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The Dark Tower Boxed Set (Books 1-4) Mass Market Paperback – Box set, October 7, 2003

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Editorial Reviews


“Gripping...compelling...King mesmerizes the reader.” —Chicago Sun-Times“An impressive work of mythic magnitude. May turn out to be Stephen King’s greatest literary achievement.” —Atlanta Journal-Constitution

About the Author

Stephen King, the world's bestselling novelist, was educated at the University of Maine at Orono. He lives with his wife, the novelist Tabitha King, and their children in Bangor, Maine.

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Product Details

  • Series: Dark Tower
  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: Signet; Box Rep edition (October 7, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451211243
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451211248
  • Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 5.4 x 7.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (286 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,224 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. His recent work includes Doctor Sleep and Under the Dome, now a major TV miniseries on CBS. His novel 11/22/63 was named a top ten book of 2011 by The New York Times Book Review and won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller as well as the Best Hardcover Book Award from the International Thriller Writers Association. He is the recipient of the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. He lives in Bangor, Maine, with his wife, novelist Tabitha King.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

99 of 110 people found the following review helpful By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 22, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
With two recent Dark Tower releases and a forthcoming grand finale, fans of Stephen King's dark fantasy series may want to brush up on the first four volumes of the series. "The Gunslinger," "the Drawing of the Three," "The Waste Lands" and "Wizard's Glass" all have their individual flaws, but the overall effect is excellent.

"The Gunslinger" introduces us to Roland Deschain of Gilead, the last gunslinger of a long-dead land. The hardened cowboy/knight wanders through a wasted world, tracking a "man in black" who can help him find (cue ominous music) the Dark Tower. Along the way he finds Jake, a young boy who was killed in a car accident in our world. But in the name of his quest, Roland may be called on to sacrifice what he loves...

"The Drawing of the Three" kicks off mere hours after "Gunslinger" ends. Roland is sick, and being pursued by carnivorous "lobstrosities." But then he ends up transporting his mind into our world -- specifically, into the minds of junkie smuggler Eddie Dean, and legless civil rights activist Odetta Holmes (and her evil alter ego, Detta). Roland "draws" these two into his own world, but Eddie's withdrawal and Detta's malevolence might kill his quest before it even starts.

"The Waste Lands" begins with Roland tutoring Susannah (formerly Odetta/Detta) and Eddie in how to be gunslingers. But while the newlyweds are rapidly getting the hang of it, Roland is not doing well. Because of a paradox he created when he saved the boy Jake, his mind is starting to deteriorate. In Manhattan, Jake is suffering from the same thing. To save them both from madness, the gang draws Jake away from our world.
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50 of 55 people found the following review helpful By A. Galvan on February 28, 2012
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
It should be noted that this box set contains the first four books of the Dark Tower series in mass market paperback. The trade paperback editions contain about 10 or so full page illustrations and a different artist for each book save the first and last book those two books have illustrations by Michael Whelan which are excellent. The mass market editions do not contain any illustrations. I would say go for the trade paperback editions. If you don't care for the illustrations then you do save money with this box set although you can find good deals on the trade paperbacks in used condition.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By E.R. on October 9, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Roland is the last living member of a knightly order known as gunslingers. The world he lives in is quite different from our own, yet it bears striking similarities to it. Politically organized along the lines of a feudal society, it shares technological and social characteristics with the American Old West, as well as bearing magical powers and the relics of a highly advanced, but long vanished, society. Roland's quest is to find the Dark Tower, a fabled building said to either be, or be located at, the nexus of all universes. Roland's world is said to have "moved on," and indeed it appears to be coming apart at the seams -- mighty nations are being torn apart by war, entire cities and regions vanish from the face of the earth without a trace, time does not flow in an orderly fashion; even the sun sometimes rises in the north and sets in the east. As the series opens, Roland's motives, goals, and even his age are unclear, though later installments shed light on these mysteries.

This series was mostly inspired by the epic poem "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came" by Robert Browning, the full text of which was included in an appendix to the final volume. In the preface to the revised 2003 edition of The Gunslinger, King also identifies The Lord of the Rings, the Arthurian Legend, and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly as inspirations. He identifies Clint Eastwood's "Man with No Name" character as one of the major inspirations for Roland. King's style of location names in the series, such as Mid-World, and his development of a unique language abstract to our own, are also influenced by J. R. R. Tolkien's work.

The Dark Tower is often described in the novels as a real structure, and also as a metaphor.
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36 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Brian J. Griffin on March 18, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I only recently decided to enter the world of Stephen King's Dark Tower. This boxed set provided me with an excellent chance to do so.

The Dark Tower series is King's ultimate opus. It's a saga that entertains and constantly evolves with each book. In my opinion the series is a must read.

The set itself is a great introduction to the Dark Tower world. The first book is newly revised and exapanded. All these revisions make sense in the larger context of the series. All four of these books contain new introductions by Stephen King himself. Here he does a great job on introducing us to this wonderfully imaginative saga.

At a very affordable price, this box set is a must have. Each book has its own unique voice, and these four set up a strong foundation for the seven part saga. The overall presentation of the books is done well. A great pruchase for those looking to delve into the Dark Tower universe.
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The Dark Tower Boxed Set (Books 1-4)
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