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The Stand (Signet) by Stephen King – One Of The Greatest Books Of All-Time!

July 26, 2011
The Stand (Signet) by Stephen King

In 1978, science fiction writer Spider Robinson wrote a scathing review of The Stand in which he exhorted his readers to grab strangers in bookstores and beg them not to buy it.

The Stand is like that. You either love it or hate it, but you cant ignore it. Stephen Kings most popular book, according to polls of his fans, is an end-of-the-world scenario: a rapidly mutating flu virus is accidentally released from a U.S. military facility and wipes out 99 and 44/100 percent of the worlds population, thus setting the stage for an apocalyptic confrontation between Good and Evil.

I love to burn things up, King says. Its the werewolf in me, I guess…. The Stand was particularly fulfilling, because there I got a chance to scrub the whole human race, and man, it was fun! … Much of the compulsive, driven feeling I had while I worked on The Stand came from the vicarious thrill of imagining an entire entrenched social order destroyed in one stroke.

There is much to admire in The Stand: the vivid thumbnail sketches with which King populates a whole landscape with dozens of believable characters; the deep sense of nostalgia for things left behind; the way it subverts our sense of reality by showing us a world we find familiar, then flipping it over to reveal the darkness underneath. Anyone who wants to know, or claims to know, the heart of the American experience needs to read this book. –Fiona Webster

Read It 3 Times!!
I realize I wont be the first to say this is a great novel. Nor will I tell you it is Kings greatest work. The latter point is because I have always been intimidated by the length of his novels. The Stand, his lengthiest, is the first of his novels that I have read. Well, maybe I should say I got immersed into this fantasy-scifi-horror!

His nonfiction I have raced through and learned a great deal from.

His novels are long and, since I watch the movies made from his books where commitment is needed. Okay, I am mentally lazy and a skin flint with my time, mostly because Im getting near retirement and my eyes aint what they once was. Less commitment though produces less fulfillment as The Stand proves.

With my Kindle, however, I find great joy in reading again and when I increase font sizes so I can read without squinting, plus and not have to lug a tree around, I decided to tackle Kings massive work while carpooling in North Africa.

Man, I gotta tell you, I am sure glad I never read the original or even this version until nearly eight years after 9 11.

The Twin Towers puts such a new perspective on things that even an old codger whose seen most everything can go on the quest against evil. This book is so superior to any other of its genre(s). Without feeding on stereotypes and hate between religions, cultures, races and such, King keeps the fight simple. Good versus evil. Science versus Faith. All without dogma!

This is better written even than Lord of the Rings, a five star in its own right, and has such great character development and romance that is missing from most works of the fantasy genre! (Several titles written by Michael A. Stackpole excepted.)

It has suspense and action every bit as solid as any tome by Ludlum et al.

It also has great philosophical messages strung throughout that forces the reader, me at least, to set the book aside and contemplate religion, science, and precisely what it is mankind is on this rock to do. That momentary pause prompted by this novel helps me grow just as the characters who come to life in this gem.

I only wish and pray we could get an equally in-depth sequel set, say, in the year 2196. Such a classic would probably need to run at least 1,000 to 1,500 pages also. With a Kindle and other such media, though, thered be no guilt trip.

As many readers of my reviews might note, I am a writer of nonfiction. I am working to produce a series of historical adventure novels covering the period 1750 to 2000.

The quality of my writing will never turn heads nor woo critics. Well enough. Still, if I write fiction that brings only a fraction of the pleasure to my readers as King has brought me in The Stand, I will consider myself successful.

Oh, and I am now going to tackle his most recent Kindle-specific book, Ur, and then follow that with several of his others in between Stackpoles fantasys and some nonfiction pieces prodeuced for Kindle by Paula Berinstein – C. William Anderson, also known as Travis C. Ward.

Happy reading!

For More 5 Star Reviews and The Lowest Price Visit:
The Stand (Signet) by Stephen King

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