Book Reviews of The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged)

The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged)
The Gunslinger - Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged
Author: Stephen King
Audio Books swap for two (2) credits.
ISBN-13: 9780453006361
ISBN-10: 0453006361
Publication Date: 1988
Rating:
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 19

4.1 stars, based on 19 ratings
Publisher: New Audio Library
Book Type: Audio Cassette
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

100 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 7 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 6
A Great start to a amazing saga, great for King fans.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 12 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
An entirely different style than King's other novels. He wrote this series over decades and I consider it to be one of his greatest works.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 24 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
In the first book of this brilliant series, Stephen King introduces readers to one of his most enigmatic heroes, Roland of Gilead, the last gunslinger. Nothing will ever be the same. Roland's quest for the Dark Tower takes readers on a wildly epic ride - through parallel worlds and across time. A classic tale of colossal scope - crossing over terrain from the Strand, The Eyes of the Dragon, Insomnia, The Talisman, Black House, Hearts in Atlantis, Salem's Lot, and other family King haunts - the adventure takes hold with the turn of each page.

This heroic fantasy is set in a world of ominous landscape and macabre menace that is a dark mirror of our own. A spellbinding tale of good versus evil, it 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.

The gunslinger's quest involves the pursuit of the man in black, a liaison with the sexually ravenous Alice, and a friendship with the boy from New York called Jake. Both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike, The gunslinger is stunning proof of Stephen King's storytelling sorcery.

"A compelling whirlpool of a story that draws one irretrievably to its center." --Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
The gunslinger is and excellent book, but I thought it was so much better before King revised it. When he first introduced that smarmy way of talking in The Wastelands' scene, I thought it was cute, but to make everyone in the whole series talk that way, even going back to make previous characters talk that way, is just annoying. Therefore, I don't care to keep this book; but it's still a good story.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
The first book in stephen kings best series!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 3 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Contrary to a lot of folks, I actually thought this and the final book were the best books in the Dark Tower series. "The Gunslinger" has the raw energy of a folktale and a minimum of fluff.

The pacing is perfect, always driving forwards. I wish the rest of the books in the series would have shared the same pace.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 14 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
An excellent read up to the 3/4 mark. Great feel, wonderful blend of genres (Western, post-apocalyptic SF, horror). The last quarter gets lost to some degree. Falls apart in being all about the "set up" of the series as a whole rather than about resolving the story just told. Takes what has heretofore been intriguing glimpses of a greater whole and turns the tactic to more manipulative end by creating a mish-mash of "words that mean nothing" as if the effect will be perceived prophetic rather than simply jumbled and unfocused. The implication that this section holds some deeper meaning that might be divined by greater study? Falls apart under the duress of greater study. But that being said, the first 3/4 of the book is good enough to make reading it worthwhile, if not wholly satisfying.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
Helpful Score: 2
I won't say this is King's best work, but I do love the story. In the afterword, he writes about how the story came about--which to me explains why it doesn't measure up quite as well as The Stand or Lisey's Story to me.

But, I do look forward to the other books--I've already ordered them and am anxiously waiting for them.

I hope that there is more of the gunslinger's past explained--I really like that part of his world, before things "passed on."
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 5 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Great read, love the dark tower series!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 63 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Great S.King book!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 62 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
The first novel of the series, now expanded and revised by the author. Roland Filead is the last gunslinger, a haunting figure, a loner on a spellbinding journey into good and evil. His desolate world frighteningly mirrors our own, and the novel is both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike.
-from back cover
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 41 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I couldn't get into the book, myself. The series has a cult following, though, or so it seems.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 6 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Good book. Was kinda expecting a little more to happen..but there's always part 2!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
Helpful Score: 1
This is the first one in the Gunslinger series and hooks you from the first word.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 24 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
In 1989 this book began the Gunslinger series. The King rendition of the battle of good and evil in a warped western setting, went on to become one of Kings most read and waited for journeys...
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 170 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
In my opinion, Stephen King's best book. A surreal journey with a gunslinger chasing a man in black across a desert in a world that could be a million planes away...or a dark future world of our own...or a mixture of each? This book is like an acid trip without using drugs. It is the first part of a series, but in my opinion can be enjoyed perfectly well by itself.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 12 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
It is my belief you really like The Dark Tower books or you don't. I have tried to read this book twice and never can get through it. I like most of King's books but not this one.

