01 July 2012

The Wind Through the Keyhole by Stephen King

It's been a while, and while I've been reading quite a bit, it has mostly been things I either didn't feel up to reviewing or had already read so many times as to make it kind of hard to review.  Foremost was the time I took to re-read all seven Harry Potter books when I got the eBook versions from Pottermore...which is also quite fun.

I did, however, finally finish Stephen King's The Wind Through the Keyhole, an interquel of sorts set in the world of The Dark Tower, taking place between the fourth and fifth books.  Though it took me a while to get back into a Mid-World frame of mind, once I got there I remembered why I loved The Dark Tower so much.

Wind is a tale-within-a-tale-within-a tale: a brief story of Roland and his ka-tet, on the way to the Calla, who have to hole up for a while to wait out a storm; and the story Roland tells them, of a time when he and Jamie deCurry went in hunt of a skin-man (shapeshifter); and the tale that the younger Roland of the story tells to a little boy whose path he crosses, the titular The Wind Through the Keyhole - which, it transpires, was a tale Roland's mother told him in his long-forgotten youth.

I must admit that, at first, I found reading the novel kind of hard - after all, the Tower series had been finished, I'd made my way through it and gotten my reward, heartbreaking though the ending was.  To delve back into that world, and at a mid-point as well, seemed unnecessary and in a way, cruel.  As I got further in, though, and let down my guard, it was, strangely, much easier to place myself back in that past, as the book so clearly intends you to do, to imagine it taking place between Wizard and Glass and Wolves of the Calla.

As I read, I could not help but find myself reflecting that the entire novel seemed as much a narrative as a meditation on narrative - stories within stories, and the power that stories hold over us, and over the world, are at the heart of the novel.  Even within the three main tales, characters within those tales tell stories of their own, or else recall them, or wonder if they are true.

What was most interesting to me, though, came at the very end of the story, where Roland receives a letter.  Though not a story in and of itself, the letter's impact was quite profound, and really turned the whole story on its head, and made me rethink what much of the book might have been about.

The Wind Through the Keyhole ended up being a fantastic read.  I almost feel guilty that it took me so long to get back into it.  But I'm glad I did.

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Books: Finished The Wind Through the Keyhole.  Going to read A Game of Thrones next.

Bottles: Joined a wine club, and experiencing many different budget bottles, but none have stood out to me yet.

Guitar: Working on lots of stuff right now, plus reviewing.  "On the Turning Away" is the main project right now.

Writing: Finished my third draft of Into the Shining Sun toward the end of May, and letting it rest a little.  Had an idea for a sort of comedic murder mystery that might be fun to write next.