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Book Discussions > Under the Dome/SPOILER

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message 1: by Mary (Marbear), Founder (new)

Mary (Marbear) Blackburn (mbeth45) | 9430 comments Mod
This thread is for those that have finished the book. DO NOT READ below this post if you have not finished the book. Thanks.

Marbear


Jenn Perretti (Jennie1969) | 53 comments Im still reading this book....Im only on page 100 and i feel like im getting nowhere fast!!! Is anybody reading this book rite now because I will be shocked if someone finished this book already!!! Im gonna be reading this book till March:(


message 3: by LynnB (last edited Jan 03, 2010 04:03PM) (new)

LynnB Here's my review, and yes, it CONTAINS SPOILERS!

Under the Dome seems to be a social commentary more than a horror story. Yes, there was plenty of blood, guts and violence, but mostly he comments on politics and religion taken over by the evil ones. Adding in more themes, he considers what neighbors would do to neighbors under the circumstances that are thrown to them -- there are references to WWII and Hitler. I did find the idea of being like ants under the attack of alien children to be interesting. Occasionally, for some reason, I had the impression that Garrison Keillor had a few moments in helping to write the book -- that was a strange juxtaposition! Overall, the story was not worth the 1000+ pages, but should have been edited down some -- it wandered in places. This was my first Stephen King novel, and although it wouldn't keep me from reading more King, it doesn't draw me to reading more. I gave it 3 stars.


Jenn Perretti (Jennie1969) | 53 comments That was a great review!!! I don't know if I will continue to read this book anymore because I hate to admit this but im acually bored and Im not interested in dead birds all over the place or military men ignoring the townspeople...Yes I would love to find out what the Dome is and how it got there, but do I need to read the last pages of this looooong story to find out? I have read other King books and the only one I did like was Duma Key and I flew through that one. I guess I expected this book to be the same but it started out too slow and I don't think I can force myself to continue. Should I continue reading or is this as exciting as it gets? Any advice?


LynnB Jenn wrote: "That was a great review!!! I don't know if I will continue to read this book anymore because I hate to admit this but im acually bored and Im not interested in dead birds all over the place or mili..."

Well, to find out how it got there, you do have to read pretty close to the end. Is it worth it? I really can't tell you because it depends on what you like to read. I would think that if you're bored already, you probably won't find it better later. I don't read horror usually, and I gave it 3 stars. But you do say you read my review with the spoilers in it, so that means you already know most of it....



Jenn Perretti (Jennie1969) | 53 comments This is the first review I have read so far...I guess I missed them- Darn it!! I may read just 100 pages or more to see if it gets any better but so far im not counting on it..You never know though..I may comment in a day or so of how much better the book is getting and finish it!! Thanks for the great information!!


Mandree | 25 comments I cheated and started the book early because I wanted to be done by the time I went back to work tomorrow. Didn't want to be lugging that thing around on the bus! lol
On the whole, I think Lynn was spot-on in her review. It it more social commentary than King's usual stuff. It does linger on though and at midpoint, I got fed up with uber-villain Big Jim who has poisons running through his veins. I thought King's caracters were kind of one dimensional with very few shades of grey. I wasn't a big fan of King before and this won't turn me into one but I'm glad I read it, it sure filled up those long days sitting around nursing a cold.


Amy I am a huge King fan, pre-ordered this and read it as soon as it came out. I agree this isn't his best. If you're going to read a 1200 page book of King's I'd read The Stand. Lynn--don't give up on King. Try The Stand or Lisey's Story was also very good.

Here is my review:

Comparisons to The Stand (my all time favorite book) are inevitable, so let me begin. Under the Dome (UTD) takes the concept of what happens to survivors in an empty, de-populated America and flips it over. What happens when the population of a small town is enclosed in a slightly permeable, indestructible dome with no power, but phone and internet connection. Lots of bad things.

First of all, there is not the blatant religious overtones of TS, there is religion, and religion gone bad, but no polarizing figures to rally around(after all, where could they polarize too?). There is a character similar to Trashcan Man in The Chef, but I admit I found Chef one of the best characters of the book.

Second, there is the blatant "big bang" at the end of the book. And that's not a spoiler because as soon as that dome comes down and the air starts to become visible and you know there's a meth lab in there, you know it's gonna blow.

I enjoyed the book, with Stephen King, I always do. It just wasn't as satisfying as TS. First off, the good guys were completely out numbered at all times. Out-flanked, out-menuvuered, OUT everything. And the bad guys were over the top bad. Why were they so bad? They just had a sense of entitlement, that's why, oh and a nasty side job secret to protect. And the ever resourceful kids? We didn't see nearly enough of them.

