Sunday, April 7, 2013

BOOK REVIEW: Under The Dome by Stephen King

This book review is extra special because not only is it my first review on my new blog, but also, this is the very first Stephen King book I've read. And...not only is this my first King novel, but it's the biggest book I've ever read! At 1,072 pages, it's quite huge and a little difficult to hold at times.

Book Description:  Just down Route 119 in Chester’s Mill, Maine, all hell is about to break loose. . . .

On an entirely normal, beautiful fall day, a small town is suddenly and inexplicably sealed off from the rest of the world by an invisible force field. Planes crash into it and rain down flaming wreckage. A gardener’s hand is severed as the dome descends. Cars explode on impact. Families are separated and panic mounts. No one can fathom what the barrier is, where it came from, and when—or if—it will go away. Now a few intrepid citizens, led by an Iraq vet turned short-order cook, face down a ruthless politician dead set on seizing the reins of power under the dome. But their main adversary is the dome itself. Because time isn’t just running short. It’s running out.

Review:  Firstly, I loved this book! It was so good! Before starting, I thought it was going to take me forever! Although I really did want to read it, I was kind of dreading it. So it sat around for about a week and a half before I actually started it. Finally, I began the book and to my surprise, I found it an amazingly easy read.

Although the book has chapters, within each chapter there are sections that tells different perspectives of what people are going through. So we get a sense of how the dome affects everyone involved. There are a lot of intricate layers to the people of the town and how they came to be who they are when the dome comes down. We learn about each of these people and why they are the way that they are. It's interesting that as you read you get lost in time and it seems like the dome has been in place forever, when actually it hasn't. It's scary to think how bad things can get and how fast they can get this way.

The variety of characters involved, both inside and outside of the dome, keep the book entertaining and interesting. We have the short-order cook trying to get out of town, who has a past he'd like to forget about, but becomes common knowledge before he knows it. There's the local newspaper owner who knows lots of stuff about most of the people in town, but not everything. There's the three selectmen of the town, a pharmacist who is basically the face of the government, the car dealer who actually calls all the shots, and the woman addicted to pain-killers, which are conveniently provided by the first selectman. There's the crazy son of the second selectman and his bullying friends.

We also have the law enforcement in town, the chief of police has been on the job for years and knows more than he lets on. The deputy is has a simple mind and is easily controlled. The local doctor who leaves most everything to his PA and small staff. There are two ministers to the only two very different churches. One is tied up with the selectmen and the other questions her own faith. We have several young ladies who are violated in the most terrifying ways. There's the local crazy alcoholic. The missing man. There's the older folks, men and women who are caught in the middle of everything that goes on. Then the three young friends who surprise everyone.

There are several other characters, and though they are not main characters, their stories are important and sometimes vital to the help the story move forward. There are some surprising and horrific things that happen, after all it wouldn't be a Stephen King novel without it. Discovering the truth behind the Dome, brings many  face-to-face with the pasts they've tried to forget, or the consequences of the actions they tried to hide from everybody. And those who are left, will truly have a greater appreciation for all life.

I've obviously not given you much to go on, but that's because I think this is a story you have to read to discover how each individual character's story intertwines with the others to make the whole story come together.

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