Reviews: Under The Dome

Under the D'Oh

Okay, that will be the only Simpsons Movie jape.

Shortly after reading The Stand, I found and listened to an audiobook of Under the Dome and found myself once again engaged.

An invisible forcefield isolates the town of Chester's Mill off from the rest of the world. Not a week passes before all hell breaks loose inside. James "Big Jim" Rennie, the town's second selectman, begins to see the increasing chaos as a means to gain power. The town's weak-willed or dimwitted officials are led astray by Rennie's influence, while people with good intentions like Dale "Barbie" Barbara, Julia Shumway, and Joseph "Scarecrow Joe" McClatchey have the odds against them at every turn. As people begin to crack and laws are forgotten, things begin to go From Bad To Worse and the HSQ increases at a startling pace.

While very clearly a satire on modern American society in all of its fallacies, his inclusion of another bizarre supernatural element makes the threat of man's inhumanity to man all the more horrific. It's a story about how we break down during intense situations.

Incorporating a large-scale narrative and utilizing countless members of the Chester's Mill community, King certainly wraps you up in suspense and mystery.

If I had a complaint it would be in regards to the Large Hamminess of many of the story's villains, especially Big Jim and his son, as well as the near-universal interpretation of kids having a For The Evulz mentality in a crisis. Also the speed of which things get out of hand is remarkably fast, but since King is good enough to give plausible explanation and development to each of these, my complaints are very minor ones.

Under the Dome is pretty enthralling. It contains King's dark imagery, poignant characterizations, hyperlink narrative, and witty pop culture references. It's another book that makes me cock my head in confusion when some literary critics don't see any merit to speculative works like the works of Stephen King. I think this book drives a point home as accurately as George Orwell's Animal Farm.