I was completely distracted by the fact that the main good guy character went by the nickname of Barbie. I just could not get it in my head. I'd start reading a chapter with him and I'd find myself thinking: "Who is this Barbie chick?" And then I'd remember it was the Good Guy.

The Stand + fishbowl + Tommyknockers = Under The Dome

But King is always good for a ride.


message 9: by Afsana (last edited Jan 06, 2010 02:59AM) (new)

Afsana (afsanaz) I have found reading your reviews good

I agree its not as good as The stand- Which was darker and characters had more depth

the reviws have made me think and yes I think he wrote this to be a light read (when I say light I mean that what you see is what you get) no overtones or anything and the cause of the dome emphathises it-alien children experimenting on earth from a distance!!

I gave it a four star because it was a good book which I enjouyed reading-very easy to read without much thought

I suppose my rating can be a bit strange

One thing I want to point out is that the blowing up happened pre the liftinng of the dome and


Nadia (bagambo) I'm enjoying reading your reviews of this book. I started the book yesterday and so far I am really enjoying it. Can't wait to get further into the book. I do agree that naming the guy Barbie was distracting at first, but I've gotten used to it by now - but still am not a fan of his name. And I do agree that all the birds dying I could do without too.


message 11: by Dennis (last edited Jan 05, 2010 10:09PM) (new)

Dennis Well, I liked it. Certainly not as good as "The Stand", but that would hard to equal, much less beat.
Social commentary? Yeah, but so what. Methinks Mr King just liked having a whole towns population at his whim.

Amy summed it up better than I can.


Afsana (afsanaz) I would like to apologise for my badly written earlier post. now been semi fixed


Afsana (afsanaz) alot of books are/do give social commentry.

writers write what the know and its a way of xpressing what they thik

george orwell for example was good at that




Stevie (Se7ans) I try not to read reviews until after I've read a book and have established my own thoughts and feelings about it. That said - after finishing this one and thoroughly enjoying it I decided to read what some others thought. Oddly enough it seems that those with 'right wing' leanings did not seem to like this book and took a lot of it as 'republican' bashing... Those who take issue with 'climate change' saw it as a 1100 page diatribe to hit people over the head with how we are destroying the earth... others saw it as miliatry snubbing at every turn... I find this aspect of those reading it terribly interesting. Yet another magnifying glass held up to todays America. Even book reviews seem to be divided along party lines. I can see where these elements are in the book. Unlike some people though, they didn't take away from the story for me but instead added to it. I thought it was a great story with some of the more memorable characters I've read from King in a long time.

From a purely 'love it/hate it' entertainment value aspect I have to admit that I LOVED this book. It's not The Stand and it certainly is not The Dark Tower series - however it is a great read. It made me cry (a few times) and laugh out loud. The pacing was better than many King books - he was very good at slowly and methodically pressing the gas pedal until you reached break-neck speeds and never let up. I found it VERY difficult to put down (even though it weighs a ton) and it has stuck with me since finishing it. Those are my check marks for a truly outstanding book.

Oh, and he finally got an ending right! IMHO King has always had serious problems with ending his novels. LOL!


Afsana (afsanaz) Stevie wrote: "I try not to read reviews until after I've read a book and have established my own thoughts and feelings about it. That said - after finishing this one and thoroughly enjoying it I decided to read ..."

People have to remember that this book was thought up years back and maybe it isn't neccessarily saying anything about certain aspects of american society- not in anyway that would be obvious to non americans

What don't you normally like about his endings if you do not mind me asking?


LynnB Stevie wrote: "I try not to read reviews until after I've read a book and have established my own thoughts and feelings about it. That said - after finishing this one and thoroughly enjoying it I decided to read ..."

I didn't see all the political sides you were talking about as all that big or important to the plot. Until you mentioned it, I hadn't even thought about it that way. I guess I just don't see it as a big factor. I am not a fan nor a hater of the book...I just thought it was an average read and gave it 3 stars.


message 17: by Stevie (last edited Jan 07, 2010 07:25AM) (new)

Stevie (Se7ans) Afsana wrote: "What don't you normally like about his endings if you do not mind me asking?"

