The Institute

The Institute

A Novel

eBook - 2019
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Baker & Taylor
Published to coincide with the release of It: Chapter Two, a supernatural thriller finds an abducted youth imprisoned in an inescapable institute, where teens with psychic abilities are subjected to torturous manipulation. By a #1 best-selling author. 1.25 million first printing.

Simon and Schuster

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Stephen King, the most riveting and unforgettable story of kids confronting evil since It.

In the middle of the night, in a house on a quiet street in suburban Minneapolis, intruders silently murder Luke Ellis’s 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 ten-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.

As psychically terrifying as Firestarter, and with the spectacular kid power of It, The Institute is Stephen King’s gut-wrenchingly dramatic story of good vs. evil in a world where the good guys don’t always win.

Publisher: New York :, Scribner,, 2019
Edition: First Scribner hardcover edition
ISBN: 9781982110598
Characteristics: 1 online resource (561 pages)
Alternative Title: Axis 360 eBooks


From the critics

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Jun 20, 2020

It's as perfect a Stephen King book as I've ever read. I enjoyed it immensely!

May 04, 2020

Stephen King. What a gift. What a talent. What else needs to be said? Nothing, really, but then again, conversations about him could be endless. I know these this book. King's character development is amazing. I love a lot of these people but appreciate that I feel like I KNOW even the bad ones. This book was gripping and I am SAD that I finished it. I want it to go on and on.

Mar 23, 2020

My first Stephen King novel and I just couldn't say how deeply disappointed I was. Although, I do understand that his genre favors the obscure and fantastic, the story was flat, unbelievable, and good gravy WHY SO LONG? The lengthy details added absolutely nothing of value. King, heralded as one of the best writers of the 20th century, well... it's just somebody's opinion.
This one is a NO for me.

Mar 09, 2020

This was good until a co-worker spoiled it for me. Not all that original but I'm not going to spoil it for others. I've read all his books and his sons' as well. I would suggest it if someone asked.

Feb 26, 2020

Nice study of a basic moral philosophy quandary.

Hillsboro_RobP Feb 10, 2020

The Institute is one of King's better modern works, though it doesn't quite cross over into a game-changer. It's a page-turner with a few of King's minor flaws (weird idioms no longer in use, a strange need to identify every character's attractiveness) but many of his major ones (grotesque detail, spoiling his own plot, taking things in an uncomfortable direction) have been left out.
With a twisting plot and enjoyable characters, the length breezes right by. If you need a kids vs. bad guys book written for adults, this is a strong choice.

Feb 07, 2020

Also my first Stephen King novel. Despite the fact that it was 500+ pages, I did not often feel plagued with unnecessary details. Some parts were drawn out, but for the most part I didn't mind. I found myself eager to find out what happened! This institute abducts children and runs unethical experiments on them to harness their mental powers (telepathy and telekinesis).. given this concept, it was dark but not too dark.

Jan 29, 2020

This is classic SK, harkening back to the days of The Tommyknockers and It. Complete with mischievous foul mouth kids, mad scientists and blue collar heroes. If you’re not one of his fans, I don’t recommend jumping on the bandwagon with this offering as it’s quite long.

JCLS_Ashland_Kristin Jan 21, 2020

Fans of King will enjoy, but this one won't win over converts.

Jan 17, 2020

My favourite Stephen King book right now. It reminds me of Stranger Things a bit - with the kids and abilities. I love that Stephen King isn't afraid to make R rated novels surrounding kids. I really enjoyed this book, definitely check it out.

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Add Notices
Aug 12, 2019

Coarse Language: Obviously a bit of profanity, since it's a Stephen King book.

May 13, 2019

Frightening or Intense Scenes: Minor Frightening Scenes

May 13, 2019

Violence: Minor violence

May 13, 2019

Coarse Language: There are swear words since it's a Stephen King book, but that should NEVER stop children from watching or reading something, as long as they are smart enough to know not to repeat those words.


Add Age Suitability
Nov 28, 2019

Heatherf74 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

Aug 12, 2019

007Gatsby thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

May 13, 2019

007Gatsby thinks this title is suitable for All Ages


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