed characters in this book, and they all joined the side of one of the two most charismatic characters of all: Mother Abigail and Randall Flagg. Mother Abigail is a 108 year-old black woman who has been appointed by God to lead the side of good. Randall Flagg is the dark man, the tall man, the Walkin’ Dude, and he is the face of evil in this brave new world that’s been wrought by Captain Trips, the worse plague to ever sweep the earth. With 99 percent of the earth’s population wiped out at the hand of man, those remaining face off as they try to remake the world, for good or for ill. Though Flagg and Mother Abigail lead their respective sides, their followers are just as well-developed, of not more so. Honestly, there are too many amazing characters to list. But I think that the star of the show is Tom Cullen, a mentally handicapped man who accomplishes more than anyone would have believed possible. Tom made my heart squishy with his innocence and his belief in his friends. Every character King crafted within this story felt special and real and relatable, but Tom shone. One thing I really loved about this book was King’s decision to portray “good” characters and “bad” characters in such a human way. Those who sided with Flagg were still sympathetic and relatable, while those who sided with Mother Abigail were still fallible and petty at times. There were no perfect protagonists here, and no flat cardboard antagonists who are easy to hate. These were all people, real people, and I connected with them all. Besides the characters, my absolute favorite thing about this novel was its religious commentary. There was a level of theological depth here that’s not present in most religious fiction. I knew going into this book that it was a post-apocalyptic war between good and evil, but I had no idea that it would impact my thinking this much. Take this quote from Mother Abigail’s thoughts, for instance: "They filed in through the gate that Ralph opened and she felt her sin, the one she thought of as the mother of sin. The father of sin was theft; every one of the Ten Commandments boiled down to “Thou shalt not steal.” Murder was the theft of a life, adultery the theft of a wife, covetousness the secret, slinking theft that took place in the cave of the heart. Blasphemy was the theft of God’s name, swiped from the House of the Lord and set out to walk the streets like a strutting whore. She had never been much of a thief; a minor pilferer from time to time at worst. The mother of sin was pride. Pride was the female side of Satan in the human race, the quiet egg of sin, always fertile.” See? That’s some deep stuff, man. And this book was chock-full of it! Characters who didn’t believe in a Higher Power at all were faced with His probability, and watching them struggle between the rejection and acceptance of that knowledge was fascinating. The theological debates between characters and within their own thoughts was incredibly thought-provoking, and I would read this book again just for that. But there were so many more facets to this story. I was actually even okay with the ending here, which is often lacking in King’s novels; I felt like this one delivered. I highly recommend this book. If you’re going to read one Stephen King book, I wholeheartedly believe that this should be the top contender. It’s a commitment, true, but incredibly worth it. "The place where you made your stand never mattered. Only that you were there … and still on your feet.” My first buddy read with my wonderful friend Caleb!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    I read this book ages ago, but it's fresh in my mind every time I wind up stuck in traffic underneath the Hudson. It's about almost everyone in the world basically catching a bad case of the Plague and dropping dead. This premise doesn't seem very far-fetched, which could make it either more or less entertaining, depending on your temperment. Here's my opinion about good old Stevie King: he's got a real problem with endings. He'll spin these long, terrific stories, but way too often they're all ba I read this book ages ago, but it's fresh in my mind every time I wind up stuck in traffic underneath the Hudson. It's about almost everyone in the world basically catching a bad case of the Plague and dropping dead. This premise doesn't seem very far-fetched, which could make it either more or less entertaining, depending on your temperment. Here's my opinion about good old Stevie King: he's got a real problem with endings. He'll spin these long, terrific stories, but way too often they're all based in suspense, and he lures you to page 600 or whatever, and leaves you high and dry. I read the first half of _It_ in sixth grade and had to stop, as the book had completely deprived me of my ablity to sleep. Two years later, I'd finally recovered enough to brave It again, and the ending was so stupid that I sorely wished I'd saved myself months of clown-terror wakefulness by finishing it the first time. I mean, don't get me wrong, the guy can write. But he almost invariably writes himself into a corner, and his endings are a let-down. The great thing about The Stand, to me, is that King a. demonstrates that he's aware of this problem and b. uses his weakness jujitsu style, combined with wish-fulfillment, to great effect. You can just see him crouched at his typewriter, chewing on something and grumbling, "Christ, what's my problem..... These goddamn endings.... I just need a deus ex machina." I liked the Stand. The Stand's good stuff. It's not one of the scary ones (well, it's scary in a different way than, say, The Shining), and in addition to having an ending I appreciate, it also gets pretty silly, but still: Recommended. Yep. A-choo!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Norma * Traveling Sister

