Book reviews / Science Fiction

Book review: The Stand

What a bunch of bullshit.

So the plot starts out as plague wipes out humanity and then turns into some mystical bollocks about a show down between good an evil. Perhaps if I wasn’t an atheist I would find it less awful, but as I am an atheist, I found the anti-intellectual, anti-progress, anti-rationalist twaddle just a bit too much to stomach.


Also, there was the whole uncomfortable nature of the book seeming quite sexist, racist and ableist. Almost every time there was a minority, a racial epithet would be used to describe them. There were a couple characters who had disabilities and they were described equally as awful but most people they meet.

Maybe you can argue that it is the individual characters and not the author speaking – but then why make everyone racist and horrible? I dunno.

Then there was this sort of nonsense: “Women’s lib, Frannie had decided, was nothing more nor less than an outgrowth of the technological society.” Ugggh. It gets worse as well. Just as cringeworthy as in Lucifer’s Hammer.

Also inconsistent, as another woman agrees to spy on the bad guys and largely succeeds. When she’s finally caught, she tries to stab the evil bad guy and when she can’t, violently kills herself to not reveal her friends.

There’s also the weird thing of Nadine Cross and what seems like her being raped by a demon. It was more than unpleasant. Basically, this book isn’t very kind to women – those who aren’t main characters come across as vapid. I think it could fail the test on point 3. They may have some main characters but they really don’t do anything. Maybe Mother Abigail could be considered powerful but I don’t think she is in the end. She’s used by God in a shitty way.

I hated all the religious nonsense. I hated the idea that they sent people out to be a sacrifice to God. I hated the irrationality. I disliked the very end of the book when they’ve won and two of the main characters decide to leave the burgeoning civilisation because of some bullshit reasons. Two people who just survived a breach birth and resetting a broken leg. It’s just so bullshit. You wouldn’t leave. But there you go, stupid irrationality.

I hated the length. So much time spent on the minutest of details that in the end didn’t matter at all. Stretching out each individual plot point to an excruciating long tail-end. I can’t believe they’ve tacked on another 400 pages for the uncut version. I think this could have had 400 page more cut out.

Basically, this isn’t worth the time spent reading it. Read something else. 0/5 for irrationality and length.

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