All The Right Reads

Fiction Recommendation Experts

2023 Book Review: The Institute

by Stephen King

A Horror, 2019 by Scribner, 561 Pages 

What I Didn’t Like:

  • I like originality so when it felt like The Shining or Clockwork Orange I rolled my eyes.
  • The character we meet and love first takes a big chunk of the book OFF. I spent a lot of time wondering what he had to do with anything and if he’d be coming back. 
  • I felt like the story went on for a few more chapters than it needed to. Of course, I like endings that leave me hanging and keep me thinking so that is likely a personal one. 
  • The pacing felt a little off in the center of this one. It seemed to drag more than I’m used to from this author. 

What I Did Like:

  • Great characters right away. As is typical for King, these characters have such depth that you feel like you know someone just like this. They feel completely real.
  • The mystery surrounding back half was well done. You want to know even while being relatively certain you DON’T want to know.
  • When the two storylines crash together, it works and it’s intriguing. 
  • I like the way the ending came together. I like the big idea the Institute was working under and how that frames an interesting ethical question. 
  • A lot of the choices made important characters feel juvenile, but that’s a GOOD THING since we’re talking about actual children. It’s realistic in that way. 

Who Should Read This One:

  • If the idea of a group of kids who have some predisposition to telekinesis or teleportation being brought to a top secret facility intrigues you, you may be just the niche for this one. 

My Rating: 3 Stars

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