    Traveling Sister Reads Review by NORMA, BRENDA and KACEEY!! Let’s take a stand against evil!! 5 epic stars for THE STAND by STEPHEN KING as we all thoroughly enjoyed the entire experience of reading this masterpiece of a novel together. With not too many of Stephen King’s novels read and not really being all that familiar with his work, when we thought of King we thought of horror, disturbing, and very frightening came to our minds. THE STAND is much more than that and not what we expected at all a Traveling Sister Reads Review by NORMA, BRENDA and KACEEY!! Let’s take a stand against evil!! 5 epic stars for THE STAND by STEPHEN KING as we all thoroughly enjoyed the entire experience of reading this masterpiece of a novel together. With not too many of Stephen King’s novels read and not really being all that familiar with his work, when we thought of King we thought of horror, disturbing, and very frightening came to our minds. THE STAND is much more than that and not what we expected at all as we all went into this one pretty much blind. This is a whole different kind of disturbing and an unforgettably frightening story but yet hopeful with such a complex and believable story of human behaviour. It's clear to us now why this is considered a masterpiece. How can we not say something about the length of this very long book and what an achievement we all felt after getting through it. Yeah us! We spent two weeks with this complex plot and intense and complicated characters and enjoyed the discussions it created with each other. STEPHEN KING created a believable world here after a devastating destruction of the human race and it left us wondering how it would play out with our generation of technology. Could we survive or rebuild? Hmm Stephen King maybe you could add another 400 pages. This is an excellent book to choose for a group read and makes for great discussions. Would recommend! All of our Traveling Sister Reads Reviews can be found on our blog: http://www.twogirlslostinacouleereadi...

