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Dark Tower Boxed Set

(The Dark Tower #1-4)

4.49  ·  Rating details ·  4,700 ratings  ·  89 reviews
Set in a world of ominous landscape and macabre menace, The Dark Tower features one of Stephen King’s most powerful creations—The Gunslinger, a haunting figure who embodies the qualities of the lone hero through the ages, from ancient myth to frontier Western legend. As Roland crosses a desert of damnation in a macabre world that is a twisted image of our own, he moves eve ...more
Published October 7th 2003 by Signet (first published 2002)
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4.49  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,700 ratings  ·  89 reviews

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Michelle Lowe
Jul 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Warning: There are some mild spoilers in this review.

These are the first Stephen King novels I’ve read. I wanted to read the first four set in this series before posting a review. Each book now has creases over their spines. I’ve enjoyed these novels very much. Let’s start with, of course, The Gunslinger. . .

The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed.
The story plunges us dead into the already long and gritty quest of Roland Deschain of Gilead to reach the Dark Tower.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Book 1: The Gunslinger (★★★★☆)
Book 2: The Drawing of the Three (★★★★☆)
Book 3: The Waste Lands (★★★★☆)
Book 4: Wizard and Glass (★★★☆☆)
Aug 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, favorites
I didn't read this boxed-set edition but I wanted to review these as a lump.

Let's face it - I loved the whole thing. There isn't another story out there quite like this one. I am not a fan of the fantasy genre - I like my science-fiction on the hardcore side. This series softened my attitude toward fantasy fiction because King applies his softest touch ever here. You can tell that he didn't just knock out another tome for the sake of his publisher, which is a feeling I get about a lot of his lat
Dec 31, 2010 rated it it was amazing
And now for the best and most complex of them all....... I deliberately postponed reading this to catch up with the group. I really don't have anything to add to this. The bleak, seemingly unending journey is described so heartrendingly that yes, one does feel some pity for Mordred.

I am so very glad I decided to re-read the entire series - it was like plunging into another world. I found myself unable to concentrate on any other books while I was reading "The Dark Tower."

And I agree with King, t
Jun 21, 2007 rated it really liked it
OK, I'm not much for horror, but this series is amazing. It's not really horror, more of fantasy/adventure/sci-fi/western. Sarah got me hooked on them. I was trying to put down the whole series (I think there are 7) but couldn't find it all together. These are really good. There is some gore, but the characters are really well-drawn and the story sucks you right in. I think Wizard and Glass was my favorite, as you get the back story of the Gunslinger. The 6th one, Susanna's Song, was the least i ...more
Nicholas Ladieu
Jan 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
A classic telling. Anyone who knows about the history of this series knows king took a break during the telling. Well it shows, the first bunch of books are far superior to the last bunch

The last bunch show a lack of a good editors hand, which I suspect is because it is King and can get away with more.

Also I almost dropped the book when King wrote himself in as a character.. seriously that was just lame.

Anyway despite some tough to get through middle books the ending was somewhat satisfying.. an
Dec 18, 2006 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, fiction, horror
I can't help it - I'm a sucker for horror novels. I love 'em, and I unashamedly admit that I am a big fan of Stephen King. I've read nearly all of his novels, and the Dark Tower series is my favorite. Don't get me wrong - I thoroughly enjoyed his horror classics (The Shining, Carrie, 'Salem's Lot, etc); they are fabulously tense, scary, and just gory enough to make one cringe and get the blood racing. However, the Dark Tower has it all - fantasy, mythology, science fiction, epic, allegory, adven ...more
Oct 01, 2010 is currently reading it
My brother gave me the series to borrow. The first book is going very slowly and difficult to get into, which is strange as I've grown up reading Stephen King, and most of his work (good or bad) is usually very accessible. I'm still holding out for something to click with me.

10-14-10 Twenty pages into the second book, which looks more promising. The first had its moments, but it felt like he was writing in a style that didn't quite suit him. Work and getting ready for winter has been keeping me
Jan 30, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I love Stephen King, but this series is the best I've read of his. The first four books I read twice while I waited for the next three to come out!
Anne De rooij
Oct 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
These are almost no words to describe Stephen King's Magnus opus. The Dark Tower takes you on a wonderful, weird, amazing quest and is set in a universe different, but so like ours.
Michael Sorbello
Mar 29, 2019 rated it liked it
Book 1: The Gunslinger

Grim and intriguing with occasional bursts of philosophical genius, but far too vague in detail and plot direction. Even after having finished the novel, I have no sense of direction of where the plot is heading or where it was ever meant to be heading in the first place. The motivations of the characters, the setting and the story were lost in a jumbled sea of hallucinatory prose and characters speaking in riddles. I have so many unanswered questions that I had to sit back
May 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is one of my favorite stories of all time. I loved Lord of the Rings (of course). I read that Stephen King was influenced by Tolkien as well but was determined to retell the epic story in his own style. He really did. It is a sweeping epic that crosses many different genres (western, sci-fi, fantasy) with one of the most brilliant endings I've ever read. It's a story that has stuck with me my entire life. Steven King is the author that as a kid made me love to read and appreciate the craft ...more
Dean Fox
Dec 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my first introduction to Stephen King, and I loved it! Not at all like the movie. I found it fascinating how he wove all the stories together as the series progressed. A very fun read, and now I'm hooked on his writing!
Feb 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Just finished the fourth book today! Can't wait to read the next 3 books.
I loved the first book and was obsessed with the second, I was less impressed with the third but the fourth book made up for it and then some!
R.L. Manson
Nov 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A very strange mix of fantasy, science fiction, old west, and horror - something that only Stephen King could create. This epic story stirs the emotions and evokes fascination every step of the way. Brilliant!
Oct 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read this series about 10 years ago and loved it, except for the first book.
Now I was ready for a reread. Not only did I love the first book as well, but I found so many hidden things in all of the books I didn't notice the first time. So glad I read them again!
Josh Bibb
Mar 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I literally cannot say enough good things about these books
Aug 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
one book down.
Edward Davies
Mar 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-star-reads
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
Alan Dempsey
Jan 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Hey you: yes, you.

