Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Book Review: The Stand Graphic Novel

The Stand is an epic apocalyptic tale, considered by many to be King's masterpiece. It tells the story of good vs evil, light vs dark. Following the outbreak of a virus dubbed "Captain Trips", the world is plagued by death. It is up to a number of survivors to overcome the encroaching darkness that is the Dark Man, Randall Flagg. This graphic novel is an adaptation of King's masterpiece novel.

"The place where you made your stand never mattered. Only that you were there...and still on your feet."

The Stand was the third King book I read, I believe... so that was a few years ago now. It used to be that when I thought about it or discussed it on bookstagram, I always felt like I just never loved it as much as everyone else seemed to. But after reading this graphic novel, I feel like it's just bad memory that made me feel this way, because this story is just epic.

The character development and story progression is simply outstanding in this book. King has created a plethora of characters that are all memorable in their own ways. Just think about how many amazing characters we meet here... Stu Redman, Tom Cullen, Nick Andros, Randall Flagg, Nadine Cross, Harold Lauder, Frannie Goldsmith, Glen Bateman, The Trashcan Man... I could go on. Each name is instantly recognisable and to obtain such a calibre of characters within ONE STORY is just unprecedented.

What could be said about The Stand that hasn't been said already? It's terrifying because it's something that could happen. Flu and viruses are something we all encounter quite regularly, and labs are constantly experimenting. The premise that a man-made virus could come along and wipe out 99.4% of the population literally makes me want to run and hide under the covers and never leave my house again.

As for the graphic novel itself, the illustrations are STUNNING. Out of this world. I would find myself just sitting and staring at different illustrations, completely distracted from the story. The characters are exactly how I picture them in my head, and in particular, the illustrations of Randall Flagg are incredible. The portrayal of how he attracts his followers and appeared to them in their dreams was pretty damn scary. I'd much rather have encountered old Mother Abigail when I hit the hay.

I've really started to get into graphic novels this year and this is my favourite so far. An absolutely outstanding adaptation of this epic novel, worth every penny I spent on it. 5 stars out of 5 from me!


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