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jeffrey Keeten

    “None of us want to see portents and omens, no matter how much we like our ghost stories and the spooky films. None of us want to really see a Star in the East or a pillar of fire by night. We want peace and rationality and routine. If we have to see God in the black face of an old woman, it’s bound to remind us that there’s a devil for every god—and our devil may be closer than we like to think.” A plague has escaped a lab killing most of the population, only a few, a mere fraction of the whole, “None of us want to see portents and omens, no matter how much we like our ghost stories and the spooky films. None of us want to really see a Star in the East or a pillar of fire by night. We want peace and rationality and routine. If we have to see God in the black face of an old woman, it’s bound to remind us that there’s a devil for every god—and our devil may be closer than we like to think.” A plague has escaped a lab killing most of the population, only a few, a mere fraction of the whole, has immunity or manages to survive being infected. It is over in a matter of weeks. Civilization grinds to a halt, then collapses, and then falls into chaos. A Mad Max world is born. A virus that kills 99.4% of the people it infects is a very stupid virus. Even the Black Plague had a 20% survival rate, so for a virus to act this stupidly, it would have to be man made. The last thing any virus should do is kill the host. Death of the host leads to death of the virus. ”Now most of the young folks and old folks were gone, and most of those in between. God had brought down a harsh judgment on the human race.” Invariably, we can’t help bringing God into any situation where we think a judgment has been handed down on humanity, but he/she doesn’t have anything to do with this. This is man destroying himself. Some would make the case that God could have interceded, could have saved us if we had been worthy, but then when have we ever been ‘worthy’? Since we are made in his image I do think sometimes what God, if he exists, likes least in us is what he likes least about himself. The whole theory of God is built on good and evil. If evil exists, then oddly God exists. The Vatican has been working relentlessly to prove for centuries that pure evil exists to justify the whole need for their continued existence. The proof might be rising out of the ashes of this virulent plague. ”He was coming, Flagg was coming like some terrible horror monster out of the scariest picture ever made. The dark man’s cheeks were flushed with jolly color, his eyes were twinkling with happy good fellowship, and a great hungry voracious grin stretched his lips over huge tombstone teeth, shark teeth, and his hands were held out in front of him, and there were shiny black crow feathers fluttering from his hair.” The survivors are dreaming about the Dark Man, and they are dreaming about the old black woman in the cornfields of Nebraska. These dreams are as vivid as they are confusing. There is a battle for their souls going on. They must choose. Do they go to Randall Flagg, or do they flock to Abagail Freemantle? You would think it would be an easy decision. Don’t most of us think of ourselves as good people? Of course, we would join Abagail, the self-anointed prophet of God. Except, maybe it isn’t so clearly cut; as the two groups grow, it is starting to look like an even split. Abagail brings her flock to Boulder, Colorado, wanting to use the natural barrier of the Rockies to be the dividing line between her “good people” and the evil people following the Dark Man. Not to mention that she knows there has to be a reckoning. But are they evil? When people from the Boulder Free Zone mingle with those from the Dark Side, they find them to be normal people, just like the people they left back in Boulder. The biggest difference is that they are afraid, and fear, as we know, is the most insidious and easiest way to control people. It becomes very clear that Abagail’s army is really only fighting one man, one man with supernatural powers. ”Nevermore. Tap, tap, tap. The crow, looking in at him, seeming to grin. And it came to him with a dreamy, testicle-shriveling certainty that this was the dark man, his soul, his ka somehow projected into this rain-drenched, grinning crow that was looking in at him, checking up on him.” So it is sort of interesting to speculate about whether there are truly evil beings like Randall Flagg in the world, waiting for their opportunity, waiting for people to need someone larger than themselves to lead. Their power grows as people choose to believe in them. As long as civilization exists and people are reasonably content, a person like Flagg is never given an opportunity to thrive. We through our own discontent empower evil. This novel is one of the King epics. A fan poll on Goodreads, The Best of Stephen King Poll, shows that his fans still believe this is his best book. My favorite book, and the one that I feel will be considered his masterpiece, is IT , a book that I feel really brings together all of his best skills in building characters and shows off his gift for creating twisty, scary plots . IT is #2 on the Goodreads poll. Pennywise, in my opinion, might have had as large an impact on reading/watching audiences as Norman Bates in Psycho. Once you have been introduced to Pennywise try walking past a storm drain without giving it a wide berth. The Stand has a large cast, and most readers will have a favorite character. I liked several characters, actually, and wondered if I was going to find myself in a George R.R. Martin universe where identifying with a character was tantamount to self-inflicted grief. I was fortunate to stick with Stu Redman. He is a hick from Texas who continues to show hidden depths as circumstances shape and reveal his character. He made me smile with the following response, when it looks like dire circumstances may lead to a slow death: “Ralph came over to Stu and knelt down. ‘Can we get you anything, Stu?’ Stu smiled. ‘Yeah. Everything Gore Vidal ever wrote—those books about Lincoln and Aaron Burr and those guys. I always meant to read the suckers. Now it looks like I got the time.’” Gotta love the thought of a redneck from Texas reading the unabashed New York homosexual. In the forward, Stephen King talks about the meeting he had with the publishing group about the size of The Stand. It was originally published at about 800 pages, but then when they decided to reissue the uncut version, he was able to put back in about 400 pages that he had been forced to excise. ”I reluctantly agreed to do the surgery myself. I think I did a fairly good job, for a writer who has been accused over and over again of having diarrhea of the word processor.” He agreed to the cuts because the publishing team made a compelling case. They were able to show him the sales from his previous four books, the profit margin, and if he sold the same number of books of The Stand, how much slimmer the profit margin would be, because of the cost to produce the 400 extra pages. So the cuts were not made for editorial reasons, but for common sense accounting reasons. King was very happy to have the orphaned material reunited with the rest of the book. The book does bog down at times for me. I think that is inevitable with a book this size. King is taking on some larger themes here and for the most part keeps all the plates spinning in the air. I read a lot of post-apocalyptic books, and I’m sure if I ever let myself be put on a couch, a psychologist will explore those reasons thoroughly, but one thing I notice, while I am immersing myself in The Stand, is that I have a greater appreciation for my life and the cocoon that civilization wraps around me to keep me safe and provide me with the necessities so that I can have the time I want to read, putter, and write. Maybe I’m not as obsessed with the END OF THE WORLD as much as I am finding new ways to appreciate the wonderful life I do have. I have to admit, though, that I had to agree with lifestyle philosophy of the sociologist Glen Bateman. ”But Bateman himself hadn’t wanted to get in on the ground floor of society’s reappearance. He seemed perfectly content—at least for the time being—to go for his walks with Kojak, paint his pictures, putter around his garden, and think about the sociological ramifications of nearly total decimation.” I would hope I could ignore the siren calls of the ancient, wise woman in Nebraska and the seductive pull of The Dark Man and just enjoy the peace and quiet of a more tranquil world without the constant noise of people talking on their cell phones, music blaring from cars, planes taking off from airports, and millions of electrical lines humming. It is truly amazing any of us can think. f you wish to see more of my most recent book and movie reviews, visit http://www.jeffreykeeten.com I also have a Facebook blogger page at:https://www.facebook.com/JeffreyKeeten

