Listening to the Wastelands has been as intense as reading it on hardcopy. I do not want to take the headphones off even though I know I must sleep to go to work in the morning. Listening to Frank Muller narrate absolutely draws you into the story as being part of everything that is happening. Absolutely Amazing!!!!!!!
Enjoying audiobooks daily!
King did it again with book 3. Except this time he reached new heights, or depths, of insanity in Roland, Eddy Dean, Susanna and newly wretched from a house of horrors Jake from book 1. A mechanical bear with maggats eating him alive, the Grays, Blain the train and a demon that may have impregnated Susanna in a graphic sex scene. I was stunned, appalled and amused. I admit I loved it! Will continue this series just so I can keep saying "It can't get crazier than this?" then be proven wrong!
It's well-told tale with imaginative settings and characters and scenes, some of whom are original and interesting, and a couple who just don't work for me. On the other hand, it's a story that has slight mythic overtones but doesn't seem to have a grander purpose than entertainment. Some of the settings are reminscent of the post-apocalytpic worlds that were so common in 80s movies and fantasy, where a once advanced civilization has reverted to a tribal, superstitious world after some as-yet unrevealed calamity. Mad Max, Planet of the Apes, etc.
It's a rich story with King's usual attention to detail and sometimes maddening technique of drawing the suspense of a scene out to an agonizing degree. In that sense it's an excellent book. Compared to his later works like "Duma Key" or "Bag of Bones," it offers less beyond just the story it is telling. So far, at least, anyway. The entire series seems to be developing, so I'm hoping later books gain some of King's later sophistication.
Also I just hate the way Frank Muller reads King. He reads other works with an impressive sophistication, but King he reads with an over-the-top melodrama that makes me just turn off the book after a while so I can recover. It apparently works for others, though, so it may be a matter of taste.
So, good story, great settings, some annoying characters and bad scenes, and a reader that got on my nerves, but I still gave it four stars. I would have given it three and a half if that were possible, but it just tipped to four because I like King's detailed settings.
The Waste Lands is the best in the series so far. If you found the Gunslinger drawn out or the drawing of the three too confusing, I urge you to read the Waste Lands. There's a big surprise!
By far the series just gets better and better and Frank Muller does an amazing job of narrating. I was skeptical at first when he took over last book as I really enjoyed the first narrator but he has done a magnificent job of bringing the characters to reality. Can't wait for book #4.