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I Am Legend

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Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. Robert Neville may well be the last living man on Earth . . . but he is not alone. An incurable plague has mutated every other man, woman, and child into bloodthirsty, nocturnal creatures who are...

Customer Reviews

6 ratings

Amazing

This novella, and the stories in the back of the book, keep you guessing as to what may happen next and continuously blows you away with action and a great plot. The whole thing is a page turner, I couldn't put it down. And the ending gave me shivers. Completely recommend to anyone looking for action, suspense, a little science and great character development.

I won't stay long in this world so wrong

Robert Neville is he who strives for perfection, he whose goal is to soar among the stars with the angels on high; Neville is the man who, despite everything, has fallen into the eternal charnel pit of the soul. The bleakest and farthest regions of the dismal are his and his alone. How then did Neville come to this winter of discontent? How then did he, who sought the beautiful, become the ugly? His lustrous silver wings melted in the shining sun that he blindly mistook for redemption and when it was too late to save himself he fell like a beautiful yet poignantly destructive shooting star plummeting to earth in a ball of unquenchable fire. In the latter days of the latter years hidden in the home of his oblivion, he has come full circle pondering over the joys and the discontents of a "normal" life that like the best of fiction is so believable yet so totally alien. Yes, truly he is Icarus dying, the embodiment of dead hopes and dreams and the paragon of destruction. Yes, truly he is the aching longing that will never be fulfilled, the imagined sound of a loved one calling in the midst of a dream. He, and he alone, is the bright and shining hope that failed. He is alive in body only for the soul has fled. Is he any better than the living dead that haunt him so, the mythical vampires who, sadly, turned out to be so real? Those miserable souls of legend that were tortured into an eternity desiring to be with their brethren yet destroying all those who were near. In a dead and howling world, Neville is all that survives to remember what civilization was once like before the virus came, the mysterious virus that turned the world into a legend. In this sea of pain, Neville must make his way alone embracing the eternal solitude amongst the wailings of the damned, but the vampires have a little surprise for Neville that might just change everything. Fly Neville, fly on your beautiful wings and touch the sun before you fall to earth, incinerated and desolate. Goodbye Neville. . . I Am Legend is a poignant narrative conducted by the forlorn Neville, the only man left standing among the charred ruins of a formerly grand civilization . . . our civilization. All those that have gone before him have returned only they are not the same. They want blood for sustenance and in the deepest pits of the night they await Neville, their eternal hunger gnawing away at their humanity. And so, Neville's long journey through the bleak passages of the heart begins and we, the public of readers, join Neville wishing that we could reach out and grant him comfort because Neville's forced loneliness, his desire to see another human, his desire for his dead wife, is truly heart wrenching making the desolate, apocalyptic aura of the book come alive filling the reader's heart and soul with Neville's undying pain. Neville is a narrator that demands sympathy. The author's emulation of a classical, gothic horror style requires the audience to understand Neville's mental degener

Obviously You Are Interested In Vampires and Zombies...

SO BUY THIS BOOK! This is where it all started. The pioneering work that later inspired George Romero's "Night Of The Living Dead" and Stephen King's "Salem's Lot" and every other tale of a normal human being fighting against the odds in a world gone mad with the hungry hordes of the undead. Matheson, a TV writer (most notable work, "The Twilight Zone"), places us in a world where a mysterious virus has not only killed off virtually ever other man, woman and child but causes them to return as zombielike vampires intent on only one thing... to drain the blood of the living. Matheson's hero holds up in his old family home, now a battered fortress assaulted nightly by what were once his friends and neighbors and who have become the walking dead intent on taking hold and devouring him. He, in turn, waits until the morning light and searches out there hiding places in order to destroy the revenants when they are at their most vulnerable. A one man army, who is patiently, skillfully ridding his world of this vermin. Fortunately, in one of his sweeps he finds that there is another who is doing the same thing. He is not alone in the world afterall. Unfortunately, this other wants to destroy him as well. Matheson wrote a thinking man's horror novel. He touches on that feeling of alienation and loneliness that pervades so much of our modern world. A world that places us as pawns, used (and often victimised) by the science and technologies of our own creation. However, Matheson also inspires in the reader a feeling of hope and fighting back even if the odds are staggeringly against us. He appeals to the survivalist instincts that every healthy, normal man and woman possess. He builds the anger in us to strike back and overcome the menace to our existence. Two movies made were based on "I Am Legend": "The Last Man On Earth", starring Vincent Price and the classic, "Omega Man", starring Charleton Heston. Neither of these came close to the quality of this novel. This book is essential reading and keeping for every horror fan, especially us zombie fanatics. Now go order this book!

