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UR


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64 of 68 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good introduction to your new Kindle
I purchased a Kindle 2 when they first became international, so I thought what better way to start off reading on my new device than an exclusive short story by Stephen King about a Kindle?! This was the first ebook I bought for it.

The story is about a college professor named Wesley Smith who buys a Kindle to "read off the computer" but what arrives is not...
Published on 10 Aug 2010 by I Like Cheese

versus
51 of 54 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Kindling King
I've been a King fan for years, so I couldn't resist downloading this short story for my new Kindle. In it a man receives an e-reader in the mail that has mysterious extra features. I was surprised just how much of a Kindle press release this is. I would have expected this to have been preinstalled with the user guide and the dictionary. It's entertaining in a Twilight...
Published on 25 Sep 2010 by Sockymon


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64 of 68 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good introduction to your new Kindle, 10 Aug 2010
By 
I Like Cheese - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
I purchased a Kindle 2 when they first became international, so I thought what better way to start off reading on my new device than an exclusive short story by Stephen King about a Kindle?! This was the first ebook I bought for it.

The story is about a college professor named Wesley Smith who buys a Kindle to "read off the computer" but what arrives is not what he expected - first of all, his Kindle is pink, not white like everyone else's. Also, it provides books and newspapers from many alternative realities.

At first this did seem very much like a long advert for Amazon's e-reader, making me wonder why as I'd already purchased one (and am reading off it) so they don't need to sell it to me. Anyway, as the story goes on and Wesley discovers that beyond reading books by famous authors which were never published (or maybe even written) in our universe, that many historical events are completely different and it can also tell the future. One event in particular will have massive consequence on his own life forever unless he can stop it. The story did pick up a lot in the second half of the novella - so much so that I read this all in one sitting. The ending was a little weak but for a short story, this wasn't such a big issue for me as I hadn't invested much time in reading it.

For the small price this is well worth a purchase but should have been free with the Kindle, I feel. Not King's best but an entertaining read and with some small references to his other work, King fans (like myself) will appreciate this.
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51 of 54 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Kindling King, 25 Sep 2010
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
I've been a King fan for years, so I couldn't resist downloading this short story for my new Kindle. In it a man receives an e-reader in the mail that has mysterious extra features. I was surprised just how much of a Kindle press release this is. I would have expected this to have been preinstalled with the user guide and the dictionary. It's entertaining in a Twilight Zone kind of way and the Dark Tower tie-ins will please long term King fans too. A bit pricey considering it's short length but enough content to keep my interest.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Book with Three Goals, 3 Jun 2011
By 
John M. Ford "johnDC" (near DC, MD USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
Stephen King, in the guise of this story's protagonist, acquires a Kindle from Amazon.com. Unsurprisingly, King's small-town, college professor alter ego finds more on his new tech toy than he signed up for. It accesses books from alternate timelines, such as new novels by Ernest Hemmingway. The fun really starts when the professor and his confidants access a "future news" feature in their own timeline and break their user agreement by trying to change an event they don't want to experience. The story plays out from there.

It's a good Stephen King story. Not a great one--like The Shawshank Redemption or Bag of Bones. But it is good enough that the three-buck Kindle download price is a fair deal. It was the first book I downloaded after installing the Kindle app on my iPhone. I enjoyed reading it while getting used to the Kindle/iPhone combo. It was efficient to do both at once.

This brings me to an issue, not with King or his story, but with my fellow reviewers. Some are highly incensed that he has written this story to either promote the Kindle or to cash in on its popularity. They feel he has somehow short-changed his readers out of a good story.

I'm baffled: Why do so many people think that we can only do one thing at a time?

I agree the author was riding--and creating--the wave of Kindle popularity. As is clear from the characters in the latter part of the story, he was also generating interest in his other novels. As his fans recognize, King often does this to enjoyable effect. It works as storytelling, so who minds if it works as advertising, too? Accomplishing several goals with the same story elements is something a skilled author is always doing.

In UR, for example, King presents a character that is not quite as clever as he thinks he is. He repeatedly introduces himself the same way: "I'm Don Allman, one of the Allman brothers. I play a mean tuba." This is met with insincere, polite laughter. Such writer's games entertain without slowing down the story. Two things at once--the magician's secret laid bare.

This is a good story that I recommend you read. Yes, it promotes the Kindle; yes, it promotes King's other fiction. If you can read it without undue fussiness about these two things, it can also entertain you. It all depends on where you want to focus.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Readable but far from King's standards., 16 Dec 2010
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
I bought this book because I am a fan of King's work and thought it was cheap. I have so far not read any of his short stories but tended to rather read the very extensive ones like The Stand or IT.
The story is shallow and obviously more of a Kindle marketing trick than anything else. The ending is disappoointing and there is hardly any character development. While it was able to entartain me to a certain degree I found it too short, too linear and too expensive. It actually reminded me a lot more of the Goosebumps stories by R.L. Stine, which I used to read as a kid, and which were very simplistic (being for children obviously) than any other King works.

