- Series: Dark Tower (Book 1)
- Paperback: 272 pages
- Publisher: NAL; Revised edition (June 24, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0452284694
- ISBN-13: 978-0452284692
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 16,541 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #260,995 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Gunslinger (Revised Edition): The Dark Tower I Paperback – June 24, 2003
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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 an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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 an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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As the story unwinds after the climactic events, my emotions surprised me. I've cried while reading books before, but not while reading the words of a bureaucratic proclamation!
The overarching theme of the series, first shown early in "Mr. Mercedes," is suicide, both the tragedy of it and some people's fascination with it.
In this thriller, Det. Ret. (Detective, Retired) K. William Hodges frequently has suicide on his mind. His life doesn't seem to have much purposes since his retirement, he doesn't often see his old friends, and is largely estranged from his daughter. On top of that, several cases, still open when he left the police force, still weigh on him, especially the case of a man who plowed a Mercedes into a job fair crowd, killing eight and wounding many more.
Then, he receives a letter in the mail from the Mercedes Killer, bragging about the mass murder and taunting him. What ensues is as much a psychological battle as a mystery as Hodges pursues the killer, often breaking the law to do so.
This story is filled with well-rounded characters, complex motivations, and action. It's a powerful start to a fantastic trilogy.
Oh, and I also discovered after finishing the trilogy that there is a "Mr. Mercedes" television series I had no idea existed. With the first season out, I need to figure out where to see it, so I can binge watch it as soon as possible. The pictures of the cast even look close to how I imagined the characters.