A vampire novel second only to Stoker's

I am Legend is arguably the greatest short horror novel ever written, and its influence on the horror genre has been profound. Stephen King and many other of today's masters rank this book highly in their personal top ten lists of favorites. It is a short novel that can be read in one sitting; it is hard to put down, building in intensity from start to finish. Matheson creates an entirely new type of vampire fiction herein. Transcending the traditional vampire tale, he adds science fiction elements to produce a refreshing new interpretation of Stoker's legend. The most fascinating part of the story is the protagonist's (Richard Neville's) attempts to explain the legendary aspects of the vampire myth in scientific terms. His discovery of a bacterium, which he dubs vampiris, as the true source of vampirism struck me anew reading the novel again after the events of September 11, 2001. Although we only get pieces of the story regarding the outbreak of the vampiric plague, including a reference to bombings, it can easily be seen as the fruits of germ warfare. Neville even conjectures that the Black Death of the Middle Ages was caused by this same vampiris germ, and he extrapolates facts and ideas from that history in his attempts to understand why such defenses as garlic, crosses, and stakes driven into the heart actually are effective against the hordes of undead creatures menacing his own time. He studies academic texts and conducts experiments with the blood of these creatures, which is the means by which he identifies the bacterium. The essence of garlic has no effect on the germ when injected into a blood sample, which initially he is unable to explain, but he later is able to explain garlic's effectiveness. Less scientific tests lead him to conclude that crosses are only effective against "Christian" vampires; the cross has no meaning to for vampires who were once Jews and Moslems, but sacred symbols of those religions, such as the Torah and the Koran, do. All of these scientific tests and speculations are just fascinating.Neville is essentially the last man on earth, and the loneliness of his situation is the central part of the story. Matheson is able to communicate Neville's emotional feelings vividly, making him very real. We gradually acquire the story of the deaths of Neville's wife and daughter, essentially experiencing the pain he goes through when these memories overcome him. We watch him drink himself into a stupor as each night finds him besieged in his fortified house, surrounded by vampires, including his old friend and neighbor, calling for him to come out. We watch him slowly lose his grip on sanity and come very close to giving up. Then, however, we watch him overcome his depression and courageously fight to live in the nightmare world he is trapped in. The scenes with the dog he finds are full of emotion and really gripped this reader. This is Neville's first contact with nonvampiric life, and his attempts to

I Am Legend

This novel, although short, is absolutely outstanding.While this book is advertised as one of the best vampire novels of all time, it is really not about the vampires at all, but about a man. This is the story of what one man can endure, what his limits are, how much he can accept, and what will happen when he goes too far.Yes, there are vampires in the book, and yes, he does hunt them by day, but it's not an action story; the suspense is more pyschological. This is also one of the more different vampire books you will ever read.Somewhat short and written precisely, words are not wasted here, and the beauty and simplicity of the language is part of the appeal that this book holds. Robert Neville is an amazingly real character, and the ending of this book is perfect. While I have not yet read the multiple other stories by Matheson in this volume, I Am Legend alone is worth the cover price.

I Am Legend, A Masterpiece from a Legendary Author!

A long time ago, I saw "The Omega Man" and liked it so much that I sought out the book it was adapted from. "I Am Legend" was nothing like the Charlton Heston movie, but it was the best damn vampire novel I had ever read. Since reading the book, I have collected all of Richard Matheson's other novels and short story collections, but "I Am Legend" remains my personal favorites. Robert Neville's struggle to survive in a world of vampires robs him of his humanity, transforming him into a legndary boogyman, who stalks and murders the planet's new nocturnal citizens as they sleep. No true horror fan should go without reading this landmark novel. Matheson always leaves his readers wanting more, which is more than can be said for most of the post Stephen King bloated bestsellers.

I Am Legend and Other Stories Mentions in Our Blog

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