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer (Jen/The Tolkien Gal/ジェニファー)

    Were the 1427 pages worth it? Laws yes! I decided to start reading The Stand when I started my new course at university – one much harder than one the previous. The last two months have consisted of late nights, copious amounts of coffee and naps during physiology class. But The Stand has been my constant and loyal companion; one that I have used as a pillow in the aforementioned physiology class. Finishing the book felt like saying goodbye to a friend that had not once let me down. I’d like to s Were the 1427 pages worth it? Laws yes! I decided to start reading The Stand when I started my new course at university – one much harder than one the previous. The last two months have consisted of late nights, copious amounts of coffee and naps during physiology class. But The Stand has been my constant and loyal companion; one that I have used as a pillow in the aforementioned physiology class. Finishing the book felt like saying goodbye to a friend that had not once let me down. I’d like to salute Stephen King for giving me Mother Abagail, Nick Andros, Glen Bateman, Kojak, Stu Redman, Fran Goldsmith and one of the most beautiful journeys I’ve ever been on.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Justin

    October 14, 2018 Review: This is my second time reading this ridiculously long piece of apocalyptic fiction, and I’m still not sure why I decided to read it again (listen to it, actually... I had someone read most of it to me this time through headphones directly into my ears). My review from two years ago is below, and it is honest. It’s how a felt when I finally reached the end of the book. I think I rushed the ending last time. Hell, I think I rushed a lot of the book last time. It’s long, oka October 14, 2018 Review: This is my second time reading this ridiculously long piece of apocalyptic fiction, and I’m still not sure why I decided to read it again (listen to it, actually... I had someone read most of it to me this time through headphones directly into my ears). My review from two years ago is below, and it is honest. It’s how a felt when I finally reached the end of the book. I think I rushed the ending last time. Hell, I think I rushed a lot of the book last time. It’s long, okay? Like a million pages or something. It can feel overwhelming. My first time through I just wanted to finish. The book had beaten me to death, and I was ready to tap out, submit, cash in my chips, and call it a night. I didn’t let that happen this time. This time I listened to the first third or so of the book (Book I) and reintroduced myself to all of the characters I’d met two years ago. It was a fun ride getting reacquainted with some of these people, many of them I remembered vividly from before while some of them get new again. So I read all that stuff... and I put the book down. After a little break, I moved on, picked up where I left off, and continued my journey west with these crazy survivors. The middle felt a little bloated, a little over cooked, but it was good, man. I just stopped when I caught myself checking out, and I went back to the story again later. When I got to the last act (The Stand!) I really slowed down. I took the exact opposite approach I used the first time around, and it paid off. I don’t wanna spoil anything, but spending a lot of time with a couple of characters slowly trudging our west was probably the best part of the book for me. I completely missed it last time in my quest to speed to the end, but taking the time to really savor what was happening and letting it sink it made me enjoy this so much more this time. So, yes, read The Stand. Listen to it if you need to. Take your time and enjoy it. It’s a massive undertaking, and it’s not always going to be easy, but do it. If you consider yourself a King fan, you really have no excuse. He paints a beautiful world here with dozens of memorable characters and scenes that will stick with me for a while. Some of his best writing is on display in some sections of the book, especially when nothing scary is happening. Glad I came back around on this one, and I’m looking forward to reading more of his early works this month. __________________ August 5, 2016 Review; I once had this goal to read everything King book in order of publication. I started with Carrie and worked my way down. When I got to The Stand I was worried because the copy I had was the new 1200 page version. I always hear about this one being his best so I finally gave it a shot. It started out great. A virus sweeps across the country. There are several different storylines to follow. Everything is great until about a third of the way into the book. Stephen King connects all the stories together and then drops everything. The book becomes extremely slow moving and nothing really happens. After pages and pages of nothing, I got to the end. I was about 30 pages from the end, then 20, 10... the book ended. No big surprises. No climax. The big scary man wasn't scary at all. I closed the book and wondered how this was a classic. So much more could have been done with this. It was a great idea, but it just didn't work out for me. Oh well. Maybe I will continue my quest through King's books. For now, I need a break.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Whitaker

