Saturday, July 27, 2013

Under the Dome

Title: Under the Dome

Author: Stephen King

Date Read: July 19, 2013

Summary: On an entirely normal, beautiful fall day in Chester's Mill, Maine, the town is inexplicably and suddenly sealed off from the rest of the world by an invisible force field. Planes crash into it and fall from the sky in flaming wreckage, a gardener's hand is severed as "the dome" comes down on it, people running errands in the neighboring town are divided from their families, and cars explode on impact. No one can fathom what this barrier is, where it came from, and when -- or if -- it will go away.
Dale Barbara, Iraq vet and now a short-order cook, finds himself teamed with a few intrepid citizens -- town newspaper owner Julia Shumway, a physician's assistant at the hospital, a select-woman, and three brave kids. Against them stands Big Jim Rennie, a politician who will stop at nothing -- even murder -- to hold the reins of power, and his son, who is keeping a horrible secret in a dark pantry. But their main adversary is the Dome itself. Because time isn't just short. It's running out. goodreads

Review: Oh Stephen, you've done it again. Sucked me into a ridiculously long book (1,200+ pages) and kept me interested the whole time. I think that's what makes our relationship work. Granted, sometimes you can get a little out of control with the number of characters in each book but I can overlook that. Especially since you have great character development, even for the characters that only live for about four pages. I see you continue to repeat the normal themes from other books and while that would bother others, I find it endearing. I tend to be interested in your view of religion and politics and how you can portray them in each of your stories in a different way.

This particular tome gives us a glimpse at how quickly a society can deteriorate under poor guidance. It took this town about a week to fall apart, mutiny, and find a solution. Granted, that is extreme and they were cut off from the world, but I think it is relatively accurate of how a dictator can quickly destroy a nation. It was also interesting to see what a person will do when they know there are no consequences. And by interesting, I mean terrifying.

"A refusal to face the orderless, reasonless beast, that can arise when frightened people are provoked."

Things quickly became out of control when the Dome came down and Stephen, being his clever self, used multiple points of view, which allowed us various glimpses into the different happenings around town. They also provided us with information that other townspeople didn't have which added to the suspense. It all eventually came down to good vs. evil and seeing who chose which side. In the end, we see that we all make evil decisions as some point, but you either feel guilty and try to make amends or your conscience looks the other way and you go deeper to the dark side. One of the best ways this was portrayed was when two of the main "evil" characters slowly started to rot from the inside out. Gross, but very fitting.

I've heard that people either love or loathe King, and I seem to fall under the former category. If you can deal with a little bit of gore and supernatural, I definitely recommend this thriller. And to you Stephen, thanks for entertaining me and I assure you, I will be back for more.

*Sidenote: They have recently come out with a TV show based on this book. I have recorded it on our DVR but haven't seen it yet. It seems to have a note of cheesiness from what I have seen though.


  1. I like King more when there are just a few characters to keep track of. I liked this well enough, but much prefer something like Misery. Even The Stand, which everyone seems to love, was a little overwhelming for me.

  2. I agree, the number of characters can definitely get overwhelming and with some authors, it is a big turn off for me. I think with King, I expect it and know that he will make it clear relatively quickly if they are important characters, which helps me sift through all of them. I haven't read Misery yet but I look forward to seeing his writing without all of the extras! Thanks for stopping by!

    1. Misery is so incredibly well-done. That was the book that really got me hooked on King.

      (If you're interested...)

    2. Great review and I'm definitely interested in reading misery! I'll probably also follow along on your must-reads to find some more thrillers. Thanks for sharing!

  3. King is my favourite author but I wasn't overly keen on this one. I'm more than familiar with how bad his endings can be, but this one was bloody awful!

    11.22.63 is one of my favourites of his books.

    1. I have to agree on the ending in this one. When I found out what was causing the dome, I was so disappointed. I was hoping for a different ending but I'm used to being underwhelmed with some aspects of his books but then something like 11.22.63 comes along and keeps me coming back for more. I find I can forgive him for some of the annoyances because the majority of his work I really enjoy. Glad I have a fellow King fan in my midst!