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Under The Dome – Book Comment

Under The Dome Book Cover

Under The Dome Book Cover

By: Stephen King
Copyright: 2009
Publisher: Gallery Books, Simon & Schuster, New York, NY
Cover: by Erich Hobbing
Reviewed by: Lynard Barnes

Type: Softcover

Summary: A small town, Chester’s Mill, is cut off from the rest of the world and we get to watch the citizens muddle through the maze of life created by the strong, the weak and the mentally deranged.

As opposed to the post-apocalyptic events of Stephen King’s, THE STAND (published in 1978, 1990), UNDER THE DOME is a mini-apocalyptic story about a town in which the weekly newspaper is called the Democrat and is owned and managed by a “Republican to the core”, Julia Shumway. The dissimulation in Chester’s Mill runs a lot deeper than just the masthead of the town newspaper. The dome descending upon the town, cutting it off from the rest of the world, is the ultimate dissimulation. But that’s jumping ahead. The story, all one thousand pages of it, is just as entertaining as THE STAND, devoid of the overt lines drawn between good and evil.

UNDER THE DOME is Stephen King at his best. I stopped reading King’s novels pretty much after CUJO (1981), never finding any of his storylines matching his first novel, CARRIE, or his later novels such as THE SHINING, THE STAND or THE DEAD ZONE. Once you reach the point of being able to predict where an author is going with a story, there really is no need to take the journey. With King, it became the “wise kid” showing adults the way. The only redeeming feature of the “wise kid” and “his dog” is that it is not “zombies taking over the world”, or “misunderstood” vampires simply trying to make it in the world of daylight. UNDER THE DOME has the “wise kid”—three of them in fact, and they do move the story toward its ending. But they are not the primary focus.

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We’ve Never Been Alone – Book Review

WeveNeverBeenAlon751by Paul von Ward

Publisher: Hampton Roads Publishing Company, Inc., Charlottesville, VA (

Copyright: 2004, 2011

Cover: Nita Ybarra


Reviewed by: Lynard Barnes, December 17, 2012

Summary:  Introduces the concept of Advanced Beings (ABs) to explain world religious history and the extraterrestrial phenomena. The book is an ambitious undertaking, executed with unimpeachable logic.


Once you accept the premise stated in von Ward’s WE’VE NEVER BEEN ALONE, you can sit back and enjoy the unfolding synthesis of ideas, conclusions, and logic. It is a masterful exposition of history. However, arriving at a point of accepting the premise entails traveling a road on which there is at least one intriguing and more compelling detour.

The novel and noteworthy take-away from this book is the absence of the most logical and simplest explanation for what it purports to explain.  Other authors have tackled the mystery of human civilization. WE’VE NEVER BEEN ALONE ranks far above these efforts and achieves through its attention to detail a complete non-mainstream explanation. Like other non-mainstream explanations however, the foundation rests upon an even greater mystery than the mystery of the origin of civilization. In fact, you could make a game of filling-in the missing pieces of the history-puzzle Ward inadvertently creates with his a priori contention that Advanced Beings are the driving force behind human civilization.

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