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Kevin G. Fisher "kgf" RSS Feed (Ontario)

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Under the Dome: A Novel
Under the Dome: A Novel
by Stephen King
Edition: Paperback
Price: $15.36
300 used & new from $0.01

206 of 259 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A real chore of a novel, November 22, 2010
I'm quite confused by all of these glowing 5-star reviews for this book, and I wonder if this isn't another case of blind fanboyism.

There is very little I can say is redeeming about this novel. The size alone isn't the problem; if the story within it were better, the size wouldn't even be noticeable.

The story starts out interestingly enough, giving you a hook that makes you want more. The problem is, the more you read, the more of a chore it becomes. The one thing that strikes me is how one-dimensional the protagonists are. There is really very little to them...nothing about them that really makes you CARE about them. The bad guys on the other hand...

The villains of "Dome" are written in excruciating detail. Every murder, every act of vile cruelty, every lewd thought, is described in glorious detail. Thanks to the likes of "Big Jim" and his idiot son, I stopped wanting to read more of this story. They are vile people who just get worse, and there is no satisfying comeuppance for them even by the end. The whole TOWN is run by scumbag bullies, and in the end this just foreshadows the truly awful ending. What's King's message? Bullies always win?

Even King's use of language grated on me from early on. His overly familiar use of common vernacular and hick-talk...always calling generators "gennies" and using words like "beshitted" (is that even a real word?) smacks of an author that no longer really has to WORK to sell his novels anymore. New authors would never get away with this overly familiar style of's just lazy writing.

Through the whole novel I was searching for that hidden thread that would tie things together and make sense of the Dome. Between religious fanatics, drug labs, secret power struggles and the military, surely there was SOMETHING that ties it all together, some shared dark secret! Nope. Aliens did it. There is no reward whatsoever for the reader trying to puzzle out the story (think "Lost"). And just when you think you've had enough of The Redneck Rennie Show and his gang of juvenile thugs, guess what? The deus-ex-aliens are teen-aged bullies too!

The ending was so unsatisfying I think that's it for me...I'm done with King. He's only a shadow of the creative talent that created "The Dead Zone." I'd give this zero stars if I could.
Comment Comments (25) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 7, 2014 3:00 PM PST

Vapor Trails
Vapor Trails
Price: $5.00
143 used & new from $0.01

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastic Return, July 7, 2005
This review is from: Vapor Trails (Audio CD)
The reviews for this album are as numerous as they are diverse. I'm a bit shocked at the harshness that this album is receiving from some (but I see that the same individual seems to be giving low rankings on ALL Rush albums regardless of content).

Anyway, the album: I find that Vapor Trails (interesting that they chose the American rather than Canadian spelling of "vapour") is difficult to fully appreciate without having read Neil's book, "Ghost Rider". Both book and album seem to compliment one another.

For instance, the inner liner of the CD has images of Tarot cards. "Peaceable Kingdom" also references the Tarot. "Ghost Rider" describes a journey across the continent. If you haven't read Neil's book, you're not going to fully appreciate these references. (I almost think that the album is a compendium to Neil's journey of self-discovery and regeneration described in his book).

"Test for Echo" was interesting in that the trademark synth of Rush's previous decade had been almost completely abolished (with only the merest hint here and there). "Test for Echo" was quite guitar driven and smooth; quite optomistic and fun.

"Vapor Trails" is even more guitar driven than "Test for Echo". The album feels raw, aggressive, and fast with only a few moderate slow-down "musings" here and there. If the album feels dark, the sun is never far away ("Shadows on the road behind/Shadows on the road ahead")...the album never leaves us in a desolate place, but rather charges forward relentlessly.

The album opens with "One Little Victory"--interestingly, the song begins with a mini drum solo of sorts, an aggressive beat that leaves no doubt to the listener that Neil is back and he means business (it almost invokes the beginning of "Ballroom Blitz" by Sweet).

I find the tracks on this album to have a jagged edge to them. Everything FEELS loud--perhaps it's because Neil, and Rush as a whole, are going through a rather painful rebirth after such a terrible string of tragedies. Every song seems to journey down a dark path, but hint at something just beyond ("Out of the Cradle", "Earthshine").

Personally, I cannot put this album down. After the near dissolution of this great band, there is something intensely satisfying about how this album comes off. Defiant; ragged; strong. And loud...wonderfully loud.

Earth N Bass
Earth N Bass
22 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing World-beat for all, October 4, 2004
This review is from: Earth N Bass (Audio CD)
I stumbled across this album quite accidentally at my local record store, in the "Various" folder of the world music section. The thing that caught my eye was the label--Triloka, whom I've dealt with in the past. They've produced some truly innovative stuff, so I decided to give this a go.

What a purchase. This album is 1000% worth the price and then some. This is world beat at it's best..quite simply the best sampling of voices from around the world mixed into an album that would shake any dance floor. It is truly a melting pot of've got electronica melted into traditional instruments of every style. The voices come from every corner of the globe.

This is one party you do NOT want to miss. I wish I could rate this a '6'.

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