The Stand

Stephen King
Reading Order: Book 65
Categories: 2020, Stuart Browning
The Stand
Pages: 1007
Date Finished: December 10, 2020
Reason Book was Chosen: I've always enjoyed Stephen King’s novels and I have quite a lot already on my bookshelf. I’ve therefore decided to read them all in publication order (skipping the ones I’ve read in the last couple of years: Gwendy’s Button Box, Carrie, In Tall Glass, The Shining and Doctor Sleep). King's 4th published novel first released in 1997 (I've missed out Rage also published in 1997 as I'll be reading that as part of the Bachman Books omnibus later on and Night Shift a collection of short stories because I can't find my copy!) This version is the complete uncut edition which was published in 1990.
My Thoughts

I loved it. You probably think it’s a bit weird reading a novel about a virus sweeping through the United States while there’s a real global pandemic going on but it was worth it. I surprisingly didn’t know that The Stand was centered around a plot of this nature maybe I should have read the blurb? Truth be told it’s not really about the virus, it’s more about how the survivors cope, form relationships and group together to create new societies in a post-apocalyptic world. Obviously with a lot of King’s novels there is a Supernatural element to it and I love how he uses the dream world as a way of pulling the characters together, it’s a really good vs. evil story with Mother Abigail and The Dark Man representing each side respectively and I really enjoyed every aspect of it.

Initially I thought this version was just an uncut edition and got confused when I started to see references to things that occurred after 1978. I then read that “King restored some fragments of texts that were initially reduced, revised the order of the chapters, shifted the novel’s setting from 1980 to 10 years forward, and accordingly corrected a number of cultural references.” I’m therefore going to add the original 1978 version to one of my reading lists in the future as I’d like to see how these changes affected the storytelling.

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