My biggest problem(s) with the book can be summed up simply enough with the statement that I think Stephen King needs an editor. I understand that he is a famous, award winning author and I am an English major with a blog. But I think even die hard King fans agree with me (especially after the release of 11/22/63).
My second biggest problem – my problem with so many books – is basically “Uhg, why do you hate the ladies?!?!” There are SO FEW OF THEM. And they are all tropes. Susannah has all the tropes. Smurfette? Yep. Mystical pregnancy? Yep. Evil demon seductress? Yep, only slightly qualified by the fact that this is technically her sharing her body and brain with a demon. But seriously, that demon’s only purpose in life up to mystical pregnancy was to seduce roadside dunces to death. (Side note: those are all links to YouTube videos of Anita Sarkeesian being a smart, well-spoken feminist. At which she is amazing.) Susannah is also the token POC and on several occasions mistaken for their servant/wench. It is rough to be Susannah in these books.
I also hate Eddie Dean. Hate is a strong word to use about a fictional character but in this case it is appropriate. He starts off an annoying junkie and through thousands of pages of character growth turns into an annoying human. Yes, he does stop doing cocaine and heroine which is, perhaps, worthy of a back pat. But certainly he doesn’t stop talking about them. Also, it’s hard to do drugs in a world where you don’t know anyone and there don’t seem to be any drugs lying around. So he probably didn’t even really earn that back pat. And he’s constantly quoting his even more annoying, drug addled, dead brother – who, incidentally, is the giver of some of the worst advice I’ve ever heard (here’s a hint: the solution to everything is to get high, even if the problem is being too high and owing drug dealers more money than you have) – and telling terrible jokes and then laughing at them. Alone. But somehow he is chosen to be in charge of their group in the event Roland’s absence. Susannah is both older and the most responsible one of them. Even Jake, a preteen, would do a better job.
WHY COULDN’T IT HAVE BEEN POST APOCALYPTIC?! It would have been so much better that way!
Something that bothered me throughout the last few books but is perhaps not a legitimate criticism of their content -19 and 99 are not, in fact, the same number which everyone seems to be utterly confused about.