Thursday, 18 March 2010

Review: Under The Dome

Under The DomeBy Stephen King

Three hundred and thirty six thousand words.

That really needs it's own paragraph. This is one monster of a book, and a great story. I've been up, night after night, until the hours are late and my eyes are dry, glued to every page.

In brief, this is the story of a small town cut off from the outside world by an inpenetratable force field they come to call The Dome. No one can get in to help; no one can get out to escape. For one man, that isn't such a bad thing. As he tries to take dictorial control over the town, the body count mounts.

There is something about this book that feels like it was written in the eighties alongside The Stand and IT. On the downside, the characters aren't as well drawn as the kids in IT, and the story isn't as impressive as The Stand. It also feels way too long. There are a lot of sections that could be trimmed or cut, and having finished it, the story that stays with me doesn't reflect the size of the book.

The other thing that got me was the mystery aspect: what the dome actually is and why it's there. It felt like Series One of Lost when they find the hatch. In fact, there's a reference to Lost in the book, so maybe King's a fan.

I'm not giving any spoilers away, but at first, when I discovered what the dome was, I was hit by disappointment. However, once I realised the point the author was getting at, it all made sense and gave for a very satisfying conclusion.

Overall, a great story. Was it too long? I don't know. Some sections felt like waffle, and it was good to reach the end, but it was also sad that it was over. I'd have happily continued reading for another 300 pages.