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The Institute

by Stephen King

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,4121004,750 (4.08)75
In the middle of the night, in a house on a quiet street in suburban Minneapolis, intruders silently murder Luke Ellis' parents and load him into a black SUV. The operation takes less than two minutes. Luke will wake up at The Institute, in a room that looks just like his own, except there's no window. And outside his door are other doors, behind which are other kids with special talents -- telekinesis and telepathy -- who got to this place the same way Luke did: Kalisha, Nick, George, Iris, and 10-year-old Avery Dixon. They are all in Front Half. Others, Luke learns, graduated to Back Half, "like the roach motel," Kalisha says. "You check in, but you don't check out." In this most sinister of institutions, the director, Mrs. Sigsby, and her staff are ruthlessly dedicated to extracting from these children the force of their extranormal gifts. There are no scruples here. If you go along, you get tokens for the vending machines. If you don't, punishment is brutal. As each new victim disappears to Back Half, Luke becomes more and more desperate to get out and get help. But no one has ever escaped from The Institute.… (more)
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» See also 75 mentions

English (93)  French (2)  Spanish (2)  Danish (1)  Italian (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (100)
Showing 1-5 of 93 (next | show all)
A terrible ending is what ruins it all... ( )
  puripuri | Sep 9, 2021 |
I've got good news and bad news for you.

The good news is, this is a better book than what King has released since...well, quite a while.

The bad news is, it's still only okay.

Yes, yes, King treads familiar territory here...blah blah blah, psychic kids...nefarious shops (this time it's the titular Institute instead of The Shop)... It's [b:Carrie|10592|Carrie|Stephen King|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1166254258l/10592._SY75_.jpg|1552134] mashed up with [b:Firestarter|233667|Firestarter|Stephen King|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1394208032l/233667._SY75_.jpg|1803], tossed into Xavier's Twisted Home for Exceptional Children.

The book is interesting, because King can still build characters and small towns like no one else can. But he's also getting a bit sloppy with showing the strings dangling down to his characters, so you can almost immediately see which lines he's going to pull on and how the characters will jump.

The ending is a spectacle to behold, but it feels as though King is as conflicted as some of the characters when it comes to the outcome. And that lisping voice on the phone that was threatened throughout? Total letdown.

King treads water here with another middling book. It's okay, it's entertaining, it'll probably make a cool television show if they don't muck it up like Under The Dome, but it sure as hell isn't one of his greats. ( )
  TobinElliott | Sep 3, 2021 |
Liked the book - especially the part where he attempts to escape via the train. There was a LARGE build up to this which could have been shorter but that's just King's writing ( )
  jhavens12 | Sep 1, 2021 |
This deserves more like a 3.5. I enjoyed the book. It starts a little slowly and is too similar to Firestarter, but if you like Stephen King you'll enjoy this one. ( )
  Paperandkindness | Aug 11, 2021 |
Review @ www.coffeeandtrainspotting.wordpress.com ( )
  SarahRita | Aug 11, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 93 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Stephen Kingprimary authorall editionscalculated
Briasco, LucaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Staehle, WillCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
And Samson called unto the Lord, and said, O Lord God, remember me, I pray thee, and strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines...

And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars upon which the house stood, and on which it was borne up, of the one with his right hand, and of the other with his left. And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines. And he bowed himself with all his might; and the house fell upon the lord, and upon all the people that were therein. So the dead which he slew at his death were more than they which he slew in his life. --Judges, Chapter 16
But whoso shall offend one of these little ones... it were better for him that a millstone were handed about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea. --Matthew, Chapter 18
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For my grandsons: Ethan, Aidan, and Ryan
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Half an hour after Tim Jamieson's Delta flight was scheduled to leave Tampa for the bright lights and tall buildings of New York, it was still parked at the gate.
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In the middle of the night, in a house on a quiet street in suburban Minneapolis, intruders silently murder Luke Ellis' parents and load him into a black SUV. The operation takes less than two minutes. Luke will wake up at The Institute, in a room that looks just like his own, except there's no window. And outside his door are other doors, behind which are other kids with special talents -- telekinesis and telepathy -- who got to this place the same way Luke did: Kalisha, Nick, George, Iris, and 10-year-old Avery Dixon. They are all in Front Half. Others, Luke learns, graduated to Back Half, "like the roach motel," Kalisha says. "You check in, but you don't check out." In this most sinister of institutions, the director, Mrs. Sigsby, and her staff are ruthlessly dedicated to extracting from these children the force of their extranormal gifts. There are no scruples here. If you go along, you get tokens for the vending machines. If you don't, punishment is brutal. As each new victim disappears to Back Half, Luke becomes more and more desperate to get out and get help. But no one has ever escaped from The Institute.

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