Sunday, 11 October 2009

I Am Legend by Richard Matheson
An SF novel about vampires . . . Robert Neville is the last living man on Earth . . . but he is not alone. Every other man, woman and child on the planet has become a vampire, and they are hungry for Neville's blood. By day he is the hunter, stalking the undead through the ruins of civilisation. By night, he barricades himself in his home and prays for the dawn. How long can one man survive like this?

This was kind of like a zombie book. These vampires are nothing like the Twilight vampires. They are mindless killers much more like the Dawn of the Dead zombies.

I saw the movie a while ago and it was okay. I like Will Smith and I found the story interesting enough. I figured I'd give the book a read and see if it was better than the movie.

Actually, it was much better than the movie. Hollywood made a lot of major changes to the script - almost so many that you wouldn't necessarily connect the movie with the book if they didn't have the same title!

As much as I really enjoyed the story, I found myself a bit disappointed because of the twist at the end. If you read it you will know what I mean. I really liked the beginning and Robert Neville's struggle being the only man left on earth. That was fascinating. I would have enjoyed 300+ pages devoted to Neville's struggle to keep sane in his bizarre situation. I really enjoyed the last half of the book and wanted to see how it was going to play out. The book has 317 pages so I was really geared up for a good, long read. However, when I hit page 170 I discovered that the story had finished. The rest of the book includes a variety of Matheson's short horror stories. In fact the horror stories are quiet good, but I had wanted more of I Am Legend. Oh well.

If you like horror or zombie stories, you'll enjoy this one. I Am Legend was published in 1954 so I think we can consider it as one of the first books of its kind. Even just for that, you can feel like you are biting into a bit of horror story history.


3.5/5 Stars

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