My husband and I discuss this about King all the time. More often than not I think King gets SO involved in his stories and characters that (like me) he hates to end it. The example I use all the time is in IT. To me (SPOILER ALERT for those who haven't read this)
the Turtle thing at the end seemed contrived - like King wasnt sure how he was going to resolve the battle. Even plopping in the obsession with the turtle wax turtle near the beginning seemed like he did it later so the turtle at the end wasnt a complete 'out-of-left-field' thing. The spidery thing with the 'dead lights' is another thing - he seemed to conceieve of something SO horrifying that it defied description even for the Master himself. LOL! Now, dont get me wrong. I LOVE King and have read pretty much everything he has written. And he redeemed himself with the very, very end of IT (I love how the adults once again are forced to 'forget') and of course after finishing The Dark Tower series the Turtle made more sense - however, you shouldn't have to wait 10 years and read 6 books to understand a singular aspect of one novel.


Stevie (Se7ans) Lynn wrote: I didn't see all the political sides you were talking about as all that big or important to the plot. Until you mentioned it, I hadn't even thought about it that way. I guess I just don't see it as a big factor.

I saw them but like I said in my review none of them distracted me in anyway from the story itself. I thought if anything they added to the story. I was actually surprised how many people did find one or more of them SO distracting that it ruined the book for them. That was the interesting thing for me in reading the reviews - how many people take thier own points of view and opinions with them into the story while they are reading it. A friend of mine wrote to me "I think people try and see politics in everything now days so they can attempt to be relevant. They even asked Hemingway once about something he wrote and it's socialist message and he responded something to the effect that they were out of their minds. He just wrote. He hadn't MEANT for it to have any deep meaning."
:)


LynnB Stevie wrote: "A friend of mine wrote to me "I think people try and see politics in everything now days so they can attempt to be relevant. They even asked Hemingway once about something he wrote..."

I think Hemingway was right and your friend too about most stories. I don't know why people have to politicize everything. Some things are just meant to be stories.




LynnB Stevie wrote: "(SPOILER ALERT for those who haven't read this) the Turtle thing at the end seemed contrived..."

I haven't read King before and I have to say that the turtle part is something I don't even remember...it didn't even register...not beginning nor end of story. I guess I missed something there. But then, I usually read for the story, not hidden meanings, so perhaps that's why and it's not just a loss of memory. ;-)






Stevie (Se7ans) Lynn wrote: "Stevie wrote: "(SPOILER ALERT for those who haven't read this) the Turtle thing at the end seemed contrived..."

I haven't read King before and I have to say that the turtle part is something I don..."


Oh Lynn.... no. The turtle thing was in the book IT by Stephen King, not in this one. :) It was my example of when King gets endings all wrong.



Afsana (afsanaz) Stevie wrote: "Lynn wrote: "Stevie wrote: "(SPOILER ALERT for those who haven't read this) the Turtle thing at the end seemed contrived..."

I haven't read King before and I have to say that the turtle part is so..."


I have read IT -will have to reread IT as seemed to have forgotten about the turtle


LynnB Stevie wrote: "Oh Lynn.... no. The turtle thing was in the book IT by Stephen King, ..."

Glad to hear it wasn't me! I'm usually a pretty thorough reader -- I started wondering if I should worry about memory loss....
;-)




Susan (NY) | 36 comments This book reminded me of the old Twilight Zone program.


Stevie (Se7ans) Susan wrote: "This book reminded me of the old Twilight Zone program."

Yes! Over the holiday one of the cable channels (scifi or AMC) did a Twilight Zone marathon and of course the one this sorta resembles this book was on. I wanted to say something but my husband hasn't read it yet and I had to stay quiet. So difficult... LOL!

"Put your toys away now honey its time for dinner"
"Aw Moooo-oom!"


Afsana (afsanaz) Stevie wrote: "Susan wrote: "This book reminded me of the old Twilight Zone program."

Yes! Over the holiday one of the cable channels (scifi or AMC) did a Twilight Zone marathon and of course the one this sorta..."


would have been interesting to watch

I have a big mouth so probably would have spilled it


Carmaletta Hilton | 9 comments I picked this book up right when it released. It only took me a week to read it, though it would have probably taken less time if I hadn't had to make myself go to bed so I could go to work the next day. This actually became one of my favorite SK books. It was a quick read and the story went straight forward, without long treks into the past. Here is the review that I wrote for it when I was done:

I wanted to give this book five stars, but the things that knocked it down to 4, I just couldn't ignore. Half a star for Stephen King's complete inability to write current teenagers. He will admit in a second that dialogue isn't his strong suit, but I would disagree. His adult dialogue is witty and good. His teens? Well, they're stuck in the 70s, sometimes the early 80s. If he's going to write teenage characters into main arcs in the story, then he should make the effort to have them sound more realistic. Also, half a star for the outrageous level of soldier hate in the first half of the book. It was so heavy-handed in parts that I had to put the book down and calm myself before I could keep going.