Not worth the money, seeing as you can get King books 50 times as long and exciting for a better price (considering the lenghth-expense ratio). Three stars, because I can't say the story doesnt have some appeal, especially if you've just bought a kindle and are a fan of The Dark Tower Series.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This is just one long advert for Kindle, 28 Nov 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
Stephen King writes fantastic short stories but UR was a desperate let down. Why? The first third (which is as far as I got before deleting the whole thing in irritation) is one long Kindle marketing spiel: it's small, it holds loads of books, ooh look they're cheaper than hardbacks etc.
Don't waste your money buying an advertisement for a product you probably already own; download Different Seasons or Skeleton Crew instead.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Kindle Story !, 2 Sep 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
So its not the best Stephen King shortie ever written but it was ok. A good way to get used to using your Kindle if its the first book you buy, only took me half an hour to read. Not worth over 2 though.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing Advertorial, 21 Aug 2010
By 
Alison "runninggirlcycling" (Derbyshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
As this is a book that is only available in Kindle or Audio format I was really surprised to be subjected to so much 'advertorial' type content! I've already bought a Kindle and I'm using it to read the book so I don't need to read things like "He had expected the gadget to go for four hundred dollars or so, maybe more if there was a Cadillac model, and was surprised to find it cheaper than that." and "the books were ridiculously cheap" amongst other trite descriptions of how great the Kindle/Amazon are. I might actually agree but in a book it was so contrived and forced. I was surprised that Stephen King would write in such a way. I can only imagine that Amazon made him an offer he couldn't refuse!

The story itself is underdeveloped with a particularly rushed ending which doesn't really resolve much. There are some humorous parts but the characters feel flat without sufficient space for their own character detail and development.

It just isn't up to King's normal high standards. I would possibly give it 2.5 stars, but it's not worth 3. My expectations were very high - King and Kindle, brilliant! But my expectations were not met. Save your money for Under the Dome instead, now that's a superb book!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great premise, excellent execution, 20 Aug 2014
By 
Mark Chitty (North Wales) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
Ur by Stephen King is a short novella, released in 2009 and coming in at just over 20,000 words. Dealing with a very interesting concept – an e-reader capable of multi-dimensional and precognitive searching – King not only manages to give you a plot device you’d (probably) kill for, but does so in such a way that will leave you breathless and very much wanting more.

When old-school English teacher Wesley Smith decides to finally get with the times and orders a kindle, little does he know that what he receives is not just your run-of-the-mill handy device to read his favourite books on, but one that can search across dimensions for novels that authors haven’t written in ours. It’s a staggering discovery, and one that he quickly investigates. Add in the ability to search news stories in the millions of other realities, with some differing greatly from ours, he starts to think himself crazy…

It’s a simple premise, but one that instantly hooked me and dragged me in. It’s not difficult for any bibliophile to tell you that they wished their favourite author had written another novel with certain characters, or re-used a setting for a different story. Hell, that their favourite author had written something that they hadn’t read. Like I said, simple – but very effective.

Of course, King doesn’t stop at this, and as is his M.O., he has very well defined and realised characters telling us this story. Wesley has more to him than just a teacher stuck in his ways with very specific ideas of how the world should work in dealing with reading. There is the broken relationship that drives him, the friendly conversations that come naturally, and his desire to do what is right. It all adds up to a story that passes by way too quickly than should be allowed.

Written before 11/22/63 (perhaps my favourite King novel), Ur clearly shows some of the early ideas put forth in that novel, and this is perhaps one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much. Definitely recommended for a quick and enjoyable read.

On a final note – fans of King’s Dark Tower books will find a few small aspects of Ur rather familiar…
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars advert for kindle, 25 May 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
Been massive fan of Stephen King for many years, but this honestly is garbage . Best thing I can say about it is that it's very short. Avoid.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars UR or YOUR or YOU'RE or . . . what?, 18 Feb 2014
This review is from: UR (Kindle Edition)
Stephen King is a prolific writer and one who has taken an active involvement in almost every format of writing--if not all of them--from comic books to novels to short stories to screenwriting to serialisation; he's done it all. And with the introduction and popularity of the Kindle and other E-Readers, King has found a way to embrace that too.

He wrote this short story, UR, specifically for Kindle users. And it's about a Kindle, too. It's practically a thirty-or-forty page advert for one. But there's a twist.

The main character buys a Kindle from Amazon, but soon learns the Kindle isn't a normal e-Reader. It's pink, for a start. And, worse (or possibly better): it seems to be a portal, or at least a viewing glass, to a plethora of other realities, hundreds of separate universes in which his favourite authors have written many more novels, or in which famous figures have either died earlier or later than in his world. His obsession with the Kindle soon grows, and this is where the story picks up.

But it's also the point where the story loses its power.

I love many King novels and stories, but whenever he deals in supernatural occurrences and events, the dialogue and character interaction in his novels/short stories, becomes stilted and awkward and fake and cheesy. It makes me cringe. And that's what happens here. I loved the story, I was in the story, I couldn't find a fault--then the cringeworthy dialogue began. Everybody started talking in an annoying way, and for that reason the story lost its strength.

I especially hated the way the college kid spoke. King had him say "dude" every now and then, as if that would make him sound like a teenager. But he actually sounded (in my head) like a forty-year old who occasionally says `dude'. I understand the story itself is unbelievable but I could suspend my disbelief because it was written well--but I can't, cannot, suspend my disbelief enough to accept all of the cheesy dialogue and actions.

But if you're not as picky as me when it comes to dialogue, then read the story--it's okay; it's fun for the most part. However, the ending, linking the story to The Dark Tower books is a little bit of an anti-climax, and pointless for people like who haven't read The DT books.

Anyway, check it out, I guess.

Or don't.

But DO buy a Kindle.

I recommend them.

And I don't work for Amazon.

Yet . . .
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