Ebook Review: Stephen King’s “UR”

Since I’ve been on vacation for so long I’ve run through all my backlogs of useful/less information about my writing life. Seems like a great time to dip into a few ebook reviews! First up is Stephen King’s “UR” a short story published exclusively on the kindle, that was actually one of the first ebooks in Amazon’s Kindle library.

“UR” is a tale for Kindle about a Kindle. A mediocre English professor orders a Kindle to spite his ex, only the machine that arrives is a bubblegum pink which the hapless technophobic prof doesn’t realize is an obvious sign that there’s something off about the device. He quickly falls in love with the machine (how could he not) before realizing that his pink Kindle shipped with a few interesting additional features…

Honestly, at first despite being a big Stephen King fan who particularly adores the man’s short fiction, I wasn’t loving this little short. King has this way of creating loveable characters out of even the most heinous villains but this professor went a different way, deliberately pushing the buttons of the very people likely to find and read this little story: snobby, arrogant, demeaning, self deprecating and a rather boring technophobic bibliophile. He doesn’t exactly redeem himself either.

Still this isn’t a negative review, the Kindle is the thing. The description of the story doesn’t give any hint that it comes from the UR, the world of the Dark Tower. That little piece in the  Tower puzzle is pretty much priceless to me as a Dark Tower fan. That said, the story isn’t exactly scary, it misses that mark even though King’s usual thrilling elements are there they come in far too late and lack teeth to bite you with once they finally appear, but most of the bits that tie into the Tower aren’t terrifying either. Worth it or not? Worth it, especially if you’re a Dark Tower fan who enjoys putting all the bits together.

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