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The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger Mass Market Paperback – October 25, 2016
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Thirty-three years, a horrific and life-altering accident, and thousands of desperately rabid fans in the making, Stephen King's quest to complete his magnum opus rivals the quest of Roland and his band of gunslingers who inhabit the Dark Tower series. Loyal DT fans and new readers alike will appreciate this revised edition of The Gunslinger, which breathes new life into Roland of Gilead, and offers readers a "clearer start and slightly easier entry into Roland's world."
King writes both a new introduction and foreword to this revised edition, and the ever-patient, ever-loyal "constant reader" is rewarded with secrets to the series's inception. That a "magic" ream of green paper and a Robert Browning poem, came together to reveal to King his "ka" is no real surprise (this is King after all), but who would have thought that the squinty-eyed trio of Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Eli Wallach would set the author on his true path to the Tower? While King credits Tolkien for inspiring the "quest and magic" that pervades the series, it was Sergio Leone's The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly that helped create the epic proportions and "almost absurdly majestic western backdrop" of Roland's world.
To King, The Gunslinger demanded revision because once the series was complete it became obvious that "the beginning was out of sync with the ending." While the revision adds only 35 pages, Dark Tower purists will notice the changes to Allie's fate and Roland's interaction with Cort, Jake, and the Man in Black--all stellar scenes that will reignite the hunger for the rest of the series. Newcomers will appreciate the details and insight into Roland's life. The revised Roland of Gilead (nee Deschain) is embodied with more humanity--he loves, he pities, he regrets. What DT fans might miss is the same ambiguity and mystery of the original that gave the original its pulpy underground feel (back when King himself awaited word from Roland's world). --Daphne Durham --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
From Library Journal
King's (Pet Sematary, Audio Reviews, LJ 11/1/98) fantastical and allegorical "Dark Tower" series commenced in 1982 with the publication of The Gunslinger. Subsequent volumes have appeared about every five years thereafter. The Gunslinger introduces protagonist Roland as he pursues the Man in Black through bleak and tired landscapes in a world that has "moved on." Roland believes that the Man in Black knows and can be made to reveal the secrets of the Dark Tower, which is the ultimate goal of Roland's quest. The Waste Lands sees Roland and his fellow travelers continuing the quest for the Dark Tower. They journey through imaginative landscapes, over astounding obstacles, and meet with and confront a unique and fully drawn cast of characters, both human and nonhuman. Reader Frank Muller gives voice to the characters with a thoroughly engaging precision, accuracy, and great humanity and with an edge that drives the story onward and seems to amplify King's skill as an author. Highly recommended for all fiction collections.?Kristen L. Smith, Loras Coll. Lib., Dubuque, IA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top customer reviews
This might be a useful introduction to an epic series, but the story does not stand in its own.
In other ways - the ways that matter - this novel is still part of the sweeping saga that began with The Gunslinger. There is a sense that this book is *bigger* than itself, somehow. Roland and Eddie, Susannah and Jake, Oy and Lud and the Tick Tock Man - all of it will remain in your heart long after your eyes have glided over the last word on the last page of the book. This installment of the series is where key elements of Roland's world begin to come into focus. It is a lynchpin of sorts, connecting the dreamy darkness of the first novel with the rollicking adventure of the second.
The cliffhanger is more forgivable now than it was when I first read the book...and then had to wait 5 or 6 years to find out what happened. But it is still hard to end the book in the midst of the action. Be sure to have Wizard and Glass ready to go as soon as you finish Waste Lands.
The dangers this tiny group of unlikely companions faced as they moved through the Waste Lands were such exciting and scary adventures that left my heart pounding as my love for these characters just grew even stronger. This book has everything...action, danger, magic, compelling characters... that makes epic fantasy such a unique literary experience. King's imagination is at its finest with this series.