That being said, I LOVED this book! I spent Stephen King books waiting for the inevitable point in the middle where he wanders off for 200 pages or more into land that makes no sense and doesn't do anything but confuse. This time... He actually told a story! It was linear, and the story never got boring. For over 1000 pages, the story continued. The bad guys got worse and the good guys grew in number, even though they weren't always good. I didn't feel like the story was dragging on. It was actually well paced. I usually take 3 weeks or more to get through one of his bricks, and I was done with this one in a week. It would have been even less if it weren't NaNoWriMo and if I didn't have to work. Under the Dome just may be my new favorite Stephen King novel.


message 28: by June (last edited Jan 12, 2010 12:24PM) (new)

June (jdurio) | 41 comments Overall, I really enjoyed the story and characters. I had concerns that King would drag some of his points on as he has done in some of his pass books. I would have like to have gotten more perspective from the children of "outer space/curelty/experiment". It appears that the book was getting to a point where it just needed to end. It makes me think that this outer space stuff was not as well thought of as the main story. Julia's reasoning with one of the space children and that it!? Its over? I agree with one of the members when she compares the book to the Twilight Zone. I would also would have liked to know the final fate of big jim (although I can only imagine). At the end, my favorite character was Ollie.


Afsana (afsanaz) June wrote: "Overall, I really enjoyed the story and characters. I had concerns that King would drag some of his points on as he has done in some of his pass books. I would have like to have gotten more persp..."

yes I suppose the ending was a bit of an anticlimax in so far as the event that led to the dome and the way to resolving it

I thought big jim died?

MAybe will relook at the end again-my memory is terrible!!


Stevie (Se7ans) June wrote: "I would also would have liked to know the final fate of big jim (although I can only imagine)."

Afsana wrote: "I thought big jim died?"

Me too. didnt he die (heart attack plus poisioned air) trapped in the dark in the fallout shelter door with the images of the people he killed haunting him?


June (jdurio) | 41 comments Stevie wrote: "June wrote: "I would also would have liked to know the final fate of big jim (although I can only imagine)."

Afsana wrote: "I thought big jim died?"

Me too. didnt he die (heart attack plus poisi..."


Maybe he did. I was reading really fast at that point. I need to revisit. Thanks


Afsana (afsanaz) June

Let us know the answer


June (jdurio) | 41 comments Ok. Big Jim did die by heart attack after the generator ran out if gas. Sorry if I confused everyone.


Nadia (bagambo) I just finished the book today and must say that I really enjoyed it. There were some aspects that I felt were a bit of a let down, but overall I really did like getting caught up in the lives of the characters of Chester Mill. What I didn't much care for was the ending with the aliens - it had to be aliens responsible for the dome? To me that idea fell flat.


Manda (jsygurl) I am about 1/3 through this book, but have dipped into bits and pieces and read the ending, and I have to say that I absolutely have not enjoyed reading this book. There is just too much horrible stuff going on.

Now if my life were at some nice sunny place, that would not bother me perhaps, but my life is going through a dark stage, so I find this book to be a real struggle. I am going to abandon it for now before I begin to despise the look of it, and pick it up again later in the year.


Afsana (afsanaz) Nadia wrote: "I just finished the book today and must say that I really enjoyed it. There were some aspects that I felt were a bit of a let down, but overall I really did like getting caught up in the lives of t..."

What did you think was a let down?

Manda some times books are wrong for the time. Hope things improve for you


Nadia (bagambo) I thought the idea of the alien children being responsible for the dome was a let down. Begging for freedom I get, but the fact that Julia was able to get the alien child to agree so quickly seemed a bit ridiculous. The ending just did not work for me at all. And the fact that there were more violent actions than humane ones was a bit of a let down, because it just felt as if the notion of compassion got lost in the shuffle and would only surface now and again. There were just some things that didn't seem to really bring the book home like they should have. Of course I just finished the book today, so I'm sure I'll mull it over a bit and wind up remembering things that I'd forgotten.


Bonita (NMBonita) Nadia wrote: "I thought the idea of the alien children being responsible for the dome was a let down. Begging for freedom I get, but the fact that Julia was able to get the alien child to agree so quickly seemed..."

