200 Words or Less

200 Words or Less: Under the Dome by Stephen King


Welcome to 200 Words or Less, a weekly Friday feature here on The Tattooed Book Geek where I will bring to you reviews/thoughts of 200 words or less from the books I read before I started blogging. We all have them, books that we read and loved or even read and hated before we decided to start blogging and what better way than a quick fire review of 200 words or less to share your thoughts on them.

My Choice:


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.

Under the Dome by Stephen King.

Under the Dome focuses on a town that is one day trapped under a mysterious dome. It’s a slow-paced and character driven read showcasing the degradation of society under adverse and stressful conditions, a character study, as the residents struggle to cope with their new lives living in the pressure cooker of he dome.

You have an eclectic cast of characters that you come to care about and in ‘Big Jim’ Rennie and his son, Junior, you get a couple of villains added to the tale that you really hate. Unfortunately it’s when you reach those final pages that things start falling apart.

A book is a journey, its ending the destination. The ending for Under the Dome leaves you thinking WTF, questioning the destination and lamenting the hours spent getting there. The climax is an absolute head scratcher.

For the most part the book is a pleasure to read, for 950 pages of the books gigantic 1000 plus page length it’s a 5* read, you lose yourself in King’s story and I’d recommend it. Just be warned that the last 50 pages and ending are a 1* read and will unfortunately leave you with a bitter aftertaste.

Quotes from Under the Dome:

“She can’t help it,’ he said. ‘She’s got the soul of a poet and the emotional makeup of a junkyard dog.”

“If you can’t laugh when things go bad–laugh and put on a little carnival–then you’re either dead or wishing you were.”

“Murder is like potato chips: you can’t stop with just one.”

“Two can keep a secret if one of them is dead,”

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60 thoughts on “200 Words or Less: Under the Dome by Stephen King

  1. It’s the typical King formula for this one: fantastic writing, pacing, character depth and story … with a stupidly annoying ending that felt as though he had write himself into a corner and didn’t know how to escape said corner.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. It’s why I’m afraid of reading the Dark Tower series. I don’t want to invest a lot of time into a series only for the ending to be something like ‘aliens did it’ or ‘and then Roland woke up and cursed the fact that he had to go to school.’

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I totally agree. It’s like Stephen King thinks “this has gone on for too long now, how can I wrap it up quickly” and just throws in a totally farfetched idea so he can say he’s done. I avoided the Dark Tower for years but it’s actually really really good. You have to get through the first book (which is a bit meh) – I actually got more from reading the two page recap at the start of book two than I did from reading the whole of book one – but from then on its fantastic. I’ve still got a few books to go so I can’t vouch for the ending but I’d definitely recommend it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I may have to look into the Dark Tower then but it’s yet another series, ten books I think?? And I’m not sure I want to read something that long, so many books and not enough time as it already is.😞

      Yeah, he did wrap Under the Dome up quickly and it was definitely farfetched, just so weird, far better ways to have ended the book.😀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I know what you mean, it is a bit daunting starting a whole new series when there are so many other books, but they are good. I hope the Dark Tower doesn’t get wrapped up by pesky alien kids!


      2. I’ve read The Malazan Book of The Fallen series by Steven Erikson, it’s a 10 book series, each are around 1,000 pages so I’m not adverse to long series, but with new books coming out and lots of other books already, a series would be a big undertaking, I’m not a fast reader either how some people can plough through a book no matter its length in a couple of days but I might get round to it someday.

        Oh man, damn alien kids, hell no! There was far better ways to end the book!

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I think there were three seasons. It went WAY out there. It didn’t really end. It was left for another season. Then it got cancelled…..

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I loved this book, minus the ending as you pointed out. Because of my love for the book I decided to watch the TV show, and I have to admit I loved the first two seasnons, the third was a shit show. They proably should have made it into a mini series, that would have done it justice. Have you seen the show/or willing to watch it? Great mini review!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I saw the first series of the TV show and didn’t get around to watching the others, then people told me it went off in different directions to the book and I just never bothered with it. I agree that a miniseries would have been better, there was a The Stand miniseries in the mid nineties which was great and it’s a longer book even than Under the Dome.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah it went off in a very different direction, and not in the best way, it’s probably best you didn’t continue with it.
        Gosh a book longer than Under the Dome, I’m still trying to make my way through all of King’s work, but man that guy has so much stuff! I can’t read a lot of it at once either because then I get bored and all his stories start to sound the same so I have to pace myself. But I’ll have to check that one out!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ha, yeah, it’s surprising isn’t it considering Under The Dome was 1,000 pages, The Stand is about 200 pages longer.😂 It is longer than Under The Dome to, I think it’s the same length as The Stand but I haven’t read It.

        Totally agree, he definitely has a lot of stuff to get through and unfortunately he often writes rather crappy endings!😂 I agree about his stories sounding the same, I’m a fan of his work but haven’t read many of what he’s wrote as I have to be in the mood for it.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Man, haha, maybe one day I’ll get to it. Yes! His endings aren’t always the greatest, because you just feel kinda cheated when you get to the end. I also agree I have to really want to read his stuff, or I haven’t read one of his books in a long time, in order to read it.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I absolutely love King. I am pretty sure that thanks to his many tomes, my bookshelves could use some additional support beams. He can definitely pump out the hefty ones 😉 But I am not sure if I will tackle this if the ending is truly a 1 star. Endings are everything in my world. They make or break books completely.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha, if endings are everything then I’d pass on this, terrible, just absolutely terrible and such a stupid thing, I could easily have offered a couple of far better endings than the one in the book though mostly any ending would have been better!😂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It definitely had the nice shock appeal, but something felt too abrupt for me. I guess that is the beauty of films and especially reading, we all have our own personal experience and connection 😉 I am guilty of enjoying a lot of titles many hate haha.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That is very true, we can’t all like the same things.😀 I think the ending had to be abrupt though (if you mean how quickly the army appeared after bang bang) to give that whole shock value and if they’d just waited, if it had been drawn out more it would have given an emotional impact but as it was it was a shock.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I remember getting to the ending of this one and I was SOOOO mad! I hated it!! It’s been a few years since I read that one and I still think about it. The more time I’ve had to think, the more I appreciated the ending. If a book can make you think about it for a few years after, I think it’s served its purpose!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Crappy endings be crappy endings, yo!
    Crazy to think that a few 1* 50 pages can have such a huge impact on the otherwise 5* 1000+ paged book…
    I remember reading a really good crime thriller… it was like all guns blazing and mega action… and in the end the MC was just having a dream and I just threw the book across the room with a few choice words. Horrible! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol at yo! Da Queen has gone all hip hop!😂 I think it’s that if the beginning of a book is bad then you think it’s great that it improves throughout and if the ending is quality it makes up for the poor start but if the ending is crap its the last thing you read in the book and the last impression that you’re left with. Lol at the few choice words, I don’t think I even did that, probably just wondered what the f*ck had just happened and how could it possibly have been so bad, utter drivel, I guess there was some supposed clever meaning behind the ending but it was lost on me!😂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, you can’t exactly tell the Queen she can’t speak one way or another! 😛 Besides, gotta go with the times, be popular with the young ones and all.. hahaha
        Yes, you hit the nail on the head there, the ending is the last impression you’re left with and impacts the whole reading experience greatly…
        Remember when I posted on Fb about the movie Cell, based on King’s book.. well… jaysus, the ending was like totally bamboozling… It truly made me think it’s just too cryptic or whether I wasn’t intelligent enough to pull the parallels and the meaning that was tried to be put across… sometimes, thos endings are cool… sometimes, not so much…

        Liked by 1 person

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