It’s been a while since I stayed up late just to finish a book, I actually think the last time I did that was last summer when I read Michael Crichton’s Pirate Latitudes. But that’s what I did last night. It ended up being a little past two in the morning when I finally finished Under The Dome, by Stephen King.
I haven’t read too many books by Stephen King, but from what I did read, I was a little confused on how I felt about his writing. He always seemed to have something crazy or insane going on that you could never really predict. Sometimes things just ended up much too far-fetched in his books than I would have liked (hence my mixed feelings). But there’s no doubt he’s an amazing author none-the-less.
In a way he reminds me of kid in a candy shop with his writing, just by the way he seems to always have something going on, even in the slower parts of his books (which sometimes don’t exist). I think the one thing that makes him such a good writer though and what I like about his style is that he knows exactly how to frustrate the reader with the events that occur throughout his work. He is no doubt, a literary genius.
As I said though, I did finish his book, Under The Dome, last night (More like early this morning) and I was quite impressed.
It made an impression on me to say the least.
I got the book for my birthday last October from my parents, and started reading it that night. I didn’t make it very far before realizing that I wouldn’t have much time to get through such a thick book efficiently with my busy schedule. So I stopped reading and put it down until I could find more time to get through it. It was a fairly big undertaking, being one of the longest novels I’ve read (killing many trees at 1072 pages), so I waited out the busy school year before starting the book again.
After reading just the first fifty or so pages on my birthday though, I knew it was going to be a great read and everytime I looked at the huge novel on my desk, I would think to myself, “I can’t wait to read that!”. Finally did, after such a long wait too.
I found that Under The Dome really was an amazing book and everything I had hoped for. It was constantly eventful, creatively brilliant, extremely intriguing and compelling, and very frustrating (in a good way, if that makes any sense).
The elephant of a book featured an entire town in Maine, called Chester’s Mill. It was the quaint sort of place where everyone in town knew each other and was fairly tight knit. So with that said, there was an entire towns population that Stephen King had to play with for the novel, which he took with imagination and in quite a smart manner. Of course though, there were some characters that stuck out more than others as being more of the novels main characters. Some of these characters featured an ex-military officer, a journalist/owner of the newspaper, a power hungry town selectman/used car salesman/drug lore, a thug turned sociopath and a physician’s assistant turned full out town doctor.
As a quick synopsis, the book is about a mysterious dome that drops down over the town of Chester’s Mill on a nice mid-October day. As the novel continues, there are various attempts by the military to break through the dome, all the while, the towns second selectman is working to gain control of the entire town in a power thirsty attempt to become the inspiring leader everyone looks up to and follows. But there is a small group of individuals against that, fit with the task to take control of the town by the United States government. This stand off basically starts a war between the two sides, one with a lot of trickery and manipulation. The novel features several climaxes with tonnes of unpredictable turns and twists that really kept me reading and is one outstanding book.
It’s not just about the psychology of being stuck under an invisible dome neither, feeling like a bunch of ants under a magnifying glass. It really demonstrates the impact people have on the environment as well by showing the deteriorating air quality coming from the small town due to human foolishness and an increasingly thick layer of grime had been forming on the dome.
Even though its a huge undertaking, being such a long book, I think its a great read and would suggest this novel to anyone looking for excitement that will keep them guessing and make them think about the possibilities of such an event occuring.
I think the thing that made me really connect with the novel was the fact that I live in a town that resembles Chester`s Mill. We are basically the same size, have a lot of the same businesses and share a similar community view. Sometimes I even wonder if that happened in my town, what part would I play if any?
I think out of all the characters, I would be similar to that of Scarecrow Joe’s stance. He was kinda working behind the scenes but fairly smart, able to work things out logically and plan in a high stress situation. I think that’s something I would do. I’m not the type to just sit around and wait to see what happens, but I’m also not the type who likes to get noticed a lot, so behind the scenes would my specialty, along with my quick thinking. Or so I think anyways.
I also know, that if it were my town, the air would get thick extremely fast with all of our pollution and stupid people everywhere. But in the end, I think we would definitely work things out better than those of Chester’s Mill, especially since we don’t have any really power hungry citizens. Then again, you know what people are apt to do in a situation of that calliper.
But I hope that someone else shares their thoughts and maybe even inspire somebody to take on Under The Dome by Stephen King.
“A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face. It is one of the few havens remaining where a man’s mind can get both provocation and privacy” – Edward P. Morgan