Having read the first four books and enjoyed them it was even more enjoyable to hear the characters come to life by having the book read to me. This story begins to tie up many loose ends from the first four books and helps the reader understand more about the quest for the Dark Tower and what it means. Having heard of the death of the reader shortly after his completion of this book made me sad to think he will not be reading the last two chapters because I felt I had come to know him and he was fantastic.
I thought this sounded like a great book since I am into fantasy and mythology like Lord of the Rings and Eragon. Not that I would compare this book to any of those titles but when I heard "Welcome to Audible Kids" when I started the book on my MP3 player I may have blushed just slightly (I'm 49). Turns out the book is fantastic and so is the reader. I like to think I am of above average intelligence and this book entertained me and left me wanting more and just did not seem at all to be a children's novel. It is rare that a writer can write something that appeals to old and young alike but that is what you will find here. I love the characters and the voices are handled nicely by the narrator. I highly recommend it and the two that follow it as well.
I am not an impatient person and have no problem with the author giving me character background and other foundational story lines before the actual story or plot is unveiled. In this case I gave up after about two cd's because the story just never seemed to start at all. In fairness I listen to books in parts as I drive back and forth to work and run errands but if the book is in any way easy to follow I have never become lost and confused until now. Maybe it got good later on but I did not have the patience to wait for it and moved onto another read.
The reader at first was very boring but as I got to know the character the voice all made sense and it fit perfectly. The book although very even keeled had an undercurrent of spookiness that kept me wanting to know what would happen next. I put myself in Odd's shoes and tried to understand why he felt his gift was both a benefit and a nightmare to him. The twist at the end was totally unexpected because I thought the ending was good without the finale.
At first the readers voice was a bit annoying and the story was slow to develop but once the story began to take shape the voice actually fit the character perfectly. It was not fantasy on a high level in terms of magic and tolkien type imagery but rather a simpler story that developed the characters and helped the reader to understand the times and the lay of the land. The chivalry and etiquette of the time was interesting as compared to todays lack of loyalty and humility so it was refreshing. I could not wait to here what would happen next to lift the curse from Chalion and I felt I wished the book would go on and on rather than ending. Great read!
This book was indeed the most booring book I have ever read or listened to. The reader was unremarkable and frankly there should have been another reader for the male lead because it was hard to tell who was talking at times. I just kept waiting for something to happen because the story was not very compelling and when the curtain rose it was a dud of a conclusion. I thought the book was over at that point but it kept going making me hope and pray that something more was going to happen, maybe a twist or turn, but to no avail because it went back to being boring for another 45 minutes. After the conclusion of the main theme of the story a "and they lived happily ever after" would have done it for me instead of stretching this incredibly lackluster story further to an end that frankly I did not care about.
I have read several reviews that rated this book poorly because the readers were comparing to other books by this author. I typically do the same thing with Stephen King. However, I have not read any other book by this author so had nothing to compare it to and I thought it was very good. A good deal of action sequences mixed between character development and good old fashion grisly murders. And what could you want more than a "who done it" where you do not know until the very end who the culprit is. The author follows up the perceived ending with even more twists and turns. The readers were fantastic and really fit the characters in my opinion and I had trouble putting it down. Not the best I have read but better than most and worth the price as a member of Audible.
This is certainly a unique story line and the book was quite enjoyable at least the first half. Sooner or later you get tired of the same thing happening over and over again and I felt the ending was weak. Maybe the ending would have been better if I ultimately felt something for the characters themselves. If you are going to have a dramatic ending you have to make the reader care what happens to the characters. I was not impressed with the readers, and usually I am, but possibly that had something to do with the lack of emotion I had when it was all said and done. This was an average read and it kept my attention I was just disappointed there was not more when it reached its conclusion.
It is no wonder that in the prologue of the first gunslinger novel King warns that this is a story that he will not live long enough to finish because having read the first four and listened to the last three I would have thought the same if I were the author.
This final chapter of the Dark Tower series brings with it several levels of finality some of a happy nature and others quite sad but each one leaves the reader with a sense of correctness or "KA". This was one of the first times I ever wished one of Kings novels were longer as he tends to be quite verbose. I will miss this group of gunslingers as they have become like family to me along with the reader of the novel I do not think I will find another one that I like better.
You MUST have read or listened to the other 6 books prior to reading this one and if you do this will be a wonderful ending to a rich and detailed story following the lives of vibrant characters especially the magical mystical qualities of Roland who is the brave leader of this Ka-Tet.
Highly recommended and a long road well traveled.
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