Book Review: The Institute

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The Institute by Stephen King

Genre: Thriller

Rating: ✨✨✨✨

Bookish Tip: Perfect for a rainy day as the book is so big, it did not fit in my purse.


Do you know what I love about Stephen King? He is so very talented. The first novel I ever read by him was The Green Mile. The one novel I will NEVER read is IT. I’ve watched Stephen King movies like The Shining and Carrie, too. And yet, all of those books and later movies are completely different than the others.

The same can be said about The Institute. Although it is thriller-like, it is also very much science fiction. There is not a lot of gore (if any). There is not a lot of scary. Yet, it is spooky, creepy and horrifying in a totally different way.

Through 561 pages, The Institute takes you on a very detailed, very complex ride. In the middle of the night, Luke Ellis is abducted from his home in Minneapolis and wakes at The Institute in a room that looks very much like his own.

The Institute is not a happy place for children. Almost daily the children are giving shots or are forced to complete scientific experiments at the whims of the staff.

The children – Luke, Nicky, Kalisha, George, Helen, Avery – are the highlight of this novel. They form a bond unlike any other. As a reader, you absolutely feel for them. Their childhood is stripped away within a matter of seconds. And yet, they remain as strong as they can and they decide to fight back.

The adults/staff at The Institute are pure evil. The heinous tests they perform on children are horrifying. As a mom, I had a hard time processing these awful tests. The Institute really pulled on my heart strings. I think it is the fact that there are really adults in this world who would harm and hurt children that pulls the most.

As a forewarning, there are A LOT of questions that takes some time to answer but luckily, Stephen King answers them all for the most part. I appreciate the ending. Is there a happy-ish ending? Yea, for the most part. But the ending is also left a little bit open in order to make you think.


I definitely recommend The Institute by Stephen King. It’s a solid read – enjoyable, thought provoking and classic Stephen King.

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Hardcover | Ebook

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