    I’ve said before that romance fiction taps into a primal desire for comfort. It’s a fantasy, a snuggie to wrap up in curled up with hot chocolate and toasty roadhouse cookies. The Stand falls squarely into that category, and adds hot rum to the mix as well. The subtitle of The Stand really should be A Very Norman Rockwell Apocalypse. It’s a political fantasy set in the aftermath of a GM plague: a mutating flu virus with 99.4% transmissibility. Needless to say, 75% of the world’s population dies. I’ve said before that romance fiction taps into a primal desire for comfort. It’s a fantasy, a snuggie to wrap up in curled up with hot chocolate and toasty roadhouse cookies. The Stand falls squarely into that category, and adds hot rum to the mix as well. The subtitle of The Stand really should be A Very Norman Rockwell Apocalypse. It’s a political fantasy set in the aftermath of a GM plague: a mutating flu virus with 99.4% transmissibility. Needless to say, 75% of the world’s population dies. Well, as far as we know, since the novel is set in the US, and except for maybe two widely separated sentences in its 1000+ pages of text that tangentially mention the spread of the virus to China and Russia, the rest of the globe is one huge blank. It is not only a political fantasy, but it is a particularly American political fantasy. The trajectory of the novel could be described by this triptych of American Gothic: The crux of the conflict is between the good guys (who proceed to set up a Kumbaya egalitarian republic) and the bad guys (who run a pseudo-religious dictatorship/cult). The good guys are gathered in by Mother Abigail, an African-American woman (and the only significant person of colour in the entire book I believe), who plays the obligatory role of Virgin Mary/Mother Goddess/Earth Mother. The bad guys are led by Randall Flagg, a persona of pure evil, the Antichrist in all but name. Now I’ve nothing against comforting fantasy. It’s clearly hit some kind of sweet spot with a lot of Goodreaders. Good wins out, of course, and if you think that this is a spoiler, well then you’ve been living under rock for a century (this is Stephen King for crying out loud, not Thomas Mann). But what made the whole thing an indigestible corn syrupy mess for me is that it’s essentially founded on the idea that Bad People do Bad Things Cause They’re Possessed by the DEVIL. Seriously. Randall Flagg has this weird power over people where he takes over their minds. Yeah, it’s true that bad people are attracted to him even if they also find him repulsive. But King makes it clear that Flagg has some kind of occult power to influence them. Now, if this was ultimately about Flagg getting into a fisty-cuffs with Mother Abigail, with her using her own weird (but good weird) occult power to control her minions in some kind of heavenly smack-down, I would be okay with that. But it’s not. The forces of egalitarian righteousness are Good Simple Salt-of-the-Earth folk exercising their God-Given Freewill, laws yes they are! (One of them talks that way, I kid you not.) The spineless terrorised people under one Flagg are, on the other hand, mindless zombie spawn about to unleash nuclear Armageddon on the US of A. And that just really pisses me off. Cause in all of human history, it’s always been the rallying cry that the Other Side are in league with the Devil. That’s what makes it okay to rip out their guts, rape their wives, and bash out their babies’ brains. Hey, cause they’re not people, like us. When really, all it is is that that they aren’t people like us. That they aren’t people is such a sweet little fantasy. And one of the most vile and deadly ones too. It's sad to see it be perpetuated here. For shame, Stephen King! For shame!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Luvtoread

