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Book Review: Stephen King’s The Gunslinger

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The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower, Book 1)
by Stephen King

Basic Plot: Roland is a gunslinger, an order of well-trained gun-toting warriors in what seems to be a post-apocalyptic future (after the world has “moved on”), but also could be a surreal dreamscape. He follows the ‘man in black’ across a desert and encounters various characters; there are some flashback sequences filling in his past. The book moves towards the encounter of the gunslinger and the man in black, a sequence that illuminates the gunslinger’s obsession with attaining the Dark Tower, the namesake of the series, and the reason why the gunslinger is following the man in black in the first place.

The Gunslinger is more of a surreal fantasy than a horror story, which King is most well-known for. There are some spooky elements, but just enough to spice it up. Imagine the wild west with supernatural elements and an atmospheric mood, and an underlying metaphysical quest to tie things together. If that sounds good to you, check this book out.

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About Ronald C McKito

  • Did you read the original or recently revised version?

    This is one my favorite all time books. It’s got a classic, timeless quality to it that along with the subsequent six books stand, I predict, with Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, etc. as all-time great epic tales.

  • RC

    I read the original version. I’ve been meaning to go check out the revised on an see if I notice much difference.

  • Ken

    I read this book a few years back…and was dissapointed with it. A lot of my dissapointment was due to the person who let me read it over hyping it….I may give it another try though

  • Archie

    Gunslinger is an exceptional look at ourselves through the eyes of Roland as well as through the eyes of the other characters. I was impressed by the way King told the story, and I can only hope that, if a movie is made, it not be the typical Hollywood version of King’s works.

  • RC

    I know that King has stated that he is not sure if he wants it made into a film, but he did mention that he would rather have it made while he is still alive so that he can have creative control over the movies. Since this is King’s baby who knows?

  • As most people already know, this is just the kickoff for Kings biggest project: The Dark Tower saga.

    If you read this book, you should read the other Dark Tower books as well, only then the vague parts in this book will start to make sense.

    The best thing about this ook is probably the atmosphere.

  • lovedit

    loved it so much