So I'm almost finished the 1980 version of the book (I'm about 80 pages out from the end.) I was determined to wait until finishing it fully but just can't wait to post about it. Overall I love it! I can definitely see where stuff was cut, though; it makes a few sections seem abrupt or confusing as a result.
Some random thoughts (not a thorough analysis, just weird things that came to mind as reading):
-I LOVE the Watership Down references, and that it's one of the few books that Stu Redman has ever even read, much less enjoyed. I don't think I can gush enough about it.
-Kojak! There's an Incredible Journey story nestled within this apocalyptic horror novel, and I love it.
-On the subject of Kojak, Irish setters seem unusually immune to it for the two known surviving dogs to belong to that breed- but then they might have been a much more common breed in the late '70s than they are today.
-So the number of Stephen King books I've read so far is smaller than I'd like, but among the ones I have read I've noticed that alcoholic characters often come to rather bad ends. This is unfortunate as I have a certain soft spot for such characters when they're basically good people with a bad problem (as you might guess from my posts about a certain character on the 'Salem's Lot board) and I'd kind of adopted the affable and, while not entirely harmless, certainly not malicious Rich Moffat as my favorite background character- but his death was just so random! Poor Rich. It feels weird to mourn one nearly inconsequential character's death in a novel where most of humanity dies, but it caught me totally by surprise and honestly felt a bit gratuitous, especially so soon after major character deaths. The fact that people were probably still reeling from those deaths and that the thing that killed him was an otherwise positive thing for the community probably left his passing largely unremarked even in the Free Zone. (Again, poor Rich.) It's pretty much the only thing in the book that's left a sour note with me.
So yeah, my commentary isn't very insightful but I'm fairly certain most of the insightful things about this book have already been said over the decades, anyway. I'll finish it within the next day or so (having seen the miniseries, I pretty much know how it ends) and will definitely read the uncut version to see how it changes the way the story reads- I think I'll be taking a break with lighter fare for a bit though, as reading is an emotionally full contact sport for me and I'm going to need to recharge. Thank you again for the input!
So, at the risk of losing my Fan Card, I've never actually read The Stand. (I have seen the TV miniseries.) I currently have both a copy of the 1980 version and the 1990 "uncut" one and am not sure if I should read the '80 one (which the miniseries was technically based on) and save the uncut version for later down the road, or if I should just jump into the uncut one. As I am currently going through a massive backlog of books to read so I can donate them (because it actually is possible to have too many books- when all of your shelves are sagging because you have books piled on top of each other, additional stacks on the floor and no more room in the house for another bookcase, you have to ask yourself some hard questions) I am thinking I will read the '80 version first so it can be donated and hold onto the uncut one for later (as I will likely keep that one, anyway.) My question for the forum, though, is whether there is a great enough difference between versions to justify reading both, or if it's just a matter of dates and some pop culture references in addition to the expanded material. Does anyone have some insight on this?
The Stand was my first King book. I was excited when the other 500 pages came out. Couldn't wait. Then I read it and there was a reason someone decided to take them out. There was only one character introduced and I don't think he made it. Since you already have the uncut one, might as well. I've been having dreams about Mother Abigail since last November and I hope to see you in Nebraska soon.