Monday, April 19, 2010

Why don't you go Under the Dome

Several months ago, my husband decided to buy Stephen King’s Under the Dome. He’s a huge fan of Uncle Stevie and was eager to read this almost 1,100-page tome. However, he was only willing to buy this doorstop if I agreed to read it too. I also enjoy a good Stephen King novel – although I’ve read fewer of his books than Terry has – so I said, sure, I’ll read it too.

Terry read it almost immediately after buying it and has been after me ever since to read it. I have so many books on my bookshelves calling to me that I put it off and put it off, knowing how long it would take me to get through it. Finally, though, his puppy-dog eyes worked their magic and I picked up the book (using a crane and a hydraulic lift).

I finished Under the Dome today. I had planned to take today as a personal day, so after sleeping in, I moved to the living room, picked up the book, cuddled under a blanket, and read and read and read. It was a great day because there’s little I love to do more with my free time than read, and the book was a pleasure.

You might be intimidated when you pick up the book at first because I’m not kidding, the size of it is frightening. I’m an ebook hater – I want to turn pages, feel the book, smell the book, etc. – but if I were ever to consider buying one, it would be to make reading such a big book easier. However, I caution you: Don’t let the heft of it prevent you from reading it.

Uncle Stevie creates an entire town of incredibly individual characters in this book, and they are my main reason for recommending it. Some of them are inspiring, some of them are gaping-mouth stupid, some of them are evil, and some are just plain sick in the head. Some are even a whole lot like you and me.

The premise of the book is that the small town of Chester’s Mill, Maine, is all of the sudden stuck under an invisible, indestructible dome. Of course, there’s the mystery surrounding the dome itself – where did it come from and will it ever go away? But the story is more about how the town’s inhabitants live under the dome, completely cut off from the rest of the world – who rises, who falls, who survives and who becomes a victim of the dome.

My favorite books are the ones whose characters stay with me long after finishing the book. Uncle Stevie did that with the dome. I dare you to read it and not be haunted by Big Jim. Or the Chef. Or maybe even Junior.

Let me know how that goes.

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