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The Dark Tower, Books 1-3: The Gunslinger, The Drawing of the Three, and The Waste Lands
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The Dark Tower, Books 1-3: The Gunslinger, The Drawing of the Three, and The Waste Lands

4.43 of 5 stars 4.43  ·  rating details  ·  5,123 ratings  ·  81 reviews
Titles include The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger, The Dark Tower II: The Drawing of the Three and The Dark Tower III: The Waste Lands.
Paperback, 1008 pages
Published November 1st 1997 by Plume (first published October 1st 1991)
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I thought this was a very well written, science fiction series. Although the first book was a BORE and I almost didn't continue reading, I am really glad my brother convinced me otherwise. The rest of the series is full of complexity, and very exciting reading. Not sure what I think of the ending. I would recommend the series to others - but would warn them first of how boring the first book is - just skim it to get to the "good books!"
Absolutely the best series I've ever read.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Okay, I read each of the Dark Tower books as they came out, but couldn't write separate reviews for each, because really, they're just one long book.

Nothing made me sadder than when I finished the last book. I love Roland. I love Eddie and Susannah. I love the terrifying, dusty, romantic land of End World.

I am not ashamed to admit that when each new book came out, I felt compelled to read each of the previous books over again in order, so that each was crisp and still in my mind clearly when I...more
I just can't say enough good things about this work. The plot, the characters, the writing (yes - Stephen King's writing) all kept me enthralled. I was so happy when the final book came out. I'm currently "rereading" the series (via audiobook) and it's just as good the second time around. When a seven-tome series is worth rereading, that's saying something.
Donna Medcalf
Book 1 is a bit of a struggle but after that you're hooked! Book 7 just makes you want to read every one of them again!!
These first three books of the dark tower series made me believe that Stephen King is actually a really good writer.

Book four destroyed that impression.

The later books i never touched.

i've read the four books in german translation, and i now, while writing this review, recognized that the fourth book had a different translator...
maybe i should re-read them, this time in english, because the first three ones were really great books...

had been favorites for a long time...

Teresa Weaver
The first three books of Stephen King's "The Dark Tower" are worth reading if only to see a clear picture how how King's writing styles have changed over the course of the decades.

The scene is the end of the world---the philosophy behind it is that as the world ends, time will stop moving linearly and begin to get jumbled up---like a train crashing into a wall and the cars stacking up around each other. People stop to age--distances mean nothing because it could take you 10 years or two seconds...more
I'm picking this option to save time in reviewing all three, because I believe the power comes from reading the three together more so than individually. The gunslinger series is one that my mind comes to over and over. Roland is a powerful character in my mind, no doubt because he's very much so a part of Kings. The first book is one of King's first, and it shows. However, in typical King fashion, it's the perfect character development for you to understand Roland as you progress to The Drawing...more
Ed G
Jul 09, 2007 Ed G rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Stephen King fans
Dark, twisted, Stephen King-esque. But never ending. He's up to book 7 or 8 at this point and I'm going to need to re-read these before I can get through the whole series.

The series follows the story of Roland, a sort of latter day six-shooter knight from an alternate world where sorcery and demons run side by side with science.

Roland seeks a man in black through the first book, makes some friends in the second book, they travel afar in the third, they continue the journey in the fourth (while...more
Michelle White
Loved this one even more than the first in the series. Loved the twists and turns and surprises and complexity of the story, the journey and the characters.
The Wastelands was good, but it took a minute to get going. Stephen King has a knack for detail that borders on the obsessive. Once it got going though, it was one heck of a story, as always. This book felt like a transitional piece. Considering it's part of a longer work, I don't doubt that it probably is. It did leave me wanting to read #4 which I will do in a little while. Like every book I've read so far in this series, I have to put a little distance between readings. I like the way these b...more
Mrs. TB
I liked the first three books so much more than the last four. In fact, if I never read the last four again, I wouldn't feel like I was missing out.

