Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Stand by Stephen King, Padfoot's Lament

Ok first, I just want to say, please do not toilet paper my house or put my hand in warm water or anything you crazy kids do these days. But just be prepared, The Stand lovers, to hear my severe disappointment with the book.


First, a short synopsis of the plot:

A super-virus created by the government is accidently released by one of its employees. About 99% of the entire population is wiped out, and the remaining survivors are brought together by similar dreams of an old black lady. They eventually meet in Boulder, Colorado, and begin to rebuild their lives. At the same time, they’ve been having dreams about a “dark man” who is building his empire in Las Vegas. There is a gradual split between the survivors, into “good” and “evil” groups. The rest of the novel is a showdown between these two groups, and it all ends with a bang.

I have had at least a million people recommend this book to me. Wait, not really recommend, but something more dramatic like “READ THIS BOOK YOU WILL LOVE IT FOREVER.” Also known as the best Stephen King novel of all time.

Well…I don’t get it.

The first 200-300 pages were EXCELLENT! I loved the eeriness of the plague, the wonder of “what is this, what the hell is going on?” But that just seemed to be ruined when the dreams came into play. The whole religious theme just didn’t seem to fit. I think it should have gone in another direction…

And the ending?!? Don’t even get me started…

That’s all I have to say right now; this isn’t really a review but a discussion. I want to hear some of your thoughts, let’s discuss amongst ourselves!

-mischief managed-


  1. I really enoyed it overall and I agree that the first 300 pages were the best, I thought the whole set up was very well done.

    I thought the dreams bit were fine and made it more of a 'horror' book, esp the bits with the wolves and other animals. The bit that bored me in this section were when the characters spent forever just wandering around New England.

    The ending - I agree but then Mr King does lame endings sometimes so I think I was prepared.

  2. The dreams are a psychological element. As they travel, they are not always within physical proximity of "evil"; however it can enter their dreams adding to the "you can't hide from your destiny" message. King uses it as a method of communication to unify the different groups.
    Goodness Padfoot, I do not begrudge you your opinion. Reading is a highly personal and unique experience. I respect your opinion!

  3. @Jessica I guess I would have liked the dreams more if they had led to a better ending.

    Yea Prongs has warned me about King Endings...So I wasn't TOO surprised.

    But I just had such high hopes!

    @Mystic I did like the idea that you really were not safe anywhere you went, since they were haunted in their dreams.

    But they just didn't seem to fit with the rest of the story, I felt like I read two different books.

    That's true, I'm just pretty surprised I didn't like it, seemed right up my alley!

    Thanks :D

  4. I am not a Stephen King fan, so when a student shoved this book at me and said read, I had serious reservations. Having said that though, I liked it--up until the ending. I still think it was bizarre and freaky in a unique kind of way. I'm not a big reader of King's work though, nor other books like this, so I can't really speak to what he did or didn't do. I will say that it's awfully similar to The Passage by Justin Cronin, that came out last year.

  5. @Becky,The Passage does have whisperings of The Stand on a some level. For me The Stand is the best King book I've read thus far. I think you either love it, or you don't. I love it!

  6. One thing I did really enjoy was the character development. Although it seemed pretty in-depth, I thought it was well done.

  7. All of Kings epic books,(and I say epic because of the length of them),have outstanding character development. It's one of the things I love most about them. If you haven't guessed, I'm a huge SK nerd;)He's my favorite author, along with Bradbury.

  8. That was definitely something I liked about the book.

    Well as always Babycakes, you have excellent taste in authors :)

    P.S.!!! I just heard that they are making a movie of The Stand!! So crazy! I wonder if it will be any good?

    I recently watched the made for tv miniseries and hated it haha

  9. Yeah the tv series was horrible. I didn't know they were making a movie of The Stand, but I am aware of the tv series/big screen makings of The Dark Tower series. They are supposed to coincide with each other. They are being directed by Ron Howard. Check it out here....


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