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Publisher's Summary

This is the way the world ends: with a nanosecond of computer error in a Defense Department laboratory and a million casual contacts that form the links in a chain letter of death.

And here is the bleak new world of the day after: a world stripped of its institutions and emptied of 99 percent of its people. A world in which a handful of panicky survivors choose sides - or are chosen. A world in which good rides on the frail shoulders of the 108-year-old Mother Abagail - and the worst nightmares of evil are embodied in a man with a lethal smile and unspeakable powers: Randall Flagg, the dark man.

In 1978, Stephen King published The Stand, the novel that is now considered to be one of his finest works. But as it was first published, The Stand was incomplete, since more than 150,000 words had been cut from the original manuscript.

Now Stephen King's apocalyptic vision of a world blasted by plague and embroiled in an elemental struggle between good and evil has been restored to its entirety. The Stand: The Complete and Uncut Edition includes material previously deleted, along with new material that King added as he reworked the manuscript for a new generation. It gives us new characters and endows familiar ones with new depths. It has a new beginning and a new ending. What emerges is a gripping work with the scope and moral complexity of a true epic.

For hundreds of thousands of fans who heard The Stand in its original version and wanted more, this new edition is Stephen King's gift. And those who are listening to The Stand for the first time will discover a triumphant and eerily plausible work of the imagination that takes on the issues that will determine our survival.

Cover artwork ©2020 CBS Interactive Inc.

©1978 Stephen King (P)2012 Random House

Critic Reviews

"A master storyteller." (Los Angeles Times)

"[The Stand] has everything. Adventure. Romance. Prophecy. Allegory. Satire. Fantasy. Realism. Apocalypse. Great!" (The New York Times Book Review)

"As brilliant a dark dream as has ever been dreamed in this century." (Palm Beach Post)

Featured Article: We're Your #1 Fans—A Stephen King Character Guide


With a mind-boggling portfolio of 62 novels and more than 200 short stories (and counting!), Stephen King undeniably reigns supreme over literary horror. From Danny Torrance to the dreaded Pennywise, check out some of his most iconic characters with this comprehensive look. (But beware: there are spoilers ahead! So, much like when you press play on a Stephen King audiobook, you should proceed with caution.)

What listeners say about The Stand

Average Customer Ratings
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A Masterpiece

The Stand is one of my favorites novels of all times! I absolutely love this tale of epic proportions written by the amazing Best-selling and Award-winning author Stephen King.

If you pick up The Stand you'll be pulled into a world filled with lifelike characters, vivid descriptions and unsettling events. Weaving drama with fantasy and paranormal, the author manages to deliver a riveting story that will delight generations of readers and listeners.

The audiobook version of The Stand by Stephen King is brought to life in a stellar performance by Grover Gardner, an acclaimed narrator with a lot of prestigious awards to his name. Mr. Gardner is the perfect choice for this adventure in which the forces of Good and Evil face-off and make their Stand in an unforgettable battle.

With such a talented narrator at the helm, this audio production is the perfect example for why audiobooks are better than regular books. Although the almost 48 hours duration might seem a daunting endeavour for some listeners, you'll breeze through it without keeping track of time. Trust me, I listened to it twice, so far...

No words on paper can be more alive than a heartfelt performance...

The Stand is one of the best and most immersive narrative experiences that I listened to and I listened to more than 1,200 of them... Trust me, this is a book you'll never forget!

If you liked this review please vote Helpful below and find more of them here and on theAudiobookBlog.
I also post honest reviews at the author, narrator, or publisher's request, you can get in touch with me for more details.

Thank you & stay safe,
Victor

397 people found this helpful

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Man this was long.. but man was this worth it!!

47 hours. I listen mainly on the way too and from work. This took almost two months to finish. There were times that I was ready for it to be over.. but then something so poignant and superbly written would be read by Grover Gardner and I was in love with the book all over again. I know that King wanted this to be his "Lord of the Rings", his epic tale of the fight between good and evil and it was thrilling and gripping and left me laughing and smiling and loving the characters. I loved how well Grover Gardner narrated the different voices for the characters. He truly is one of the best out there. And every time Tom Cullens says, "Laws yes", I had to smile. Fantastic book. Don't give up on it- go on the journey, you won't regret it!

146 people found this helpful

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King at his best and worst

Story starts off great. Good world, great characters. About half way through the book the story completely falls apart. King is completely focused on his characters and lets the narrative fall apart. Ends up being unreadable. There is no narrative holding the world together. It is just an initial world and some characters run amok. It feels like King had no idea how the book was going to end. He just had an initial premise and some interesting characters, put them together and wrote the book chapter by chapter. I am all about character development, but without a good STORY to place the characters into, a book becomes an exercise in character development rather than an interesting piece of fiction. Terrible book.

85 people found this helpful

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My First Completed Stephen King Novel

Before I get into my review, I have to say I've been terribly disappointed in a lot of the reviews of this book. The book is almost 48 hours long, yet most people barely have two sentences to say about it. I know most people have read this edition before, but for people like me, there aren't that many helpful reviews.
I've read many many books in my time, but nothing has ever captured my attention the way The Stand did. It starts off with a sick man plowing into a gas station and spreading the disease to about 3 or 4 people there. However, what intrigued me the most was not the characters themselves, but how they changed and grew. There are some obviously "Good" people, and there are some "Bad" ones. However, I felt like King also put some in the middle. He left room for people to change. The story, for me, was not predictable or dull, and by my experience, most 48 hour long books do get dull somewhere. This one never did. The narrator was fantastic. I thought he did a fabulous job. I can't recommend this book enough. I'm glad I started it, but I will warn you, you won't want to put it down. I finished it in 6 days if that tells you anything. Thank you audible for giving me the opportunity to enjoy this masterpiece. I will definitely be revisiting it again.

