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The Stand
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Zarathustra
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After giving up on Talisman, I've skipped right to The Stand. I intended to save it for last (prior to DT), but I needed something that had a better chance of being good after my disappointment.

I made the right choice! This book is awesome, right from page 1. I don't think I've read another King book that was so effortless to read. It's cliché, but I literally could not put it down last night. I'm very sleepy today. Laughing

I'm reading the big, fat, 1500 page version. Without reading through this thread (to avoid spoilers), can anyone weigh in on the differences between the two versions? Did I make the right choice? Is this one better, or just longer? Does size matter, or is it just how you use it? Laughing
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 3:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's better. It's adapted to be more current (to whatever year the expansion was published), there's a bunch more character development with Trashy and The Kid, there are more vignettes of the spread of the flu, some more stuff with Larry in NYC, and a few other things that I'm sure someone else will fill in.

In all, they're worthwhile additions. They add to the already impressive texture of the story. They make a seriously long book unbelievably long, but it's so well-written that it doesn't matter.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

M-O-O-N, that spells "I don't understand how there could be a shorter version of The Stand" ...laws, yes.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2015 5:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wait, they published an updated, expanded version? I've only read the original abridged and unabridged versions.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2015 3:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

According to Wikipedia, it looks like the expanded version was updated from a 1980s setting to 1990s. Pop culture references were also updated to reflect this. So there's only the one expanded version, and the updates were apparently too subtle to notice, I suppose.
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 05, 2015 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Cail: Better.
Even the first version of "The Stand" King at his best, and the upgrade was
really an upgrade--for once King's bloat tendency produced extra meat, not just excess fat.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2015 5:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm in two minds...not happy at all about his retcon of DT1. Is this any different?

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2015 5:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Av, I think this expanded edition is the same as the unabridged edition. I hope others will correct me if I'm wrong.

According to wikipedia:

Quote:
The novel was originally published in 1978 and was later re-released in 1990 as The Stand: The Complete & Uncut Edition; King restored some text originally cut for brevity, added and revised sections, changed the setting of the story from 1980 (which in turn was changed to 1984 for the original paperback release in 1980) to 1990, and updated a few pop culture references accordingly.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2015 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I assume you're right, Menolly. That was the same Wikipedia info I was talking about.

So the DT1 retcon sucks? I've got (and read) the original, but I was considering getting the updated version. Does everyone agree the original is better?
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2015 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarathustra wrote:
I assume you're right, Menolly. That was the same Wikipedia info I was talking about.

So the DT1 retcon sucks? I've got (and read) the original, but I was considering getting the updated version. Does everyone agree the original is better?
I've only read the revised version, and I did not see anything wrong with it... not the normal "Dude, I don't like the Gunslinger" crap you normally hear, anyway.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06, 2015 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not a huge difference in the "new" Gunslinger. King updated it to work better with the evolving DT universe.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2015 6:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is it the updated The Gunslinger that adds all the "19" stuff? I seem to remember in my Fresh Journey thread Av making a comment it wasn't in the original. And I don't remember it from the serialized version I read in my daddy's collection of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. But I think it was in the novel version I read when I started my Journey...
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2015 4:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, the "19" was added.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, he went back and made it look as though something which only came in relatively late in the series had been significant from the beginning.

Never read it myself since I always had the original novel, but the principle annoys me.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2015 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Many books would be done or winding down after 350 pages. King is still doing Act I. Laughing

And it rocks. This is King at his best. I hope the remaining 1100 pages are as good. Shocked Laughing
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 12, 2015 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarathustra wrote:
Many books would be done or winding down after 350 pages. King is still doing Act I. Laughing

And it rocks. This is King at his best. I hope the remaining 1100 pages are as good. Shocked Laughing
Then hope in vain! Razz
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I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, The Stand is brilliant. Very Happy

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've only read the uncut version of The Stand. I thought it was pretty good, though.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like when Tom Cullen sees the full moon rising over Vegas, his signal to leave Flagg's followers and head back to the good people in Boulder, he says, "M-O-O-N, that spells.." and for once gets it right. Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2015 3:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nearly 900 pages in, and I'm not bored yet. However, I can see why his editors suggested cutting it. I think it would have been better if King had focused on fewer scenes, but making them more powerful. Too many scenes in this book are merely okay. Arguing about who's going to be on a committee makes for some tedious reading.

It's ironic that even with 1400+ pages, the characters don't seem all that fleshed out. I don't think it's really a problem of too many characters--for christsake, 1400 pages! You could deeply explore dozens of characters in that space. It's more a problem of King telling rather than showing. Harold would work so much better as a character if he actually did something to illustrate what everyone else is saying about him in their diaries or conversations. I did like the detail of him practicing smiling in his mirror for 15 minutes. That was cool. That's what I'm talking about, actions like that. Perhaps it would have been better if King didn't give away so much, e.g. Harold reading Fran's diary. Just show the change in him and let the other characters (and readers) wonder. Then the reveal of the chocolate stain in her diary would have more impact. More fear.

Also, all the sociological observations that Glen makes are fascinating, but they read more like the plot outline of the book I'd like to read. King should have showed all those things, rather than have one character say them all, as if he were reading King's own notes for a cool story idea. Perhaps if King had spent less time on their uneventful travels, he could have done this.

But it's still good. Just not great. Maybe the last 500 pages will get better. That's enough for a whole other book! Plenty of time for anything to happen.
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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