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Dark Tower: The Gunslinger, Vol. 1 - The Journey Begins Hardcover – January 26, 2011

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Dark Tower: The Gunslinger, Vol. 1 - The Journey Begins + Dark Tower: The Gunslinger - The Little Sisters of Eluria + Dark Tower: The Gunslinger- The Battle of Tull
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Product Details

  • Series: Dark Tower: The Gunslinger (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 136 pages
  • Publisher: Marvel (January 26, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785147098
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785147091
  • Product Dimensions: 2.7 x 4.1 x 0.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #54,399 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The early life of Roland Deschain, last surviving gunslinger hero of Stephen KingÖs series of novels, is once more revisited in this latest graphic novel prequel. Writers Furth and David tell several stories of Roland, ranging from his childhood to the years between the fall of his home of Gilead and his decision to set out on his quest to find the Dark Tower. Loosely connected, the series of flashbacks show RolandÖs early experiences with betrayal and with losing his companions and others he had promised to protect. The stories do not feel strongly connected, save for the fact that they all show early incidents that influenced RolandÖs personality, and so are not much more than a collection of short tales shared around a fire. The art by Phillips and Isanove ably depicts the harshness of RolandÖs world, the strange mix of the familiar and the fantastic to be found in the setting, and the hard lives lived by Roland and the people he meets. And itÖs that glimpse of a beloved fantasy setting which the book has the most to offer. (Jan.)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Peter David is a prolific author whose career, and continued popularity, spans nearly two decades. He has worked in every conceivable media: Television (Babylon 5), film (Trancers), books (Star Trek: New Frontier series), and comic books (Incredible Hulk, X-Factor, Dark Tower). --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Robin Furth was born and raised in Philadelphia and attended the University of Pennsylvania. While enrolled in the Ph.D. program at the University of Maine, she was introduced to Stephen King, who needed a research assistant. She has been working with King for more than five years and is now busy writing story lines and folktales for Marvel's forthcoming Dark Tower comic book series. She divides her time between Maine, the south of England, and Mid-World.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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I like Stephen Kings Dark Tower series.
charlotte buzinski
It's a haunting, bloodspattered story graced by solid artwork, and a lingering sense of tragedy.
E. A Solinas
I found it to be a bit of a mess both plotwise and artwork wise.
Derrick O'Rourke

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 19, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Gilead is in ruins, and all the gunslingers but one are dead. "Dark Tower: The Gunslinger, Vol. 1 - The Journey Begins" launches Roland Deschain on his lifelong quest to find the Dark Tower and avenge his people. It's a haunting, bloodspattered story graced by solid artwork, and a lingering sense of tragedy.

Several years after the last round of comics, Roland stops at the home of a young hermit and his pet raven. Over dinner, Roland recounts what happened after Farson's men killed his people -- he carried the dying Aileen back to Gilead, and finds his onetime home haunted by treacherous ghosts, horrible memories... and oh yeah, grotesque Slow Mutants.

So he sets out on a quest to find John Farson, and ends up wandering into a nearby town with a faithful billy-bumbler. And since he's Roland Deschain, trouble finds him -- he's barely met the EXACT DOPPELGANGER of his dead girlfriend Susan than a bunch of Not-Men kidnap her to turn her into one of them.

The brilliance of "Dark Tower: The Gunslinger, Vol. 1 - The Journey Begins" is that it taps into one of the most primal, terrifying human fears -- that our family, friends and home will all be destroyed, leaving us alive but devastated. And though the entire story is told in flashback by a grizzled, hardened Roland, it doesn't lessen its soul-wrenching power.

And Robin Furth handles the story in a way that is tragic without being melodramatic -- it's splattered with blood, darkness and chaos, and there are some truly tragic scenes where Roland loses even more loved ones in his journey (NOOOOOO! BILLY-BUMBLER!). Roland's farewell speeches to those loved ones are gut-wrenchingly raw, yet very beautiful.

The only major flaw in the story is the introduction of Susan Delgado 2.0.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By firebit on October 20, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I'm an enourmous fan of this series and the graphic novels sealed my love for it even more. I collected and read each book religiously as they started being produced in 2007.

When this latest edition came out, I was very excited to start the main journey, to see in my hands what I saw in my head when I read the books years before, but I was disappointed in everything. The story wasn't concrete, it jumped around and I still couldn't really tell you what happened in there because it was just so unremarkable. The art in any piece of fiction is usually the saving grace for me, being such an artistic individual...but the inconsistency of the style made it about as easy to look at as it would be to swallow a strangely flavored spoonful of some questionable looking, possibly far-expired gelatin....

I fell in love with the dark, sinister style of Jae Lee in the first few books, it surprised me at first but ended up fitting so well with the style of the story. Once it changed I thought it may take getting used to, but I'd be able to accept and love it just the same....I'm still waiting for that to happen, and each time a new book is released, my excitement is dampened a little by the thought of that terrible new art I'll have to look at.

Overall as a series, these books are fantastic and a must-read for any proper Tower Junkie, but this book by itself is a bit of a runt in the litter....here's to hoping the next is an improvement.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Hill TOP 1000 REVIEWER on May 21, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I'm a huge fan of Stephen King, The Dark Tower, and Marvel's adaptation of it, but The Journey Begins is where they almost lost me. This series is flawed for many reasons, earning two stars only because of the illustrations for a couple of scenes from The Gunslinger novel. The title of this overall run actually is The Gunslinger, and following on the heels of The Battle of Jericho, I thought it would be the beginning of King's first Dark Tower novel. It seems to start that way, but then veers way off into newly created stories that really don't make much sense. After buying an old mule in Pricetown, Roland encounters a man named Brown and his bird Zoltan. Much of the first chapter faithfully depicts the opening of King's novel. But then, just when Roland is supposed to start a flashback about his experiences in Tull, he begins telling Brown about the aftermath of Jericho Hill. In the following chapters, Roland drags a dying Aileen around on a travois for awhile before she dies in an attack from Not-Men (?), he's befriended by a billy-bumbler that's way too similar to Oy, he sees and talks to the ghost of Hax (??), and he meets and sleeps with a girl at the Traveler's Rest who just happens to look exactly like Susan...and whose name is Susan.

The only things I like about this book are the opening chapter with Brown and Zoltan, Roland's flashback that illustrates Hax's hanging, and the discovery of slow mutants in the ruins of Gilead. As fans know, the scene with Hax (NOT the ghost scene) is a childhood memory from The Gunslinger novel that hadn't yet been shown in the comics, and the one with the slow mutants is an expansion of something Roland says in one of King's later Dark Tower books. And THAT scene is absolutely horrifying, with the most hideous mutants I've ever seen drawn.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sandra Marmar on May 31, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Dark Tower Series is the best King fantasy series. We waited anxiously as each new book came out. Now it is out in a graphic novel. This is a great find for my grandson in Afganistan. He treasures each book and anxiously awaits the next one. His friends eagerly wait for him to finish reading so they can borrow the next one. A great adventure to read, and great to share with others who live a hurry up and wait lifestyle with their lives on hold and sometimes on the line.
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