Tag: The Drawing of the Three

Stephen King – The Dark Tower | Review

Title: The Dark Tower

Author: Stephen King

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 710

Rating: 8/10

 

Stephen King - The Dark Tower

Stephen King – The Dark Tower

 

And so it ends. This book is the seventh and final book in Stephen King’s Dark Tower series, although you could count The Wind Through the Keyhole as an eighth book if you were so inclined. Either way, this rounds off the series and reveals the end of the story, as well as what happens when Roland finally reaches the Dark Tower.

I’ve got to be honest, the first couple of hundred pages seemed to drag for me, and I found it difficult to get into the story line. But a little later on, it got good again, and we were soon rolling along the path of the Beam and towards the Tower and the Crimson King. It’s certainly true that a lot happens here – we get to learn more about Mordred, the anti-Roland, and we learn the ultimate fate of each of the characters that we’ve met along the way.

And so, of course, we have to deal with death – in a series like this, with so many characters, there’s no way that all of them are going to make it to the end. But don’t worry – I’m not going to tell you who dies, because that’s ka’s will, and you’ll find out all about it in your own time. That’ll be fun!

 

Stephen King

Stephen King

 

What I will say is that I saw the ending coming around 50 pages before it happened, which was a little annoying because the whole series was around 3,500 pages long. That said, it didn’t ruin it – if anything, it felt just right. It’s hard to explain it – if you’ve read the rest of your series then you’ll know what I mean, because it felt just like it was meant to be.

Another thing that I ought to mention is the size of the book, and the print. See, my copy doesn’t look as thick as some of the other books, and after the relatively slim size of Song of Susannah, the book that comes before this, I was expecting to blitz through this pretty quickly. But then I started reading it, and I realised that the print is so small that it’s actually difficult to focus on. It’s a book that you’ll need to read in the day, and not because it’s scary – it’s because it’s so damn difficult to see, and you’ll need good lighting if you want to be able to make out the print.

But other than that, I was happy with this – it was a great read, especially during the latter half of the book, and it forces you to keep reading until the end. As the reader, you feel like a part of Roland’s ka-tet, and when the ending rolls around, you feel like a part of the team. And if you’re anything like me, you’ll start to see the symbolism all over the place – roses, towers, and ka. After a while, it all starts to feel real, which made me want to call in sick because I figured that this ain’t Mid-World, so it doesn’t matter.

 

Stephen King Quote

Stephen King Quote

 

Overall, then, I’d say that The Dark Tower is a satisfying conclusion to the series, but it’s far from the best one on the market. I can’t explain why, but The Drawing of the Three was my favourite of the lot so far. This one does a good job of continuing the series, but it’s far from exceptional – good, but not great.

But I’d still recommend it, especially to lovers of fantasy and science fiction, as well as people who just appreciate good storytelling. See, the thing with The Dark Tower is that it transcends genre, and for anyone who appreciates a good read, this is good stuff. Unfortunately, you do need to stick with it, and to spend a lot of time ploughing through the pages.

Luckily, it’s a pleasure – even despite the difficulties I faced throughout it, I’m glad that I stuck with it. In fact, I’ve already started reading The Wind Through the Keyhole, the final Dark Tower novel, which was written after the series was completed and which fits somewhere in the middle of it. I’d recommend it – this too!

 

Stephen King Quote

Stephen King Quote

 

Click here to buy The Dark Tower.

 


Stephen King – The Waste Lands | Review

Title: The Waste Lands

Author: Stephen King

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 584

Rating: 7/10

 

Stephen King - The Waste Lands

Stephen King – The Waste Lands

 

The Waste Lands is the third book in Stephen King’s epic Dark Tower series, and so far it’s the one that I’ve enjoyed the least. It’s also the one that was the longest, so perhaps that has something to do with it. Either way, it’s hard to call, because the different books in this series are really just one long, interconnected saga; you can’t really have one without the others, and you can’t really read them out of order.

I should warn you here that if you haven’t read the first two books in this series then this review might contain spoilers. But spoilers are inevitable, because the story picks up directly after the ending of The Drawing of the Three, in which the gunslinger made new allies by pulling them into his world. Those same characters are here again, and they’re becoming gunslingers in their own rights; now Roland isn’t alone, and he has to continue to follow the path towards the mystical Dark Power with his newfound comrades.

It’s interesting, because King manages to answer a lot of questions here, but he also opens up just as many new ones. Even though I didn’t enjoy this as much as the first two books, and even though it was a long read with plenty of pages, I still can’t wait to get started on book number four, especially because this book ends on something of a cliffhanger.

 

Stephen King

Stephen King

 

I also like the way that King used riddles in both an abstract way – as part of the narrative – and in a tangible way, as a plot device. Riddles are commonplace throughout the story, and I liked the way that King would introduce you to one and then deliver the answer later on in the book; we also learn that Roland used to learn riddles as a child, and they’re required at the end for them to progress with their mission.

We also get to find out exactly what the Waste Lands are, and we’re reintroduced to some old characters and given a chance to meet a couple of new ones. It’s interesting, because I couldn’t help feeling like this book developed a bunch of the characters but didn’t really progress the plot too much. It’s a long old series, and I want to feel like I’m getting closer to the tower. While we did inch a little closer this time, it felt like we were moving at a snail’s pace.

Overall then, this book is definitely worth reading if you’ve read the first two books in the series, but you need to bear in mind that the end will leave you hanging and that it feels like we’re losing a little momentum. I’m hoping that King can ramp the momentum back up again with the next book in the series.

And I will be reading it, for sure. That’s the thing with Roland and his friends – it’s eminently readable, and even if it feels like it’s going a little slowly, you still power through the pages. I can’t imagine anything stopping me from finishing the series now that I’ve started. It’s a decent read, and The Waste Lands is that sort of ‘middle book‘ that’s there because it needs to be there. It doesn’t stand out above the other books, but it is still worth reading despite that. So what are you waiting for?

 

Stephen King Quote

Stephen King Quote

 

Click here to buy The Waste Lands.

 


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