Monday, January 05, 2015
The Stand by Stephen King
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A man who worked in a U.S. biological testing facility escapes from because he notices something is wrong. He manages to get to his family and tell them to run away, without knowing he was infected by a mutated virus of the flu. It is a shape-shifting virus, which makes it more deadly –with a 99.4% of effectivity. So that's how most of humanity dies. And that is just the beginning. Then the supernatural plot is introduced. The survivors start having dreams about two figures: Mother Abagail and Randall Flagg aka The Dark Man. The ones who are “good” are attracted to the first one; and the ones who are “bad” are attracted to the latter one.
And so starts this battle between good and evil. I first thought this was going to be just about the superflu and its consequences, but I was wrong with that. I mean, before I started reading it, I was always wondering: “Why the hell would 1400+ be needed for just finding the cure to a disease? Isn't that way too much?”. But at the time, I had no idea that the superflu is just the antecedent to the real story.
You know what enriched my experience reading this book? That I got sick. Yep, I got the flu. It made me feel like living the book. I was horrified. Now, everytime I hear someone coughing or sneezing I get scared, and I guess my fear is justified, after reading this book. And you know what's worse? Dreaming about it. When I get very immersed in a book, I cannot bring it out of my mind, and I usually dream about what happened. You can guess what I dreamed about: A dark man with no face and red eyes who is chasing me. It gave me the creeps.
I loved the characters in the book and how they felt very realistic. Very few books have characters that you can easily relate to or are so well written that they seem real, even when you know they are not.
Speaking about “well written”...the writing! AMAZING. M-O-O-N, that spells amazing, as someone in the book would say. It is fully detailed, and I love detailed descriptions. It was pretty vivid –I could, with no difficulty, imagine I was in there, listening to the characters discussions.
And the ending was just as great as the whole story itself. Many books can have a great plot, and a great middle, but the majority of them fall because of the ending, which may be precipitated and fake. In this one, that is not the case. I think it ended just as it should have, with its message and its somewhat loose end.
Finally, I highly recommend this book. Of all the books I own, this one (along with Wuthering Heights –and please, don't compare them, for they are not similar at all) is my favorite (which does not mean it is my favorite book of all time). It is certainly one of my favorites. I will keep reading more of Mr. King's books, and I hope he doesn't disappoint me. So, what are you waiting for? Go read this tale of dark Christianity, as Mr. King said in his preface.
P.S.: This book strangely reminded me to Moses' story in the Bible. The Exodus and all that. I guess you know what I'm talking about, if you don't, then look for it. Am I the only one?
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