1,241 people found this helpful

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Well worth the credit

I have seen some complaints about people not giving an idea of what the story is about, so here it is briefly: It is not a "horror" novel, even though it is billed as one. In the beginning of the story a super flu wipes out most of the earth's population. There is no gratuitous gore, but there are some scenes dealing with lots of dead people. The rest of the book is about the struggle of the survivors to survive, and the battle between good and evil, God and the devil.

Stephen King's talent lies in his ability to spin a tale, to develop interesting characters that you can relate to, to put you in the mind of his characters, and make you live the story. In that regard this is one of his best works. I first read the original story probably 25 years ago, and it made a lasting impression on me. The extended version is even better.

Highly recommend this one. At first I had a neutral opinion of Grover Gardner' s voice, but after a while I grew to enjoy his narration quite a bit.

317 people found this helpful

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Worth the wait!

Would you consider the audio edition of The Stand to be better than the print version?

From what I've listened to so far the narrator (Grover Gardner) does a great job! He pulled me into the story with no distracting affectation that you get from so many other recorded books of the horror/fantasy genre. However, the daunting 48 hour listen may have me augmenting the audio edition with my paperback.

What other book might you compare The Stand to and why?

Grant's Pass - by Amanda PIller. A post-apocalyptic anthology, well written and very fun to read. At times I felt that this collection was the 'lost chapters' of The Stand.
Swan's Song - A very good read in the same vein, Robert McGammon is another of my favorites (unrelated but other great books by him: Boy's Life and Going South)
The Road - by Cormac McCarthy. Grittier and darker than The Stand but evocative (the book is better than the movie and I liked the movie)

Which scene was your favorite?

Gosh, so many! - the tunnel, the...hey, I'm not gonna spoil this for first timers! Read it and love it! Once everyone is up to speed, I may update this.

Any additional comments?

To all those folks who won't read this just because it's by Stephen King - please do yourself a favor and get this book. Although is has some 'horrific' scenes, the character development and story arc are some of the best I've ever read. Don't be put off by his reputation as Master of Horror - he's also a Master Storyteller; remember, this is the same author who gave us Stand By Me and The Shawshank Redemption.

Now, if we can just get Peter Jackson to take a peak at this little book....

292 people found this helpful

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A Post-Apocaltyptical Brain Vacation

Unlike many diehard King Fans, I never read The Stand as a teen. In fact, I only got into King after appreciating much of his later work, like Duma Key, Under the Dome and 11-22-63. This completely unabridged reworking of the original, with many previously cut passages re-added by he author, is a gem. A vacation for the brain. Normally, I view a book this long (48 full hours!) as a mountain to scale. But King turns long works into something more like a wave that is ridden. I listened to the whole thing at normal speed, with complete and utter enjoyment. The characters in this book are both lovable and despicable. There's no waste or self-indulgence here. Just damn good storytelling. More. Please.

150 people found this helpful

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HIghly overrated: great characters, defective plot

Alert: Spoilers will follow in second paragraph. Stephen King crafts interesting, conflicted characters who face difficult situations in this post-apocalyptic epic. Grover Gardner lends humanity and feeling to each character with a variety of easily distinguished and appropriate voices.

The first three quarters of the book pits the survivors of plague against each other and sets up a monumental showdown between good and evil. The Stand, as this much anticipated confrontation is known, promises to be the most important chapter in post-apocalypse history that will determine the future of mankind. Unfortunately, the ultimate showdown is rendered completely inconsequential by a deus ex machina which defeats The Great Evil. That is to say, The stand didn't matter at all. To make matters worse, the great evil survives both the puny efforts of the stand and the deus ex machina.

Be prepared to root for good guys who ultimately don't matter and who are impotent before the bad guy (who is destroyed by an exterior agent, but apparently survives).

Save your time and read something else.

15 people found this helpful

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It's finally here! Complete and uncut!

I've read this complete and uncut novel before, as it was available via the National Library Service for the Blind. But alas, it was just available for rent. But now, some 22 or so years since it was released in its entirety, I couldn't help buying it. It was actually the first thing I did when waking up on Feb 14th since audible gave me the heads up concerning it arriving on audio.

Don't pass this title up. Most of King's fans say that it is his best work ever. Well, for me it ties with It and The Dark Tower series.

Having read both versions-- this uncut doorstop of a novel, and the dinky little 800 someodd pager published in the late 70's... I prefer the one you're hopefully about to download or have already downloaded. I wouldn't have purchased the original edited edition if Random House had released it. So don't let the title confuse you, folks. It is indeed the complete and uncut edition, and well it should be. King himself says he can't abide abridged audio books. Well spoken, wordslinger! And we all say thank ya.

My opinion of said novel? C'mon, it's Stephen King. And it is one of my all time favorites which I at long last own. It's a post apocalyptic epic featuring one of the best villains of all time. It's got romance, horror, etc. Just use a credit and buy it already! Now to submit this and take care of this bothersome stuffy nose and cough of mine.

307 people found this helpful

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I'm a Fan

I can't say that this is my very favorite SK book ever, but I did really love it. I liked the characters so much. Nick who couldn't hear or speak yet he had so much to say and many people followed him. I have had dreams like this where we are all beginning again and SK makes it all come alive in his book. Grover Gardner is one of my favorite narrators ever, what talent!!!!! Yea this is a good one for sure.

83 people found this helpful