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I really liked the book, I'm just sort of lukewarm on the ending. But it's kind of a typical King ending in a lot of ways. Something unexplainable, the supernatural. I much more enjoyed the human aspect of how the town reacted to the dome more than why it was there and who put it there. That being said, I enjoyed the book about as much as any recent King novel. There are a lot of characters to keep up with, but it's sort of a necessity with a project like this.
I haven't watched the series, but I'm anxious to start watching some episodes and see how it goes.
This has been discussed before. The symbol on the door is intriguing but I have a hard time reconciling the entities in Under the Dome with the creature from It. While there is certainly no requirement for them to appear as spiders, the things squashed by Ben do seem to be spiderlings. Moreover, these creatures aren't particularly likely to gather together as friends. Moreover, they would likely feed and take form much like the parent entity. Most damning to this notion of all is the fact that some degree of empathy gets shown by one (however small) and that also seems unlikely from entities once removed from the Deadlights.
I will probably finish the book today and I have to say I have enjoyed it hugely, HUGELY. I am struggling a little if I think about the "story" but if I just take it as it comes I seem to have no issue with the suspension of disbelief.
It is just a staggeringly clever conceit to allow an examination of human characters and their inetractions in a stressed set of circumstances. VEry like Lord of the Flies in some ways.
My biggest problem with it is that I have enjoyed it so much I have no idea what I am going to follow it with.
I am on vacations, and the book I read before this one was "It", so I totally recognized the symbol I had seen just a few days before. I also cannot think these creatures are that much like Mr(s). Robert Gray, but since the symbol appeared at the door to Its chamber (which I already see as different than normal space) and in the dome generator, perhaps it represents an access point to this ither dimensional plane, and not any specific species?
I have seen people refer to them as "aliens", which I guess they are. But not in the same sense extraterrestrials from this same Universe and plane of existance, though. It is not as if they come from a neighbor galaxy, subject to the same laws of Physics as we are. They are something else completely, I believe, and the term "aliens" could be too small for them. Even if they are just very young kids.
Spoilers for UTD:
I read some comments in other sites where people were disapointed about the solution. Begging. They think it was too easy and ask why no one had thought of it before. On the other hand, I think that it is very difficult to think straight when facing abnormal situations, like being inside a dome, and much more so when seeing these beings so totally beyond any concepts we may be able to handle. Fear, hate, impotence (including Norrie's questioning, wanting an explanation). I can understand feeling this. But stopping to think "I should ask them to please stop" is not something I would see as a normal reaction, so I am fine with it not being the first option.
Others thought the good guys did not do anything, or mentioned plans but did not used them later, or tried things (like the evidence against Big Jim or the gamble with the Geiger counter) that were "dropped" later). Again, I had no problem with this. They were either plans that failed (the evidence that fell into Andrea's hands) or insurance plans (the Geiger counter, in case Big Jim tried to find their hideout). The explosion cut everyone's plans short. But I think it is important that the characters are shown planning more things (even if they never get the chance to do them), or otherwise they would just have sat there, waiting for the explosion.
Actually, if the explosion had happened some time later, the heroes might have been too far from the Dome to survive. Barbie was no longer comfortable staying so close to the generator, and had suggested leaving. The explosion occured when they were having lunch, so they were still close enough to be saved by the fans.
One person even commented about all the dreams, saying they served no purpose at all. That one just made me roll my eyes. Why does he think giant fans were available at the right time? If not for these premonitions, everyone would have died right after the air was made unbreathable.
At one point, right after the chaos at the town meeting, I thought Carter would just kill Chief Randolph and Big Jim, and become the "big bad" (a more action oriented one than Big Jim, who had bad health). It was a good thing he didn't; I liked how he decided he wanted to be Big Jim's man, only to realize what a pathetic little man "Big" Jim really was. Even if Rennie never realized this, his final fall from grace in Carter's eyes was a strong point for me.
As a final comment, one of my favorite parts was the section told from Horace's point of view. Even in a very depressing setting, it was fun to read.