The Gunslinger by Stephen King

This entry is part [part not set] of 7 in the series The Dark Tower

Books Review:2 Treasure Boxes
First Book in The Dark Tower Series
Publisher: Penguin Putnam (June 2003), EBook: 591KB, Language: English, ISBN-0-7865-3721-3

This book starts out with the Gunslinger following the Man in Black. All we really know is that the Gunslinger is good and the man in black is evil.  The chase is occurring in a land where humanity is winding down and there is very little good left in this post-apocalyptic world.  We are not sure why the chase is on or what motivates the Gunslinger. I found this book to be intriguing from the first page.  We do not even know the actual names of the characters, however, as the story unfolds we get drawn into the Gunslinger’s tale. It is told from the gunslinger’s point of view who we eventually learn is Roland Deschain.

This is the first book in the Dark Tower series, there are currently a total of seven books, and Stephen King announced in 2009 that he is currently working on the eighth book, The Wind Through the Keyhole which will be released at some point in the future.  Stephen King is primarily known as a horror author, but this book does not fall into that genre.  Instead it is in the fantasy genre and sometimes considered a western.  The story is told with a third person narrative and focuses primarily on Roland Deschain of Gilead.  The Dark Tower is at the centre of the universe and connects all the varying worlds and time-lines together. These books take place in a post-apocalyptic world where things are running down and time has become weird.

During Roland’s travels we get glimpses into his past and so we are slowly introduced to the character. The writing draws us and makes us care about him and his quest and in typical Steven King style the writing is very descriptive. There is a very gory part where the gunslinger is defending himself against an entire town. During his defence we get an idea of how and why he is a gunslinger. There are also sad parts throughout the book. Stephen King drops hints during the story as to what could be coming up later on. By the end of this first book we have a better idea of what the gunslinger is searching for and why he wants to find the man in black.  We also find out who and what the man in black is.  I found the ending to be very compelling and I will definitely be reading the next book in the series to see what is going to happen next.

I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good story and is in for a long tale since you will read all seven books if you read this first book. If you enjoy reading fantasy/science fiction books then you will definitely enjoy this book since it has a bit of both within it.

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