I received the first 5 books of this series from a friend of mine a long while back and they just stood there on my bookshelf for a couple of years until I decided to give them a try. At that time, I have never read Stephen King books before so I didn’t know what to expect. From various reviews of this series, one mentioned that it can be considered a crossover between fantasy, sci-fi and western genres. I agree.
The series is 7 books in total or 8 if you count the one published in 2012 and goes between book 4 and 5 (I didn’t read that one as I have already been past book 5 at the time). I divided this review into 3 parts where I will briefly talk about each book. This part will be about book 1 and 2. I won’t be adding any spoilers but if I do I will tell you beforehand, though keep in mind that each book after the first one will talk about some details from the previous ones.
When I finally started reading “The Gunslinger” I stopped half way through. I just couldn’t continue, it was a slow read and didn’t catch my attention much. Most of the reviews say that the first book isn’t as good as the rest but it gets a lot better so I decided to give it another try about a year later (and I already had those 5 books that I wanted to read). This time I managed to finish it. In brief, this book gives an introduction to a new world and the Gunslinger’s journey to find the Dark Tower and introduces the main character Roland Deschain (the Gunslinger) and another one of the main characters, a boy named Jake. I was glad I didn’t give up and continued the series. So if you felt the same way about this book I recommend you don’t give up either until after you’ve read book two at least. It does get a lot better.
The second book in the series “The Drawing of the Three”, was one of those books that when I reach a certain part I have to stop and stare for a moment and say “wow, this is awesome!”. After reading the not-so-very-fun first book, this made me very glad I didn’t give up on this series. (If you haven’t read book one stop reading here). Spoilers: The book continues Roland’s journey towards the dark tower in which he comes across three doors that open up to New York city in different timelines. So here he does a little time travelling (this was very intriguing) and from his travels to New York, he meets with the remaining main characters Eddie Dean and Susannah who will join him on his journey to find the Dark Tower.
Being unfamiliar with Stephen King’s writing, these two books were a good introduction to his style. In Part 2 of this review, I will continue with books 3 and 4 of the series.