148. I am Legend (Richard Matheson)

Sunday, October 21, 2012
I haven't read many horror novels since I was a teenager and couldn't get enough of them.  Its been a long time though since I've read anything from this genre.  I quickly became bored of it when I hit university and began reading more nonfiction (for fun!) and delving into the classics.  However, I had Richard Matheson's novel  I AM LEGEND on a disc full of e-books and figured I'd give it go (i.e. nothing else appealed to me).  Two words: blown away.

There was no expectation that I'd enjoy this.  I remember the horrible movie that Will Smith made a few years ago and was prepared to delete this from Hrothgar's memory banks within a chapter or two.  Colour me surprised when I found myself hooked almost from the get go.  I'm not embarassed to admit that I was a bit confused at first.  The "vampires" Matheson writes about reminded me more of traditional movie-style zombies but I found his take on the vampire mythology refreshing and unique.  It was even more surprising to me to learn that he wrote I AM LEGEND more than half a century ago!

According to Wikipedia, Matheson's 1954 novel was the basis for a number of movies including The Omega Man with Charleton Heston which I remember enjoying quite a lot, the aforementioned terrible adaptation with Will Smith, and Night of the Living Dead (classic!).  If you haven't read  Richard Matheson's I AM LEGEND, what are you waiting for?  Its not your standard vampire/horror story and I guarantee you'll be pleasantly surprised.  Check out the wiki link for a plot summary.


Barbara Bruederlin said...

It inspired Night of the Living Dead? Obviously I have to read this. Thanks!

Karen said...

Barb, according to Wikipedia. I can sort of see the connection. Regardless I really liked this vampire story - a nice change from all this modern vampire crap that's out there.

Heather said...

You might enjoy the 'Machine of Death' anthologies and 'Earth Abides' if you got a kick out of 'I am Legend.'

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