Book cover from I Am Legend by Richard Matheson
Book cover 'I Am Legend'

I Am Legend

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Author(s): Richard Matheson
Format: Book › Mass Market Paperback all formats
Edition: 2
Published: 10-30-2007
ISBN: 0765357151
Pages: 320
Publisher: Tor Books
List Price: $8.99

BooksToRead Review

I Am Legend is a gloomy apocalyptic novel by author Richard Matheson (published in 1954). Without spectacular chases or extraterrestrial monsters, and so as much a psychological novel as a science fiction or horror book. Rough and strong, but not really thrillingly exciting. The American movie from the book (with Will Smith's as lead role) was released in movie theaters in December 2007.

Robert Neville is the last normal person on earth after there has been a pandemic that has changed the rest of humanity into vampire-like creatures. During the day he chases on these vampires and tries to repair his house so that he can withstand the attacks of the vampires at night ...

Book description

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 determined to destroy him.

By day, he is a hunter, stalking the infected monstrosities through the abandoned ruins of civilization. By night, he barricades himself in his home and prays for dawn....

Book review

One of the most influential vampire novels of the 20th century, I Am Legend regularly appears on the "10 Best" lists of numerous critical studies of the horror genre. As Richard Matheson's third novel, it was first marketed as science fiction (for although written in 1954, the story takes place in a future 1976). A terrible plague has decimated the world, and those who were unfortunate enough to survive have been transformed into blood-thirsty creatures of the night. Except, that is, for Robert Neville. He alone appears to be immune to this disease, but the grim irony is that now he is the outsider. He is the legendary monster who must be destroyed because he is different from everyone else. Employing a stark, almost documentary style, Richard Matheson was one of the first writers to convince us that the undead can lurk in a local supermarket freezer as well as a remote Gothic castle. His influence on a generation of bestselling authors--including Stephen King and Dean Koontz--who first read him in their youth is, well, legendary. --Stanley Wiater

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