Tapping into our primal fears of modern technology, which made Cell a number-one best seller, Stephen King sets his sights on the latest high-tech gadget in UR, in which a mysterious e-book reader opens a disturbing window into other worlds.
Reeling from a painful break-up, English instructor and avid book lover Wesley Smith is haunted by his ex-girlfriend's parting shot: "Why can't you just read off the computer like everyone else?" He buys an e-book reader out of spite, but soon finds he can use the device to glimpse realities he had never before imagined, discovering literary riches beyond his wildest dreams...and all-too-human tragedies that surpass his most terrible nightmares.
From vintage cars (Christine and From a Buick 8) to household appliances (Maximum Overdrive) to exercise equipment (Stationary Bike), Stephen King has mesmerized us with tales of apparently ordinary machines that take on lives of their own. UR gives this classic theme an up-to-the-minute spin, resulting in a horror masterpiece for our time and for the ages.
©2010 Stephen King (P)2010 Simon & Schuster
"Firm, gripping, and deftly written by a craftsman at the top of his game, this is King at his crisp, clear, page-turning best." (Amazon.com review)
This isn't a novel; it's more of a long short story or a novella. There's no character development; it's totally concept driven. And the concept is one that King has employed again and again, there's nothing new or original here except that the vehicle is a Kindle. He reuses the tower concept, too. It's obvious that this is the first installment of a several, and the tower will gain prominence as it goes along.
King should be ashamed to publish this tripe. Under the Dome was an excellent book in which King showed he can really write, and that he has insight into his characters. Not so with UR. It's as if he just has to write, regardless of content and quality.
Thankfully, the book was on sale. I'll be giving the future installments a pass.
You may get the rare happy ending out of this short story by Stephen King. It was also interesting that he brought back the mysterious "low men." I can't wait to see if they come back in another novel. It made me want to re-read "Hearts in Atlantis." I think I will start tonight!
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