Roland Deschain of the line of Eld, and his ka-tet, Jake Chambers, Eddie and Susannah Dean, and Oy the billy-bumbler, take on the role of The Magnificent Seven or The Seven Samurai in the next volume of Stephen King’s opus, the Dark Tower saga.
The fifth installment of the fantasy/western/ horror/science fiction series sees the ka-tet being summoned to a town, Calla Bryn Sturgis to stand against the child-stealing invaders who ravage their town every twenty odd years.
But of course, that isn’t the only thing at work, there are journeys to New York that help and terrify our friends as they seem to draw closer to their ultimate goal. There is a rose in a vacant lot that has a connection to the tower, and a book store owner whose product delivers a stunning reveal at the end of the book.
As the group prepares to defend the town from the wolf-masked invaders, we are given new glimpses into the worlds that King has created, as we begin to see even more crossover from his other novels. We’ve bumped into Randall Flagg aka Walter aka the Man in Black, in this story we bump into the low men who rear their red-eyed heads in other stories, and of course, one of the main characters of this tale is Father Callahan who has found a home in Calla Bryn Sturgis who arrived there after traveling the hidden roads of America following the events of ‘Salem’s Lot.
And of course there is a troubling reveal about Susannah halfway through with the discovery of Mia, and the chap.
It seems no matter what book I am reading in this series, the one I am reading is my current favorite. And this one is absolutely stunning, there is some great character bits, the moments in New York are troubling and amazing, the discovery of Black Thirteen, and the wonderful reveals that make the reader realize how interconnected King’s works tend to be.
There is some wonderfully meta stuff, and it’s cool to see how the realms that the Gunslinger and his ka-tet are travelling through are influenced by things from our world, like Star Wars, Harry Potter, and Marvel comics.
A fun and tower(?)-ing read, this is a great ride that makes for a wonderful addition to the series and I love the cliffhanger ending we are given, leaving us gasping, and eager for the next installment.
And that’s what will be coming my way in a couple of weeks, when I dig in to The Song of Susannah.
If you haven’t read this series, it may be time to dig into, and if you have, maybe’ it’s time to revisit it…