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I Am Legend

A 1954 horror anthology by Richard Matheson.

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Good Story! Too Short!

  • Mar 6, 2009
I really was rapt to this tale of Richard Neville, who apparently is the last of the human species left alive. All other "people" have mutated into different degrees of vampires. Neville locks himself in his house by night to avoid the gang of vampires led by his ex-neighbor. By day he goes out looking to destroy sleeping vampires and getting supplies and studying (he is self-taught about blood disorders). The story turns into a type of "Nazi-nightmare" (to explain this would be a spoiler). My only complaint is that the story ends about midway through the book. The rest of the book is a collection of Matheson's short stories. When I was reading I was not aware that this was the case so I was very surprised when the tale ended.

Some of the short stories are very good like The Prey which was later made into a scarry movie (Trilogy of Terror) where Karen Black was terrorized by a demon doll. As good as some of these stories are, they are not as good as the I Am Legend main tale and that is why I only give this book four stars.

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December 10, 2009
Personally, I think all of the stories contained here could have been extended into full-length novels. "I Am Legend" remains one of the most important "vampire" stories of the past century. Great review.
December 10, 2009
Thanks. The short story was way better than any of the film versions.
December 10, 2009
I did like "The Last Man on Earth" mainly because of Vincent price, but I agree that none of the film adaptations thus far have met the quality of the original novella.
December 11, 2009
Speaking of which, I just created the data point for my favorite Matheson-scripted episode of "The Twilight Zone" and his short story.
December 11, 2009
I loved that episode of TZ!
December 11, 2009
You should review it and compare it to the short story. I set up the data point to cover both. ; )
More I Am Legend reviews
review by . May 29, 2010
What was your emotional reaction as you read? Why?   I made the classic mistake reading the book after seeing the movie so my imagination was tainted with preformed images and expectations. But it quickly became evident that the book was going to be different. The book is more chilling than the movie and it pulls you into a post  post apocalyptic-like world. The reader is taken on the same emotional roller coaster as the main character.        Who would you …
review by . July 06, 2010
As long as you haven't lived under a rock for the past few years, you have probably heard of I Am Legend. The basic story is that nuclear war created a virus that turned people into vampires. One by one, people were dying, until Robert is one of the only humans left. But, the best thing about I Am Legend is that it is full of horror stories written by Matheson, such as Mad House and Dance of the Dead.      Now if you are saying, "I have already seen the movie so I know …
review by . February 20, 2010
So much more then a vampire book
  Contrary to common belief, I Am Legend is not a vampire novel. What this book is in reality is a series a short horror stories written by Richard Matheson that range from the 160 page long story I Am Legend from which the book gets its name to a three page story called The Near Departed. Although I must admit that I Am Legend, the first and longest of the stories, is far and away the best, only talking about that one part does a disservice to the other ten incredible stories that are collected …
Quick Tip by . October 12, 2010
a good book and an entertaining movie. I found the book to be a little bit more suspenseful though.
Quick Tip by . July 05, 2010
Matheson's after a LAB ACCIDENT turns everyone ELSE into Zombie like creatures trying to kill him.
Quick Tip by . July 04, 2010
A really good book. The sci-fi and the end of the world is really interesting.
Quick Tip by . June 22, 2010
A must-read if you enjoyed the movie, although prepare for an entirely different story. Even better than the movie, in my opinion - a narrative of incredible strength.
Quick Tip by . June 22, 2010
Set the tempo for modern zombie horror stories.
Quick Tip by . June 16, 2010
great stuff
Quick Tip by . June 16, 2010
This collection of stories was my introduction to Matheson and I have been a fan ever since. The tales are gripping and well told. The movie is very loosely based on the story the collection is named for.
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I first got on this blog to discuss my first passion which is books. Since I have gotten on I find that books are only a piece of this blog and I can discuss just about anything that comes to mind. It … more
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About this book


Table Of Contents:

  I Am Legend - The Last Human On Earth
· Buried Talents - An odd man wins a carnival game.
· The Near Departed - Very short story of funeral arrangements
· Prey - A strange little doll comes to life
· Witch War - Seven pretty little girls win a military battle
· Dance Of The Dead - An innocent girl gets corrupted by wild friends who take her to a bar where the "Loopy's" dance
· Dress Of White Silk - Strange but flat tale of a young girl and her dead mother's white silk dress.
· Mad House - An angry man with a volcanic temper passes along his rage into the very fiber of his house
· The Funeral - A Vampire funeral starts a fad
· From Shadowed Places - An ancient African ritual must be performed to save a man's life
· Person To Person - A man receives phone calls inside his head, but who are they coming from?

All Stories written between 1952 and 1987
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ISBN-10: 0765318741
ISBN-13: 9780765318749
Author: Richard Matheson
Genre: Horror, Science Fiction
Publisher: Tor Books, Walker & Company
Date Published: 1954
Format: Paperback
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