Thursday, May 30, 2013

Summertime Creep Out ... Under The Dome Read Along!

It takes a group of readers to bring me back to Stephen King. I haven't picked up any of his fiction since The Stand because that particular novel scared the living bejesus out of me so much that I had to put it down. King has such a way of creating really sinister and creepy characters that get under my skin and make me jittery ... and I don't like jittery. Heck, I don't even like the jittery that three cups of coffee can bring on!

Natalie, blogger over at Coffee and a Book Chick must like coffee jitters AND Stephen King jitters, as she is hostessing a summertime reading of his novel, Under The Dome. This is just in time for us to get the story straight before the television mini-series adaptation hits the tube in June. Well, I'm trying to expand my genres, so I thought I would give thriller/horror genre another try and why not go all out with the king of the genre?

Stephen King and I have funny past. One of my first experiences reading King was with Salem's Lot. The summer that I was nineteen, my family vacationed on Cape Cod for two weeks. Salem's Lot was my beach read. My younger brother, jokester extraordinaire, knew that I was creeping out on the vampire thing and came to the outside of the screen window of my bedroom one night while I was curled up reading . He scratched on the screen and stood there with a blank zombie look while I had a heart attack and screamfest. The creep ... I have never lived it down. Yeah, Stephen King has definitely made an impression ...

When I came down with a severe cold and respiratory infection while reading The Stand, it became too much. I put that book down and never looked back. So coming back to Uncle Stevie is a huge thing for me. I read his memoir On Writing earlier this year, just because I am so curious to see what goes on in that mind of his. Now, I think I might be ready to come back into his creepy fold for a while.

I can't promise I'll make it through this tome, but I'm giving it the old college try! So ... off I go to dive under the dome with the rest of the readers .... I have a funny feeling that things are going to get real weird, real fast!


  1. Microcosm - Noun- 1.)A community, place, or situation regarded as encapsulating in miniature the characteristic features of something much larger. 2.)Humankind regarded as the epitome of the universe.

    I took a sociology course during my university years in which the class was allowed to develop completely within the classroom environment into a small society of learners, that is, we made the course what it was with the professor an active and equal member of the experimental group. Natural leaders stepped forward after the first class in which we all sat ... waiting for something to happen. Followers, shirkers, dramatic-types, observers, and troublemakers - we were all there and they are all there now, under the dome ... humanity in microcosm.

  2. So ... what do I make of Rusty's jaunt to the orchard ? This is an unexpected twist in the plot ... just who, what, how ? At the 3/4 mark in a book, I usually expect to begin mentally wrapping the story up, but there are still so many loose ends. As I was reading this particular section, I was thinking that King had his work cut out for himself when it came to wrapping the book up and satisfying his readers.

    ... I just listened to his Fresh Aire interview from a couple weeks back on NPR in which he says that his stories are 'organic' and that they evolve as he writes them ... this one just took a 'mutant twist' ... without giving anything away for any club members reading this ...

  3. Here's the link for that Stephen King interview on Fresh Air NPR with Terry Gross

  4. I'm glad you're trying Stephen King again Susan! I'm happy to hear that! I have yet to read Salem's Lot or The Stand (and I call myself a King fan) but all of his other books freak me out majorly, like Cell and Pet Sematary. I'm hoping I get further in this book soon. I've been trying to find a balance between other books I'm reading and this huge tome. lol But yeah I'm not liking Junior and Rennie. They're despicable characters. And wow you got far!

  5. "All you guys can do is watch. Like kids looking into an aquarium where the biggest fish takes all the food, then starts eating the little ones." - - Rose Twitchell, owner of Sweetbriar Rose

    This pretty sums up our roles as readers and observers of the Chester's Mill Dome experience in King's novel. And oh, how frustrating to be that powerless! That King takes the role of observer and turns it on its ear when we learn just who is causing the Dome is so typically clever. What is even creepier is the thought that the Dome could be popped down somewhere else on Earth ... but no, there's not enough book left to have that happen by the time we know just who is controlling the Dome. A sequel? Nah ... just kidding.

  6. I am reading along too!! It is fun!! I just made it through 9 hours of the audio book! I didn't read all your comments here because it looks like you might be ahead of me in the book... but I'll stop back by. Here is my progress:


  7. Have made it a point to stop and re-think the story each day, now that I have finished the book ... today, I was thinking how people respond to stress - I am a planner and a cool logical type. I would be the one in Chester's Mills who was drawing off clean water and storing it someplace safe, shutting down all unnecessary electrical and posting no driving or generator usage guidelines to cut air pollution, preserving all the freezer foods to make them last longer, creating a medical supply for home emergencies ... the survivalist in me would definitely kick in ...

  8. Having just finished Da Chen's book Colors of the Mountain, I am thinking about closed societies and the 'dome-like effect' that they project to outsiders. In China, during the Cultural Revolution, there were carefully projected images shown to outsiders like Western governments and media was severely restricted. One could say that the Chinese Communist leadership was (and still is, to an extent) bully leaders. Hmm ... not unlike the town governing selectman in Chester's Mills. Amazing how King's closed society mirror much of what went on within Chinese society at that time - abuse of power, crony-ism, corruption of goods and services, bully tactics to suppress certain citizens, ... amazing the connections one makes between books.

  9. Supremely disappointed in the 'Dome' television production ... right out of the gate, things depart from the book's plot line ... what's with the dead body dumped? Come on ... the entire book could've been put to screen with the use of discreet writing, acting that relies on atmosphere and interpretive acting techniques, and cut-away edits that give the idea without the actual 'in your face' experience. My thought is that the network production wanted to go for the easy way (and a shorter commitment to King with regards to the story). What say you?