The Dark Tower books have so far been quite an experience , starting off as an incomprehensive snooze-fest in the first book , it caught pace and become a stunning piece of fiction in the next two books, but the 2 books that followed The wastelands were really really dull and felt like a filler episode in the adventure towards the mystical tower. But I have a policy , I never quit reading , even if a book is bad and so here I am with the penultimate book of the Dark Tower series.
Book Succinct :
Series : Dark Tower / Pages : 544 / Genres: Fantasy , Fiction , Sci-fi, Horror
To give birth to her “chap,” demon-mother Mia has usurped the body of Susannah Dean and used the power of Black Thirteen to transport to New York City in the summer of 1999. The city is strange to Susannah…and terrifying to the “daughter of none,” who shares her body and mind.
Saving the Tower depends not only on rescuing Susannah but also on securing the vacant lot Calvin Tower owns before he loses it to the Sombra Corporation. Enlisting the aid of Manni senders, the remaining katet climbs to the Doorway Cave…and discovers that magic has its own mind. It falls to the boy, the billy-bumbler, and the fallen priest to find Susannah-Mia, who, in a struggle to cope with each other and with an alien environment “go todash” to Castle Discordia on the border of End-World. In that forsaken place, Mia reveals her origins, her purpose, and her fierce desire to mother whatever creature the two of them have carried to term.
Eddie and Roland, meanwhile, tumble into western Maine in the summer of 1977, a world that should be idyllic but isn’t. For one thing, it is real, and the bullets are flying.
What I LIked :
Starting off , the first thing that I truly appreciate in this book , is the number of pages . Standing at just over 500 pages , this book reduced around 400 pages from its previous 2 predecessors. Normally lack of pages in a great tale is something I actually complain about , but for this series its not the case , since in the previous 2 books , pages were there just for the sake of making the book thicker instead of making up a great story .
Wolves in Calla in particular was guilty of having pages after pages of dull narrative and unnecessary descriptions that have no impact on the story or the imagination of the readers . With a reduced amount of pages , King managed to make this book feel a lot fast paced as he cramped a lot of story in the limited amount of pages and I was actually very thankful for that .
“Anger is the most useless emotion,” Henchick intoned, “destructive to the mind and hurtful to the heart.”
― Stephen King,
Meanwhile the story revolving around Roland and Eddie was action packed and it was super fun to read specially as once again the previous two books somehow had around 50 pages of action in a 1000 page book , this one had around 150-200 pages of action in a 550 page book .
Similar details and narratives in this book seemed to be headed somewhere and had some impact on the story of this book and that of the whole series . Basically it didn’t feel like the story was dragged on , for most of the book . In fact I had sort of forgotten what this whole series was about with the unnecessary divergence from the true quest of Roland and co. This book however brings that quest back in sight and feels like the end is truly near
What I Didn’t Like :
Ever since the end of the Wastelands book , Susanah had either little to do or become sort of a dull character , this book didn’t improve that status quo for the only female lead of the story , meanwhile this book was also heavy on the Susanah story and this led to a lot of mediocre to eye-rolling to simply dull moments and sure they weren’t as dull as Pere Callahan’s story moment from the previous book , but they were at the end of the day dull.
Meanwhile there were a lot of chapters that felt unnecessarily repetitive , one was about a girl who saw Susanah appear on the streets of New York and another was about Jake and Callahan getting a souveneir from Susanah . Both these instances were repeated once in Susanah’s POV chapter and once on the aforementioned characters POV chapters.
“I hold to no God,” Roland said. “I hold to the Tower, and won’t pray to that.”
― Stephen King,
Talking of Characters , while we do revisit a few old characters there were a few new secondary characters added and they felt boring , irrelevant , unimpressive and heck ! I’m writing this review just 3 days after finishing the book and I have already forgotten one of those new secondary character’s name.
But the biggest reason , that this book is rated on most places as the weakest installment in the whole series , is something that can’t be addressed without going into spoiler territory . But let’s just say that King does something that breaks all sorts of 4th wall but while doing so King somehow made himself look rather silly and arrogant ,however at the same time its’s something that I do feel is ingenious, as in , I don’t think I’ve ever seen any author do something like this before , but at the same time really it is somewhat crass at the final result .
Again I don’t want to go into spoilers so I’ll just say that what he did was somewhat innovative but at the same time a little offensive .
When I decided and started The Dark Tower series , I was legit excited , it was my first buddy read with my real life bibliophile friends , and it was a highly acclaimed fantasy book series on which a movie was supposedly on its way (and with Idris Alba in it) . But as I reach the conclusion of the book series I’m not sure I’d be recommending this as a Fantasy must read . Of this 7 book series I have managed to only enjoy 2 books so far. And Sure I admit a re-read will mean, that number to rise to maybe 3 books but at the end of the day 3 books out of 6 being good and the other 3 being dull doesn’t make for a good view. Either way one more book to go , maybe that will turn things upside down for me.
Check out my other reviews from the Same series:
Have you read the Song of Susanah, do you plan to?
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