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Song of Susannah (Dark Tower) by Stephen King
Cover Artist: Darrel Anderson
Review by John Berlyne
Hodder & Stoughton Ltd Hardcover  ISBN/ITEM#: 0340827181
Date: 08 June 2004 List Price £20.00 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Article /

And so we round the final corner of this marathon and enter the final straight. The race has been a challenging one - long and gruelling, often times over uneven ground, sometimes pushing uphill, sometimes flying with seemingly unstoppable momentum but never lacking in excitement. In Song of Susannah, King disabuses both the reader and his characters of the notion that they may be the main participants in the experience that is The Dark Tower -- this is and has always been about King himself. As his uberstory (a term he himself uses to describe his epic) cranks up to its highly anticipated climax, the author shows yet again that he towers above the competition, that he truly is The King.

From official release/information:

Amazon.co.uk Review: Song of Susannah continues directly from the almost literally cliff-hanging epilogue to Wolves of the Calla. As ever with such series, this is not the place to begin and new readers are strongly advised to start with volume one, The Gunslinger.

Meanwhile the penultimate instalment in the Dark Tower septet follows three interlocked storylines. Roland and Eddie in New England, where they undergo the firestorm of the book's only major action set-piece, Jake and Father Callahan hot in pursuit of Susannah in New York, and Susannah herself, together with her alter ego Mia, struggling with probably the strangest pregnancy in all fiction. Her travails certainly make the New York horrors of Ira Levin's Rosemary's Baby seem almost mundane. The novel is not complete in itself, but leads to a duel climax-cliffhanger leading directly into the final volume, The Dark Tower.

While the journey itself is compelling and the finale riveting, it is Stephen King's imaginative boldness which make this episode so remarkable. Stories about storytelling have become increasingly common in modern fiction, with books within books and fictional authors being central to such metafictions as Christopher Priest's The Affirmation and Jonathan Carroll's The Land of Laughs. King though takes the process further, writing himself into the saga, playing ingenious games with what the public knows of his life, even to his famous near fatal accident in 1999, and in a breathtaking achievement weaving the 34 year long writing of this series of books into its own fabric. The shocking sting in the final pages mean all bets are off for the epic final volume.--Gary Dalkin

(Source: Hodder & Stoughton Ltd)

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