S.K. discusses Under the Dome: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gi_twm... He mentions - I think it's in this video, or in one of the four parts that follow - that so many readers were disappointed about not knowing the source of the crisis in Cell that he felt he should write some kind of explanation in Under the Dome. But he didn't want it to be completely clear either.

I was disappointed with the alien thing to, sort of, maybe if he had foreshadowed an alien presense? A hint in the beginning? Or maybe some kid was into Alien games? It seemed to me that the leather heads came out of nowhere and it seemed a bit contrived. I hate when that happens.


Bonita (NMBonita) oh, it's in part 3... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YywQvx...

If you haven't read the book, be aware, there are some ***spoilers*** in this interview.


Nadia (bagambo) I agree Bonita, it would have been nice if he had foreshadowed the presence of aliens in some way. Thanks for the youtube links, I'll check them out!


Bonita (NMBonita) You're welcome, Nadia. Glad I could share :)


Bonita (NMBonita) Lynn wrote: "Overall, the story was not worth the 1000+ pages, but should have been edited down some -- it wandered in places.


I heard the book was originally 2,000 pages. So, I guess it was cut down considerably. I hated the politics and the religious fanatics too, but hey, they guy's just writing what he's passionate about. As it should be.





June (jdurio) | 41 comments How ironic that we are discussing this book at the same time that Haiti is experiencing such strategy and destruction. CNN, lack of resources , panic, etc .


Afsana (afsanaz) Bonita wrote: "Nadia wrote: "I thought the idea of the alien children being responsible for the dome was a let down. Begging for freedom I get, but the fact that Julia was able to get the alien child to agree so ..."

Thing is it was clear what happened at the end so what sk says does not make sense.

It was ended too abruptly and easily .


Stevie (Se7ans) To me the reason why The Dome was there and what was causing it was such a small part of the story that I didn't mind the ending at all... in fact I think it suited the story well. It appeared suddenly and without cause - and disappeared just as suddenly. Just as a bunch of kids trapping ants in a glass on a sidewalk in the summer and just as quickly getting bored or feeling badly about it and without thinking much about it will lift the glass. And in turn, the ants know nothing about the kids trapping them - cannot comprehend any why or what for. They just know they are trapped.

The real guts of the story here was what happened to the people in the Dome and how trapping a town and cutting it off from the rest of the world is EXACTLY like holding up a magnifying glass. Everything is exaggerated. Everything is enhanced... good and bad. Especially the bad.

The Dome was just a means to tell the story. To expose the sickness. The Dome was the symptom not the disease.

- Stevie


Afsana wrote: "Bonita wrote: "Nadia wrote: "I thought the idea of the alien children being responsible for the dome was a let down. Begging for freedom I get, but the fact that Julia was able to get the alien chi..."




Afsana (afsanaz) Stevie wrote: "To me the reason why The Dome was there and what was causing it was such a small part of the story that I didn't mind the ending at all... in fact I think it suited the story well. It appeared sud..."

I liked that and having thought about it agree

By the ending being so quickly over he is emphasing the actions of the children v ants and aliens v us and how people can react to being trapped and examined with more scrutiny and nothing to stop them


Sheila (sheilannb) | 17 comments Stevie wrote: "I try not to read reviews until after I've read a book and have established my own thoughts and feelings about it. That said - after finishing this one and thoroughly enjoying it I decided to read ..."


I agree that King's ending are the week point of his novels. I alway's feel like he thinks "oops - time to end it" and just ties everything up as quickly as possible.



Nadia (bagambo) I completely agree with you Sheila. That is exactly how this novel's ending felt.


Sheri Lemay | 33 comments I found that I wasn't able to read this one at all. The only Stephen King book I couldn't get into. I found it put me to sleep and then I ended up rereading the same part over and over again.


Elizabeth Smith Hostetler (ehostetler0323) | 25 comments I'm still toward the beginning of the book and I just can't seem to get into it. I love Stephen King novels and I really like the concept of this book but I'm somehow getting stuck. Maybe it is that there are too many characters thrown at the reader too quickly. I know that the characters in Stephen King novels tend to get very numerous and I normally am ok with it. It just seems like a lot of people and a lot of family connections and I'm not really feeling the characters yet and there are just a bunch of names. At one point, I almost grabbed a piece of paper to start writing the names down and the connections so I didn't get confused. That was too much effort though. I'm sure as I get more into it and I get to know the characters I will change my mind. It just isn't capturing me yet but I will keep chugging along.


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