Book Review: The Dark Tower VI: Song of Susannah by Stephen King

Book 6 is done and we’re only one book out. This has been a while ride, and I’m happy to say that we’re seeing more action, more risk, more payoff, more everything. After the disappointment of book 4, book 5 was a welcome change and thankfully this trend has carried on in book 6.

As you can probably tell from the title, this is very much a book about Susannah. It picks up from where we left off in book 5, after the battle against the wolves, as Susannah leaves the Calla and heads to New York through one of the same doors Susannah and Eddie came through in book 2. (Not the actual same doors, on the beach, but you get it. Same type of door.)

There’s some stuff happening to Susannah, which I’d love to talk about but I don’t want to give anything away. Let’s just say that Susannah isn’t necessarily who we think she is (anymore), and that things are going to change for her, a lot. Eddie, Roland, and Jake, (with the help of Father Callahan) set after her into our world. They get separated, Eddie and Roland landing in Maine, and Jake, Callahan and Oy landing in New York. At this point, Susannah’s already been there, trying to do what she has set out to do.

This book is much shorter and though I feel it’s more fast paced (which if you’ve paid attention to me, you know I love), I also feel the pace is characteristically ‘King’. Slow and deliberate, taking it’s sweet time to unravel everything. Though I loved this book, I’m getting a bit sick of it. There’s so many things that take so incredibly long, and often they don’t seem to serve a purpose.

My absolute favorite part of this book, is that when Roland and Eddie land in Maine, they are of course able to meet the people who live there. They eventually make their way to certain writer’s house; Stephen King’s house. Seeing King write himself as a character was very cool. Weird, but cool. It’s the kind of thing I feel only King can pull off and it was exciting delving into his own mind, to see how he sees himself. Because of this, the ending of the book (after the ending of Roland’s story), included a few notes by Stephen King. At first I thought it was from the author Stephen King, but I realized after a while it was from the character Stephen King, within the Dark Tower universe. How do I know this? Because he died by the end.

At this point I’m very excited to get on with book 7. Looking back, at all we’ve been through with Roland, Eddie, Jake, Susannah, Oy, and everyone else who’s come along, I’m anxious to see how it will end. The ending of book 6 left us right in the middle of it, and I’m guessing that’s where it’s going to pick back up. And there’s so many things left to answer. I find myself wondering if all of our friends will be with us at the end of it.

After the next book, I’ll of course review that one as well, but I want to do a bigger overview on The Dark Tower. By that I don’t mean going into detail about the plot, because that’s what reading the books is for, but I want to… conclude my travels through this world of King’s mind. Tell you what I’ve learned, what I’ve thought about, how I feel about this story.

Looking forward to it. Now onto book 7.

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