I'd heard a lot of good things about this book, but, not being a King fan, never bothered to give it a try. However, I came across a couple of issues of the recent Marvel comics series and was instantly intrigued, so I decided to skip the rest of comics and go straight to the "uncut and unabridged" prose version. It started out awesome. King established and laid out his characters with a detail that's never seen in today's literature. The story felt somewhat like The Walking Dead meets The Lord Of The Rings - how could you NOT love that? The Conspiracy, The Plague, The Nightmare Fuel, The Big Bad, I enjoyed all of it. Nick Andros was my favourite. And then the endless God-praising fatalistic bullshit started. Follow God. Don't Question God. Trust In God. God's Plan. The Will Of God. The Hand Of God. (at least LOTR was set in a magical world...here, there isn't even any "Destiny" veil: it's basically, "Mother Abagail says God wants you to do that so go do this." Kind of a dumb way to move the plot forward - especially considering the ending). Then, Nick being my favourite character, of course King went and Dropped A Bridge On Him. I see on the main page that this was caused by Chandlers Law and I'm not surprised. All right, did we at least get an Ultimate Showdown Of Ultimate Destiny? Nope. The bad guy was Hoist By His Own Petard and got blown up by a nuke (actually, he wasn't, so we didn't even get that.) Not only did the entire thing come off as a Shaggy Dog Story, IMO the Pinball Protagonist trope stands - they didn't do a damn thing. All in all, the book's first half was awesomely entertaining, then it middled to a very slow pace during the meet-up with Mother Abagail and the establishment of the BFZ, and then rolled and tumbled headfirst into a very hurried, Because Destiny Says So ending that didn't make much sense and left a bad aftertaste behind.
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