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11.28.2009

Under the Dome by Stephen King


Under the Dome falls flat, during the entire 1000+ pages I felt as if I, myself was sipping on stale air.

I haven't read a King novel in a long time.  It has at least been a decade.  King will always remain in my heart as the novelist who popped my paranormal cherry.  It was 6th grade and I read IT to the horror of my deeply religious teacher, who couldn't believe that I was reading the book, and thought I was just showing off by bringing the book to "free time". (Catholic School K-12) The man actually gave me a test on the book to prove that I was lying and as unintelligent as he assumed I was.

Since then I sucked down every King novel that was in our local library, and The Stand still remains as one of my top 10 favorite books in existence. Yet, with maturity comes changes in taste and my tastes moved away from Mr. King's novels and onto others.  With his release of Under the Dome I thought it might be the time to go back and sample Kings writings. Especially since I had a 50% Off coupon from Borders.  (Yes I bought this sucker with my own money)

I think I picked the wrong novel to make my way back into King's macabre world. This novel can't even compare to some of his earlier writing. It had everything that makes King's writing memorable and epic: witty dialog between characters, the intense action sequences, death and destruction, larger than life villains and troubled, soiled and touching good guys/girls.

Yet, there was a lot of undesirables in this novel also.

For one there were way too many characters. There was an index!  I was completely lost during half the book as the POV shifted and it took me almost a page to figure out who this person was.

Secondly, there was too much foreshadowing within the novel.  So much so, that when the climax hit, I was just basically like "Oh ok, well finally." No surprise, just grisly teeth grinding as I read through the graphic depictions of people's deaths.

Next I also thought the characters were a bit off.  Sometimes they just didn't act like themselves.

Lastly, it was just too much.  Too much book for me.  Too many characters, too much description, too many plot lines that were way too hard to follow.  I skimmed a lot through this book.  Half this book could have been cut out and it would have been much better. There was also tons of plot threads that didn't match. Bigger the author - the more the editor gets scared of them, huh?

Oh, and on a personal note - mom always tells me not to discuss politics and religion in polite company.  This book was choked full of political references and religious stereotypes.  It was very obvious which way King's political beliefs fell, and his stereotyping of right-wing crazies was insulting at some times. I've really had enough of actors and singers getting political - there is nothing like going to a concert and hearing a singer blab about this and that political agenda.  I really don't want to read it either. But that is just this reviewers opinion.

Fans of King will probably enjoy this.  For me, well it was just pretty stale - like that old pack of cigarettes that you find in your coat pocket when you pull it out for the winter.  Eureka! Look what I've found - until you smoke it.  You get the nicotine kick - but it just tastes like chicken poop.























12 comments:

Emily said...

Excellent review. I saw Under the Dome at Barnes and Noble today and I marvelled at how I could use copies of the book to keep my car from rolling downhill. People are so ga-ga over this book and I admit, I'm not sure why.

Book Crazy Jenn said...

EAK awesome AWESOME review - I was thinking of picking this up, as a LOVER of The Stand as well - I thought, since several of the reviews I read linked this one to that - that I might enjoy it...apparently not...Thank you so much! :)

ladystorm said...

great review, and I am sorry you didn't like it to much. I want to read it and I hope I enjoy it but one never knows until they read the book.

Dannie said...

Ha, chicken poop.

The Book Vixen said...

I have to admit, I have yet to read a SK novel. I have acquired a few of his novels from PBS but haven't gotten to them yet. I am one of those people excited to get my hands on Under the Dome. Being over 1,000 pages does intimidate me but I will try to tackle it.

Great review!

Barbara said...

I hadn't read anything by him in years too. I just got a craving and ironically I'm reading It right now. I might see if it's at the library but hey on the bright side since this is a big ass book it might make a handy weapon to throw at someone.

Chase92 said...

Wow... Guess I'm not gonna read it then.

My 5 Monkeys(Julie) said...

great review and I agree his earlier stuff like the IT and the Stand are his best works. Thanks for the heads up I won't be reading this one.

Lily Child said...

Thanks for the honest review. This book has been getting a lot of hype. It's good to read some conflicting opinions. The Shining is by fav. SK novel, btw...

Kris said...

Awesome review...love that you were honest. What really sucks is I just ordered this book like two days ago...wish i would have seen this review first.

Tina said...

Good review...The Stand is one of my favs as well....but your right King has got wayyyy to left for my tastes, Im sick of celebs poopn politics as well...I like your pretty face not your loud go on forever mouth!!....:)

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Amen sister. I love your review. Thank you for telling me about the political and religious references. I hate that and couldn't agree more! MAJOR *high five*!

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