These books are about a man called The Gunslinger who is trying to save his world, which is dying. In "Drawing of the Three", he must pull in three people from OUR world who will help him in some way - they know nothing about this other world, and are unlikely heros - for example, a druggie and a paralyzed woman with multiple personalities - not exac...more
Feb 01, 2014 Edward added it
completely love the gunslinger and the man in black good series. possibly my favorite of all time considering.
If you like westerns or science fiction or drama, or action, or romance,or better yet, a combination of these genres-this is the series for you. But be prepared to experience much, much more than that! This is one of the most engrossing series I've ever read. It sucks you and and doesn't spit you out until you've read that last page and "WOW!". Stephen King has provided an ending to beat all endings. You're either going to love it or hate it. I absolutely, positively LOVED it. I sat in satisfied...more
Joe Gallagher
Loosely threaded yarn from the great Stephen King. In my mind, you have to be a Stephen King fan to enjoy this series. You will enjoy the refrences to some of his other works, i.e. The Stand & Christine. I would probably give it more than 3 stars if I didn't like the basic premise that there is some futuristic world where gun slingers are like the Knight Errants of the world and there is a code, etc., etc. It just seemed a little hokey. Anyway, it has many twists and turns and some very inte...more
I've never liked Stephen King as much as I think I should. He's obviously a master storyteller, but every time I read one of his novels I can't get past the constant awareness of him - as the author - controlling the story. (This critique does not apply to his short stories...)

... nor does it apply to the original versions of the first three Dark Tower novels! The Gunslinger was the first King novel I ever read in which I couldn't find the author in the story. It felt like the story wrote itself...more
I really liked these books, especially The Drawing of the Three. I read the first one last Christmas, then wasn't really moved to pick up the second one until this past June, when I took it on vacation with me. I am glad I did, because after devouring the third one, now I am reading the fourth one, and really enjoying it. If you like long sagas, (I do!) then I highly recommend this series. Even if you aren't completely enthralled by The Gunslinger, it is definitely worth reading to the end to ge...more
Easily my favorite books by the King.
Aug 28, 2008 Mom rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Every lover of fiction.
The first three books in this series were written when Stephen King was young. The last three were written after his accident that nearly killed him. The first three are pure fun fiction. The second three are much more thought provoking. As it turns out the series would not have been as impactful if all six had been written at the same time. This is a huge investment in time, but well woeth the effort
I'm not a huge fan of King's horror stories, but these books are different - they run more along the lines of sci-fi with some romantic gunslinging thrown in. They are well done and tell a great story. The fourth book goes off on a major tangent, and the three books after that get stranger and stranger (and not very in tune with the rest of the series), but books 1-3 are very good indeed.
The original set that drew me into Stephen King's Dark Tower saga. Vivid descriptions of King's imaginative world that entranced me as a 10 yr old. And also gave me the equally graphic mental images as I pictured the carnivorous lobsters nipping toes and fingers off of the gunslinger's cocaine-addled body laying on the beach.
Jun 15, 2009 Carie rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: alone
I love the books that Stephen King wrote under the pseudonym of Richard Bachman. His tendency toward gratuitous horror has not been quelled in this series, and I could do without some of his very graphic descriptions of folks losing limbs and such, but the story is so well done. I'm going on to the 4th book this morning.
Braden Canfield
I had to read all of these for the sake of my man, Stephen King. The best by far in this series is "Wizard and Glass"- the middle of the seven and the one that realizes the vision of the story most vividly. The first three were compelling. The last three were increasingly terrible. It was a struggle to finish.
The dark tower series is my favorite books from stephen king. He incorporates a lot of his past books as well as well loved classic stories into these books. If you are a fan of the tv show Lost you will love these books and
may understand the story line for both a little more since they are so similar.
King's very own Fellowship of the Ring trilogy is just as expansive. What a fresh take on the fantasy/science fiction genre. I sped through the first 6 books, always wanting to know what happens but I took my time with the last book, wanting to savor my time with the characters.
These books are amazing. The gunslinger was a little hard for me to get into and understand at first, but the more I read the more I got captured by this story and the characters. I think this series is one of the best things I've read by this author.
I don't normally enjoy reading King. But, the universe that he created here is totally engaging. The first book is almost like a tone poem and is my favorite of the series (It is most folks least favorite) This MUST become a Hollywood franchse.
Epic series. Started reading this in middle school and Stephen King just finally finished it. Very imaginitive with a fantasy twist - which is not something I'm usually into. You have to read it to understand.
Melissa Karam
I guess my other fast paced supernatural reads have spoiled me for this book... The story just doesn't move fast enough for me. I'll continue to read the series just to finish it but not anytime soon..
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Stephen Edwin King was born the second son of Donald and Nellie Ruth Pillsbury King. After his father left them when Stephen was two, he and his older brother, David, were raised by his mother. Parts of his childhood were spent in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where his father's family was at the time, and in Stratford, Connecticut. When Stephen was eleven, his mother brought her children back to Durham, M...more
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