"The town of Candleton was a poisoned and irradiated ruin, but not dead; after all of the centuries, it still twitched with tenebrous life--trundling beetles the size of turtles, birds that looked like small, misshapen dragonlets, a few stumbling robots that passed in and out of the rotten buildings like stainless steel zombies, their joints squalling, their nuclear eyes flickering. "
- Stephen King, from Wizard and Glass
SK ends The Wastelands with a cliffhanger, with our heros about to confront Blane the Mono, and so of course you have to read what'll happen, even if - like me - you're reading it for the second time. That's what SK does to you. He makes you read past your bedtime, caught up in the world he creates, desperate to find out what happens. I'm not sure I'll read the flashback portion of Wizard and Glass - a huge percentage of the book is a retelling of Roland's first adventure - but I'll read about Blane and the last formative story of the ka-tet, the last step of the first part of the Dark Tower series. After this book, the last three books conclude the saga in a feverish rush (if you can describe over 1500 pages of text in that way). Damned good stuff - had forgotten how fun it was!