    The Stand is one of my all-time favorite books, and I think it is the most unforgettable. A must read if you are a SK fan, and a must read if you love Good vs Evil!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Kaceey - Traveling Sister

    A heartfelt thank-you to Norma and Brenda for including me in this 1,300 page marathon journey of a novel. I was kindly offered the opportunity to become part of the “traveling sister read” earlier this month. Such a great concept and what an incredible experience. I enjoyed every minute of it. All of our discussions, opinions and back-and-forth chats. So interesting to share each other’s thoughts as we made our way through the book together. With such an incredibly long book we managed to keep A heartfelt thank-you to Norma and Brenda for including me in this 1,300 page marathon journey of a novel. I was kindly offered the opportunity to become part of the “traveling sister read” earlier this month. Such a great concept and what an incredible experience. I enjoyed every minute of it. All of our discussions, opinions and back-and-forth chats. So interesting to share each other’s thoughts as we made our way through the book together. With such an incredibly long book we managed to keep one another on track. It was great fun trying to figure out where the story would take us. I can't imagine tackling this book without them! A 5 star book as well as a 5* reading experience! Thank-you to my 2 new Canadian sisters! In the end, the book left me with just one question: is mankind doomed to continually repeat his past mistakes? To see the full traveling sister review please visit Norma and Brenda's blog at: Http://twogirlslostinacouleereading.w...

  26. 5 out of 5

    Hasham Rasool

    I haven't read any horror book for 5 years. I have heard of Stephen King a many times. He is one of most popular authors. I never thought I would have read his book one day. This is the first book I have read by Stephen King. Stephen King has used very powerful vocabulary and it is very unusual style of vocabulary. Stephen King is a good writer. He has a very good imagination and the way he has created horror atmosphere is wonderful. King has created horror atmosphere and feel brilliant also he kno I haven't read any horror book for 5 years. I have heard of Stephen King a many times. He is one of most popular authors. I never thought I would have read his book one day. This is the first book I have read by Stephen King. Stephen King has used very powerful vocabulary and it is very unusual style of vocabulary. Stephen King is a good writer. He has a very good imagination and the way he has created horror atmosphere is wonderful. King has created horror atmosphere and feel brilliant also he knows how to draw the readers in and he deliberately keep suspension to make the readers to keep reading this book.There are multiples of characters in this book. This book has included religion and it has shown good verse bad. There are lots of characters but I really like one character in the book, Nick Anderos, he is my favourite character. What a stupendous book! 'The Stand' is masterpiece. This book is definitely one of my favourite books. Alhamdulillah.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Brenda - Traveling Sister

    Traveling sister read with Norma and Kaceey I am feeling wow right now and what an achievement reading The Stand. 2 weeks on this amazing book and the best part the discussions it created with Norma and Kaceey. Great book for a group read. Norma has posted the full review on her reviews or you can find it on our sister blog. http://www.twogirlslostinacouleereadi...

