Review: Under the Dome by Stephen King
Title: Under the Dome (audio book)
Author: Stephen King
Publication: Scribner Book Company; November, 2009
Audio Book: Simon & Schuster Audio; November 2009
Rating: 4 Bookmarks
When an impenetrable dome cuts off Chester’s Mill, Maine from the world around it, the townspeople are pitted against each other in battles orchestrated not only by a local town selectman, but by a far more sinister, unknown force.
As a high school student, I positively devoured Stephen King novels–It, Needful Things, Christine, Gerald’s Game–but left the genre behind when I got to college. More recently, I’ve taken to borrowing King’s audio books from the library–Lisey’s Story, The Cell, and now, Under the Dome. King’s book have great characterization and imagery and a narrated audio book adds another dimension for me
The premise of the novel had a sci-fi aspect which typically isn’t my favorite genre, but King’s character’s are so expertly drawn out and engaging that I couldn’t help but to get fully invested in the story–all 30 discs worth!
I’ve noticed a quirk about myself as a reader when it comes to audio books: I tend to enjoy (most) books a bit more when I listen to them. I was reading this book on my Kindle simultaneously to help speed the process and found the story much more riveting and tense when I was listening to it in my car. Instead of being able to skim ahead and make sure everyone is okay, audio books force the listener to absorb every word and nuance, building suspense and anxiety.
While this book was a huge time investment, it was well worth it. The grim picture that King drew was eye-opening. It was disturbing to witness seemingly law-abiding citizens being so easily manipulated by an evil man during a time of crisis. The antagonist, Jim Rennie, Sr., incited riots and panic with ease, pitting townspeople against each other. (For a more complete story synopsis, see link above.)
Ultimately, the novel came down to the basic theme of good versus evil, with a King-eque twist: What if the evil emanates from two sources–one well-known and the other absolutely alien to us?