Skip to main content

On (Still) Reading . . . The Dark Tower

The year has past its halfway mark and I'm still trying to climb up the Dark Tower with Roland and his ka-tet. I wasn't planning spending all this time dissecting Mid-World, thankee-sai, and Blaine the Mono, but that's how it's gone.

You could ask why would I bother with such a difficult read. Well, since I'm a fan of easter eggs in books, TV shows, and movies, this series is ripe with them. And I still agree that if you read this mash-up of King Arthur, Lord of the Rings, and the Man With No Name trilogy, you have a much better understanding of Stephen King's other work.

While I was in Florida, I read two non-King books in four days. Those who are friends with me on GoodReads know that is warp speed for me, but I think my patience with the Dark Tower series helped me immensely. The pacing of the series is slow, but after I read The Stand, I'm used to that.

A few weeks ago, I decided to read a short story from Full Dark, No Stars in one morning. There were no moments of todash, specialplates, or rose sightings. It's not like I expected those, but reading through and along helped me zip through this short story in an hour or so.

This all made me think of challenges we're willing to take on end up really helping us down the line. Helping us out in ways we never saw coming.

Believe me, if I thought the Dark Tower series was a bunch of pretentious, drug-fueled fantasies tying every loose end together, I would have given up in The Wastelands. But there was enough to hook me in and want to read to the very end. Even though I've heard plenty of whiners about how the story concludes. (Yes, the Internet is still perfect if you want to viciously rip on something but backpedal about it in person.)

All I can say is, the journey's still going and I'm not giving up. I passed the give-up point long ago any way.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Catherine Wheel

Originally posted: Tuesday, August 29th, 2006 Despite managing to release five proper albums, Catherine Wheel was one of those bands that always seemed to slip past the mainstream rock crowd. Yes, they got some nice airplay in their day, but people seem to have forgotten about them. You may hear “Black Metallic” or “Waydown” on a “classic alternative” show on Sirius or XM or maybe even on terrestrial radio, but that’s about it. For me, they were one of most consistent rock bands of the ’90s, meandering through shoegazer, hard rock, space rock and pop rock, all while eluding mainstream pigeonholing. Led by the smooth, warm pipes of vocalist/guitarist Rob Dickinson (cousin of Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson), Catherine Wheel featured Brian Futter on lead guitar, Dave Hawes on bass and Neil Sims on drums. They weren’t a pretty-boy guitar band, but they weren’t a scuzzy bunch of ragamuffins either. Though the band hailed from England, Catherine Wheel found itself more welcome on American air

I ain't got no crystal ball

I've never been a big fan of Sublime's reggae-punk-ska, but I feel bad for their hardcore fans. Billboard reports that a four-disc box set featuring previously released and unreleased material is on the way. How is this a bad thing? Well, the number of posthumous vault-raiding collections greatly outnumber the band's proper releases. That usually isn't a problem, but the quality of them is very suspect. When they were together, the band recorded three proper albums, Robbin' the Hood , 40 Oz. to Freedom and Sublime . Sublime would be the band's breakthrough record with the mainstream, but that success was very bittersweet. Shortly before its release, frontman/guitarist/songwriter Bradley Nowell died of a heroin overdose. In the following years, the effects of apparently a bad record deal have yielded compilation after compilation. Here's the rundown so far: Second Hand Smoke (1997) Stand By Your Van -- Sublime Live in Concert (1998) Sublime Acoustic: Br

Best of 2021

  Last year, my attention span was not wide enough to listen to a lot of LPs from start to finish. Too much went on in 2020 to focus on 10-15 albums, so I went with only a couple to spotlight. Well, 2021 was a little better, as I have a list of top four records, and a lot of individual tracks.  (I made a lengthy Spotify playlist ) So, without further ado, here’s my list of favorites of the year: Albums Deafheaven, Infinite Granite (listen) Hands down, my favorite album of the year. I was not sure where Deafheaven would go after another record that brought My Bloody Valentine and death metal fans together, but they beautifully rebooted their sound on Infinite Granite. The divisive goblin vocals are vastly pared-down here, as are the blast beats. Sounding more inspired by Slowdive, the band has discovered a new sonic palette that I hope they explore more of in the future. It’s a welcome revelation. I still love their older material, but this has renewed my love of what these guys do.  J