What I finished: with two days to spare, even! \o/ Wizard and glass Book 4 of the Dark Tower by Stephen King.

I have... such astoundingly Mixed Feelings about this book. *blinks dazedly* There are no explicit spoilers under the cut, but there are many “I’m glad I got to read it cold and not knowing” things. So take that as you will.

First, not even a little spoiler:
Competency kink I didn’t realise I had: people riding/guiding their horses using only their legs/without their hands. Holy shit, I am so there for that.

I loved the riddling on the train so much. And the walking into *The Stand’s Kansas, and the continued figuring out each other’s whens. Also how smart and capable they all are.

I am frequently ambivalent about ‘stories-within-stories’/lengthy flashbacks, and this one started out as no exception. I am so glad I got through the first hundred pages or so of the tale -- enough to get invested in it for itself -- before I registered that it was in fact going to take up the whole book rather than just a part. I may not have been able to make peace with the story-within-the-story before that investment kicked in, but once it did, damn.

I wrote this bit straight after finishing the flashback sequence, and before resuming the current ka-tet's story:
oh god I’m so proud of them, taking on forty between the three of them. And I love the three of them and how even when it’s pitched as “a woman has addled your brains”, it’s accompanied almost immediately by them kneeling in the dirt and declaring their love for each other. Also, when they bring her on board, she might not be a gunslinger, but she’s definitely a member of their ka-tet all the same.

I am so torn about her ending, so torn. People who have read it, come angst/share your feelings in the comments?

I was so invested in the story in fact, I deliberately stopped at the end of it, and had a few hours break between that and picking back up with the ‘current’ four.


...Then I picked it up and kept reading. Yay current characters! So pleased to see you all again! I adored the bit where they see the red shoes all lined up on the road, and Jake tentatively taps their heels together, and Eddie and Susannah look around, fully expecting something to happen, while Roland looks on confused. <3 <3

Then after thinking King had in fact written a 'within acceptable losses' death, and come to terms with it, and feeling like I'd/he'd damn well dodged a bullet, he pulls the MOST FRIDGY FRIDGE TO EVER FRIDGE what the HELL, and leaves me blindsided and furious and not even making me feel for Roland, just really pissed at King.

So I opened the sample pages of...

What I'm reading now: Wolves of the Calla with a lot of built up WTF, and the sample pages in the back of my book (basically up to Andy announcing the first coming of the wolves. sub-chapter 1 -- do we have a proper word for those numbered sections? -- of the prologue) Did Not Help. At All. It rang as misogynistic POV character we were supposed to follow along with, plus the misogyny itself, plus apparent ableism and emotional/physical abuse and Welp. I was not in a good mood after that, and fully prepared to drop the lot.

...then I went onto Amazon and read the much longer sample provided and went 'Oh. Oh, wow. Huh. That's...Yeah, okay, hooked back in again." I've bought the ebook, and have just remembered I should go charge my tablet more. I swear, I have never had a book series drag me around quite like this.
*whiplashed, still here*


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