I’m a big Stephen King fan. I’ve read a lot of his work. My favorites are probably his short story collections; Skeleton Crew, Night Shift, Four Past Midnight, etc.
As for his regular novels, I’ve read several, but my favorites would probably be Eyes of the Dragon and Misery. However, I had never conquered what is considered King’s magnum opus. I had never read The Stand. I can’t tell you why I never read it. There is probably a bit of intimidation in there, but nonetheless, it remained a hole in my King reading. I think it was my reading of The Gunslinger that kept me from reading The Stand. I hated The Gunslinger, but that’s a tale for another time.
Then Trish from Love, Laughter and Insanity decided to start up The Standalong. It was a group read-a-long of King’s The Stand. I thought, if I’m ever going to read this book, then it needs to be NOW. So I signed up and started reading the book on June 3. Here are my thoughts.
First the good, because I don’t want to just bitch. The book was well written with well written characters. There are many parts I found fascinating like the spread of Captain Trips, the devolution of society as it realizes everyone is dying. The rebuilding of society in the Boulder Free Zone. Flagg’s Las Vegas community. Those all were interesting and I enjoyed reading about them. However, the main fault of the book is that it’s too damn long.
I read the uncut version. I thought if I’m going to read this book, then I’ll read the original “author’s vision”. The uncut edition paperback I have is 1138 pages long. 1138 pages. I was reading it for the entire month of June. I had to stop around page 700 to read two other books as an intermission because, like I said, this book is just too damn long. It’s exhausting to read, especially considering the type of story.