Overview (No Spoilers): Well my Stephen King kick is finally over. I struggle to think of a book that I’ve read that wasn’t more painful and tortuous than Under the Dome. It has been a full twenty four hours since completing this read and my heart still hurts. That being said, Under the Dome has so many of the key attributes I look for in great literature. The world building and character development were delightfully detailed as with the majority of books that King writes. Those two factors alone will usually carry me through a novel whose subject matter isn’t necessarily one I gravitate towards. In this case though, King initially had me hook, line and sinker with the concept of behind Under the Dome. How can ones curiosity not be piqued when a mysterious barrier blocks off a small town, let the chaos reign? Unfortunately, what ultimately ruined this read for me was that there was very, little to no ‘good’ or ‘happy’ that took place anywhere. With so much death occurring, I struggle to think of a book that was more devastating. Further compounding matter were the multitude of instances where King built up a story line or character only to have that effort fizzle out without a semblance of a bang, wrecking emotional havoc and tiring down his reader. Overall, as much as I love and enjoy King’s style of writing, following Under the Dome I foresee much time passing before I pick up another one of his novels. My literary heart needs time to heal!
Additional Insight (Spoilers Abound):
- By the end the concept of kids torturing animals/people becomes a reoccurring theme and key plot point in the story. I couldn’t help but reflect that King made Under the Dome into his own magnifying glass and his readers the hapless ants.
- The lack of communication between the people and military seems implausible. Perhaps that’s how it would initially happen but in this case it served to wind up the crowd and plant suspicions.
- Would a town really go that crazy in only a few days? I suppose they could especially with an instigator like Big Jim pulling strings.
- I was intrigued by aliens causing the dome, however how did the dome fit on the exact town lines? Did the kids ‘buy’ a snow globe for Chester’s Mill? How did the dome induce the suicides or visions of the future?
- What was the point of Duke Perkins file? Or for that matter Andrea Grinell getting sober? So many buildups that went nowhere. It was frustrating to no end that these town people held their own council and didn’t share what they knew with other people.
- What happened after the dome was lifted? What were the repercussions?
- Poor, poor Ollie. Cue all the tears!