Publish Date: 11/10/2009
Sales Rank: 13019
(in Inches) 10H x 6.75L x 2.5T
|On an entirely normal, beautiful fall day in Chester's Mill, Maine, the town is inexplicably and suddenly sealed off from the rest of the world by an invisible force field. Planes crash into it and fall from the sky in flaming wreckage, a gardener's hand is severed as "the dome" comes down on it, people running errands in the neighboring town are divided from their families, and cars explode on impact. No one can fathom what this barrier is, where it came from, and when -- or if -- it will go away.
Dale Barbara, Iraq vet and now a short-order cook, finds himself teamed with a few intrepid citizens -- town newspaper owner Julia Shumway, a physician's assistant at the hospital, a select-woman, and three brave kids. Against them stands Big Jim Rennie, a politician who will stop at nothing -- even murder -- to hold the reins of power, and his son, who is keeping a horrible secret in a dark pantry. But their main adversary is the Dome itself. Because time isn't just short. It's running out.
From the Publisher:
After an invisible force field seals off Chester Mills, Maine, from the rest of the world, it is up to Dale Barbara, an Iraq veteran, and a select group of citizens to save the town, if they can get past Big Jim Rennie, a murderous politician, and his son, who hides a horrible secret in his dark pantry. By the best-selling author of Just After Sunset.After an invisible force field seals off Chester Mills, Maine, from the rest of the world, it is up to Dale Barbara, an Iraq veteran, and a select group of citizens to save the town, if they can get past Big Jim Rennie, a murderous politician, and his son, who hides a horrible secret in his dark pantry. By the best-selling author of Just After Sunset. Two million first printing.
When you consider the poundage and do a page-count, it begins to make sense why it took master novelist Stephen King more than 25 years to complete this book. (Although, it's not like he hasn't stayed pretty busy in the interim.) The scope and heft of this epic work will remind die-hard fans of his early works like IT and THE STAND, and the story is classic King, simple, yet bizarre: On a perfectly normal day, a small town in Maine is mysteriously surrounded by an impenetrable dome. There is absolutely no way out or in. Where the dome came from, what it's made of, or how long it will persist plague the citizens of Chester's Mill, but for King, the real drama is in what the townspeople (and he gives a census-list of characters; more than 100 are mentioned) will do now. They are isolated from the rest of the world and claustrophobically confined under this confounding dome. Alliances and tensions inevitably form: the central one between an Iraq War-vet, a nurse, the town's newspaper owner, and three on-the-loose kids against a nefarious politico and his son, who has a dark and dirty secret stashed away. UNDER THE DOME is vintage King, updated for the 21st-century; it's frightening, gripping, elucidating, and you'll want to devour all its 1,000-plus pages in one sitting.
Born in 1947, Stephen King has become a household name all over the world. His mother raised him and his brother after their father deserted the family in 1950. In high school, King began to write short stories, his first published work appearing in 1968. He attended the University of Maine, graduating with a B.S. in 1970. Up until his first novel appeared, King had worked in an industrial laundry, as a janitor, as well as an English teacher. CARRIE, his debut, was met by a largely indifferent public in 1974. It wasn't until two years later, after King's second novel 'SALEM'S LOT and the filmed version of CARRIE, that King became a major player in the horror field. THE SHINING, his 1977 haunted hotel novel, began a litany of bestsellers, including THE STAND, THE DEAD ZONE, PET SEMETARY, DOLORES CLAIBORNE, and many others. King's work is regarded as instrumental in bringing about a resurgence of interest in horror fiction in the 1970s and '80s. An extremely high percentage of King's voluminous literary output has been filmed, with varying degrees of success, but all serving to carry the name of Stephen King far and wide. He has written nonfiction, given lectures, acted in films, and continues to produce huge novels nearly every year, all of which become instant bestsellers. As an bizarre sidenote, during the summer of 1999 while walking along a back road in Maine, King was struck and seriously injured by a minivan whose driver apparently lost control of the vehicle while being distracted by his dog--thus creating exactly the kind of news item that might have inspired several of King's own novels.
"[W]onderfully written, good, creepy, old-school fun."
"[A] non-stop thrill ride as well as a disturbing, moving meditation on our capacity for good and evil." (starred review)
"[UNDER THE DOME] has the scope and flavor of literary Americana, even if Mr. King's particular patch of American turf is located smack in the middle of the Twilight Zone....Though the book's broad conspiratorial strokes become farfetched, its ordinary souls become ever more able to break hearts....Nowhere in Mr. King's immense body of work have his real and fantasy worlds collided with such head-on force."
- Janet Maslin
"The atrocities pile up fast as King describes with lucid prose and chilling precision the genesis of a fascist regime. It's rendered on a miniature scale but is all the more terrifying for the claustrophobia induced by the setting."
- Jedediah Berry
"Although he's an undisputed master of suspense and terror, what gives King's work heft is his moral clarity. The harrowing climax of UNDER THE DOME stems from a humane vision. It's another work in an oeuvre that identifies compassion as the antidote to evil, whether that evil be human or supernatural. And our stock of literature in the great American Gothic tradition is brilliantly replenished because of it."
- Graham Joyce
"The novel is a monster, but it moves like a short story, devoid of the bloat and wordiness that has plagued the beloved author's latter-period work."
- Rene Rodriguez