I'm past the halfway mark of the seventh and final volume. My pace was slowed as I was home sick for a couple of days but had left the book at work. Them's the breaks.
Anyway, King is taking pains to make sure that this is the final volume. He's killed off two main characters in the last 100 pages. One can never be sure in Stephen King's world if a character is going to stay dead or not, but these deaths seem definitive.
King has also written himself back into the story, making his near-fatal traffic accident in 1999 a major turning point in the story. This is making me wonder how much of The Dark Tower series he worked out in advance. He mentions in earlier volumes pre-accident that he figures the series will run to six or seven volumes when completed. And he begins referencing "19" from the very first page of the book. Yet post-accident, he (the character, not the author) mentions that he had an outline, one of the few times he's done one, but lost it. And "19" ties in with the date of his accident. So it's all hard to know what's what.
The first part of the book ties up some loose ends from book five, and frankly, I was really uninterested in this part. Or it maybe I was just getting sick. Anyway, now that Roland and Jake have returned to help Stephen King, the book has picked up.
Only 412 pages to go!