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mark Lawrence

    I loved this book. I read the uncut version years back when I lived in the States, maybe in 2002. I loved everything about it except the ending. I'm a big fan of Stephen King and have 23 of his books on my shelf. Stephen King can only write a good ending to a book by chance. That said, the first 95% of his books is generally so good that I can forgive the ending. One of the things I like best about King's writing is the way he breathes life into characters and every day settings. For a horror wri I loved this book. I read the uncut version years back when I lived in the States, maybe in 2002. I loved everything about it except the ending. I'm a big fan of Stephen King and have 23 of his books on my shelf. Stephen King can only write a good ending to a book by chance. That said, the first 95% of his books is generally so good that I can forgive the ending. One of the things I like best about King's writing is the way he breathes life into characters and every day settings. For a horror writer this is crucial. You have to make everything utterly believable so that when the monster comes and the stakes are raised the reader feels it's all real and cares about what's at stake. The short story, The Body, on which the film Stand By Me is based is a great example of King's genius at making complicated, flawed, awkward, real characters. Anyway, The Stand, is not typical King as the main core of it is an apocalypse, and the super natural horror element is rather secondary and low key for most of the story. The apocalypse is a believable one, a flu pandemic with a mortality rate so high that only a tiny fraction of the population survives. King tears the world down in terrifying slow motion and playing on our fears of pandemics it is at once horrifying, touching, and fascinating. King is great at slowly pulling everyday reality apart. The cast of characters who survive this catastrophe is sizeable, diverse, and interesting. A pyromaniac with an array of mental issues, a man with learning disabilities, a singer who was in the act breaking big, others more ordinary but no less fascinating under pressure. The literary institutions of this world sniff at horror writers as much as they do fantasy writers but I find King's prose and insights into the human condition to be as powerful as those in many of the more plodding works of literary fiction I've read. Readers often don't notice it because it's not what they came for. But King is interested in people and how pressure acts on them. “No one can tell what goes on in between the person you were and the person you become. No one can chart that blue and lonely section of hell. There are no maps of the change. You just come out the other side. Or you don't.” King shows us the inception of the disaster, plots its course through his scattered and varied cast, and slowly brings those actors together into two communities in the aftermath. The two communities we focus on centre on the supernatural aspect of the book, one of them is home to the 'good' folk, and the other to the 'bad'. The bad camp is ruled over by Randal Flagg who roams through the pages of quite a few of King's books, The Dark Tower in particular. The book concludes with the fight between these two camps and ultimately the ending was a touch unsatisfying for me, though not awful by any means. The journey to that ending however was a fascinating thrill ride and well worth the price of entry! If you've not tried Stephen King before then this is a fine place to jump in - be warned though, it is perhaps the longest of his books with a page count to rival GRRM at his most long winded. Join my 3-emails-a-year newsletter #prizes

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    The stand , 2001, Stephen King (1947) The Stand is a post-apocalyptic horror/fantasy novel by American author Stephen King. It expands upon the scenario of his earlier short story "Night Surf" and outlines the total breakdown of society after the accidental release of a strain of influenza that had been modified for biological warfare causes an apocalyptic pandemic, which kills off the majority of the world's human population. King dedicated the book to his wife, Tabitha: "For Tabby: This dark ch The stand , 2001, Stephen King (1947) The Stand is a post-apocalyptic horror/fantasy novel by American author Stephen King. It expands upon the scenario of his earlier short story "Night Surf" and outlines the total breakdown of society after the accidental release of a strain of influenza that had been modified for biological warfare causes an apocalyptic pandemic, which kills off the majority of the world's human population. King dedicated the book to his wife, Tabitha: "For Tabby: This dark chest of wonders." تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز یازدهم ماه اکتبر سال 2005 میلادی عنوان: ابلیس؛ اثر: استیون کینگ؛ مترجم: نرسی خلیلی فر؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، واژه آرا، 1383، در دو جلد، 1252 ص، شابک دوره: 9646498566، شابک جلد 1: 9646498647؛ شابک جلد 2: 9646498655؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان آمریکایی قرن 20 م در روز بیست و سوم ژوئن، وحشتی مرگبار سراسر آمریکا را فرامیگیرد. بازماندگان در گورستانی به وسعت دنیا در تلاش برای بقا و در کابوسی دائمی سرگردان هستند. آنها که زنده مانده اند. یا به سوی پیرزنی میروند که نماد خوبی و نیکویی است یا به سمت مردی تاریک، که نماد شیطان است. ا. شربیانی

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ɗẳɳ 2.☊

    I'm sorry but I cannot, in good conscience, give this anything less than 5 stars. Even though there were a few parts that aggravated me--mostly in book 3--the good far exceeded the bad. It took me nearly three weeks to read this 1153 page monster, and amazingly I was never bored with it. Such an epic tale, biblical in scope, with some truly remarkable character development. I'll be remembering this one for a long, long time to come.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.