Under the Dome: Book summary and reviews of Under the Dome by Stephen King

Under the Dome

A Novel

By Stephen King

Under the Dome
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  • Published in USA  Nov 2009,
    1088 pages.

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Book 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.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Some will balk at the page count, but a fast pace and compelling narrative make the reader's time fly. Highly recommended." - Library Journal

"It hardly matters that, after 1,000-plus pages, the yarn doesn't quite add up. It's vintage King: wonderfully written, good, creepy, old-school fun." - Kirkus Reviews

"Starred Review. ...while this novel doesn't have the moral weight of, say, The Stand, nevertheless, it's a nonstop thrill ride as well as a disturbing, moving meditation on our capacity for good and evil." - Publishers Weekly

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Reader Reviews

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Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Jared
Great book that needed a better ending
Read the book in a little over a week . . which doesn't sound all that quick, but it's a 1,072 page book and it was maybe the 10th book I've ever read front to back. I loved all the way up till the ending sequence. I was just hoping for more than what I got. However, overall it was an excellent book.

Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Susana
Great read but a little clumsy and way too long
I love Stephen King. I truly enjoyed this book. It had a great plot and good characters.

That being said, it was too long. The Stand is one of my favorite books, and it deserved every page. But this book less so. The narration was clumsy at times, drawing attention to the fact that someone was narrating instead of just letting the story tell itself. That really annoyed me when Kind would go, "No time has passed due to the joy of narration" or something like that. Clumsy for an accomplished writer.

The ET part was also annoying because it wasn't developed. It was hinted at a few times, but it was basically just a neat ending. Couldn't we have heard those ET kids giggle a few time as they fried the ants?

As I said, it was a good read if long (I felt as if I couldn't quit ... not because I didn't want to stop but because I wouldn't be able to keep up with what was happening if I did.) I am a REALLY fast reader, by the way. I can't imagine what moderate readers thought.

Rated 4 of 5 of 5 by Vishnu Bachani
Not scary at all (as some might've expected), but a good story.
Under the Dome is a moving, suspenseful, and action-packed story about an invisible dome that entraps a town. The horror of the story is more the political corruption and insanity epidemic than the actual dome. A good read for any King fan.

Rated 2 of 5 of 5 by Russell P
A very disappointing read
In the Author's Note at the conclusion of the novel Mr. King writes: "I first tried to write Under The Dome in 1976." Perhaps he should have left it there. Although the primary characters were memorable the tale was far too busy jumping from one unbelievable event to the next. Chaos reigned supreme in this tale of a city whose citizens, mostly dullards, find themselves trapped under an invisible dome. For a book of nearly eleven hundred pages one would expect a far better work. In summation waste neither time, nor money on this one.

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Author Information

Stephen King Author Biography

© Tabitha King

Stephen King has written more than forty novels and two hundred short stories. He has won the World Fantasy Award, several Bram Stoker Awards, the O. Henry Award, and the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.

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