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

4.45 of 5 stars 4.45  ·  rating details  ·  6,027 ratings  ·  85 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.
Mass Market Paperback, Boxed set, 0 pages
Published September 1st 1997 by New Amer Library (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.
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
Ea Solinas
Stephen King is best known for being a horror writer, covering everything from evil cars to telekinetic high-schoolers. But his magnum opus was the Dark Tower series, an epic gritty high-fantasy story strongly tinged with horror. "The Dark Tower, Books 1-3: The Gunslinger, The Drawing of the Three, and The Waste Lands" displays the strong first three parts of the series, sweeping you into the Midworld.

"The Gunslinger" introduces us to Roland Deschain of Gilead, the last gunslinger of a long-dead
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.
Edward Davies
This is a pretty slow start to what becomes an incredibly engrossing series of novels from the Master of Horror. With the focus only being on one of the Dark Tower characters, the tale drags a little, but what it leads into is so wonderful that I think we can forgive Mr King.

This is where the series really finds its feet and gets going, with the introduction of additional characters that help us sympathise a bit more with the plight of the book. Where Roland
Dan Pike
Ridiculous plot with ludicrous characters and relationships...This series gives the fantasy genre a whole new meaning with its preposterous subplots...I found it to be 'goofy' and 'nonsensical' in many areas...The only individual with any merit in the series is Roland, and his impact is muted continuously by the exasperating presence of Eddie and Susannah (it hurts to even type their names), who certainly rank at the top in terms of the most annoying characters I have ever come across in any boo ...more
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...

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
Mark McCormick
This story keeps getting better and better. How does he keep coming up with these storylines? I hope the next installment is just as well put together as the first two. I will be starting the next one in a few days. "The Waist lands" is sure to be another cliffhanger.
Jane Apperley
This series becomes more engrossing as it progresses. I didn't really enjoy 'The Gunslinger' but as Roland continues on his journey and meets new characters and travels to different lands, I was glad I had chosen to continue with the story.
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
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
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
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
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.
Brandon Hollingshead
Drawing of the Three Re-Read
Aug 28, 2008 Mom rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
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.
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.
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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
More about Stephen King...

Other Books in the Series

The Dark Tower (7 books)
  • The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower, #1)
  • The Drawing of the Three (The Dark Tower, #2)
  • The Waste Lands (The Dark Tower, #3)
  • Wizard and Glass (The Dark Tower, #4)
  • Wolves of the Calla (The Dark Tower, #5)
  • Song of Susannah (The Dark Tower, #6)
  • The Dark Tower (The Dark Tower, #7)

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“So do we pass the ghosts that haunt us later in our lives; they sit undramatically by the roadside like poor beggars, and we see them only from the corners of our eyes, if we see them at all. The idea that they have been waiting there for us rarely crosses our minds. Yet they do wait, and when we have passed, they gather up their bundles of memory and fall in behind, treading in our footsteps and catching up, little by little.” 137 likes
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