If you're perusing the fantasy genre and for some reason you haven't dipped a toe in this series, I'm your guy. Let me explain to you what's going to happen.

You're going to pick up that first book and it's going to be intriguing to you, not unlike the Sergio Leone Westerns. The Gunslinger is sparse, but it gives you just enough to want to know more:

"The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed."

How can you not keep reading after that line?

You'll experi
Jan 11, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dark-tower
I'm not usually a Stephen King fan.

That said, this series is fantastic. As this is a boxed set, I'll review the books individually...

The Gunslinger: Probably the simplest book, in terms of plot, it does a very good job of introducing Roland and his world, and beginning to reveal what exactly is driving him on his quest.

The Drawing of the Three: Roland gathers his ka-tet (at least, most of them). While the portion of the book that centers on Eddie Dean is highly entertaining and has the same sens
Dec 29, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
If I told you what this series is about, it would ruin everything. In the sketchiest terms, it's about the end of the world, and a person who, more for personal obsession than any sense of goodwill, takes it upon himself to stop it.

By Book 3 (The Waste Lands), you may start picking hints up about what's going on. They start pretty obscure, though.

By 4 (Wizard and Glass), the premise should be obvious, though I wonder if King himself knew how it would end at this point.

I think it's by book 6 (So
Jun 03, 2008 rated it really liked it
I've always enjoyed Steven King's works, and I've often been recommended the Dark Tower series. I decided to get the boxed set convinced that I was going to enjoy the series so much I would want to go from book to book with no interruption.

After reading the first book, The Gunslinger, I felt like perhaps I had made a mistake. The book was incredibly bleak and depressing, and I debated on whether I even wanted to finish it. Book two, The Drawing of the Three, was considerably more interesting. T
Apr 16, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Sci Fi and Fantasy Buffs
Steven King's magnum opus. I've given a short review of all the books below. Based largely on the strengths of books 1, 2 and 4, I rate the whole series of seven books a three.

On "THE GUNSLINGER" His first book in a very long series starts out well enough.

On "THE DRAWING OF THE THREE" Gotta chuk!? Gotta up-chuk!? Okay, not so bad but not as good as the first.

On "THE WASTELANDS" The series improves with fast-paced, difficult to follow forays into alternate realities.

Nov 03, 2016 rated it liked it
I read this series over the course of about 10 years. Two of the seven books were awesome and I gave them five stars ("Gunslinger" & "Wizard and Glass"). One is probably the worst book I've ever read ("The Song of Susannah") ... ugh! The last book had some great parts, but was largely tedious (especially the last 3rd) and went out with a ginormous fizzle (except perhaps very end of the ending which somehow seemed appropriate). The other books were immemorial. If I could have a do over, I wou ...more
Oct 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
Books 1-4 were amazing, but it all went downhill from there. It is apparent to me that Stephen King tired of writing about Roland and only finished the series to appease his fans. Book 7 was horrible. Any time the author writes a letter to the readers in the front of the book telling them to bite their tongues and be happy the series got its ending, you know the book is going to be less than stellar. There are times I wish I hadn't read the ending and had just imagined one on my own.

Still, the f
Dec 28, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Romantic fantasy readers
Shelves: favorites, fantasy
When I mean Romantic Fantasy, I mean more of a certain type of Romanticism where there's a rose representing all that's good in the world and where this is more the realm of a cowboy, which essentially is what Roland is. Mind you, as the series gets going, there are some gaping plot holes that aren't quite addressed in my opinion, but the sheer atmosphere and the Romantic tale swing it far in its favor. The significant emotional impact I had in the end also serves to force me to rate this fairly ...more
May 25, 2013 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed the first installment of the series. The constant tension and anxiety that King creates is master. I also love how the desert becomes on of the principal characters of the first novel. Great story to top it off. Now with that said, the series takes a rollercoaster dive soon after. The next two installments are interesting and kept me reading. The characters were strong and the story was fresh and original. But the remaining installments were mediocre at best. When King put himse ...more
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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

Other books in the series

The Dark Tower (8 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)
  • The Wind Through the Keyhole (The Dark Tower, #4.5)
  • Wolves of the Calla (The Dark Tower, #5)
  • Song of Susannah (The Dark Tower, #6)
  • The Dark Tower (The Dark Tower, #7)
“It’s not supposed to end this way. Whatever else Roland and his ka-tet knows, that’s one thing that they ken for sure. This business ain’t supposed to end, and end bloody, at the base of some godforsaken pile of rock called Jericho Hill. Because John Farson is evil, and they’re good, and good may have its setbacks and bumps along the road, but when the final bell gongs, only good is left to hear its peals. They know that. They just…they know it. This ain’t how it’s gonna end. ‘Cept, deep down…they know it is.” 3 likes
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