Go ahead a request it - you might be one of the people that like it.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 333 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This heroic fantasy is set in a world of ominous landscape and macabre menace that is a dark mirror of our own. A spellbinding tale of good versus evil, it features one of Stephen King's most powerful creations-The Gunslinger, a haunting figure who embodies the qualities of a lone hero through the ages, from ancient myth to frontier western legend.
The Gunslinger's questinvolves the pursuit of the Man in Black, a liaison with the sexually ravenous Alice, and a friendship with the kid from Earth called Jake. Both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 69 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This is the quintessential Stephen King Series! If you never read any other books by Stephen King, this is the book with which to start. The characters become old friends, the situations are creative and mind-expanding and yet you have analogies to the age old good versus evil that all fine reads should have. Not just excellent writing, but this book delivers on an emotional level as well.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
Helpful Score: 1
A friend I work with recommended this series to me. The first time I read The Gunslinger, I loved it. But, in comparison to the entire rest of the series, this book is okay. Every book just gets better and better.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 3 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This is the first book in the series "The Dark Tower" by Stephen King. A heroic tale of good versus evil, it features one of Stephen King's most powerful creations--The Gunslinger, a haunting figure who embodies the qualities of the lone hero throughout the ages, from ancient myth to frontier western legend. His pursuit of The Man in Black, his liason with the sexually ravenous Alice, his friendship with the kid from Earth called Jake, are part of a drama that is both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike, an alchemy of storytelling socery.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 23 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
great book
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 6 more book reviews
One of my all-time favorites - an intense blend of the western, horror, and science-fiction genres.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 21 more book reviews
A long book that mostly kept me entertained waiting for something to happen with a few peaks of something happening that pretty much never made any sense. Yes, definitely weird with Tolkien and western influences. It's kind of like Mel Gibson in Road Warrior meets John Wayne in True Grit meets Final Destination or something like that. I bought the second one after I finished this one. I guess because I'm intrigued enough with The Gunslinger to see if something will happen in that one. It's either a work of genius or one of the worst books I've ever read. I'm not certain which yet.
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This book has the best first line of a book that I have ever read.
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A compelling, off-kilter adventure in a strange yet familiar world. Begins King's epic story and leaves you wanting more.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 298 more book reviews
awesome series..
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 204 more book reviews
This is definitely the start of something larger. The gunslinger chases after the Man in Black, over a bleak terrain...

There's a lot of mood setting here, and an introduction to the strange in the world that's been created. It doesn't feel like typical King at all, though that may have more to do with the age he was when he wrote the book, more than anything else.

Worth reading, if you feel committed to King's whole magnum opus, but it's sure not a last minute airport purchase...

4 of 5 stars.
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This is an unabridged reading by the author, Stephen King, of the first in The Dark Tower series. It is on four audiocassettes (6 hours, 16 minutes)
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 3 more book reviews
In the beginning King mentions his desire to come up with something akin to the Lord of the Rings. This book reeks of cheap knock-off. I got maybe 100 or so pages into this book and realized I only had a vague understanding of what was going on, and so decided to put it down permanently. This is only one in a series of King books that I couldn't get into. I just don't get his writing style.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
excellent book
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 7 more book reviews
This is the first Stephen King book I've read and I was not disappointed. A cross between the epic, magical fantasies of Tolkien's style, and "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly." King makes it work in this first of seven series. I can't wait to read the next book!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 42 more book reviews
I love the Dark Tower Series; it's an intriguing and fun read.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
This book has some beautiful illustrations.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 10 more book reviews
this is the first of the dark tower series from stephen king. i think it is real good but to grasp it you have to continue. i think the only drawback is that the book seems incomplete. "to me"
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
pretty good- a bit different than most Stephen King books.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
Great reading, very creative!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
Although I'm a Stephen King fan, I found this to be a very odd book with a not very likeable main character. HOWEVER, I had already ordered the 2nd book in the series and decided to give it a try. To my surprise, I'm hooked and am now reading the 4th book in the series.
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Classic Stephen King
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 25 more book reviews
It's an entertaining (if bizarre) read.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 4 more book reviews
it is a must for Steven King fans. Graphic and unsettling, but excellent storytelling.
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This is a Plume edition complete with Michael Whelan illustrations.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
I have read up to book 3 in the series and think it is great.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 225 more book reviews
An okay book but not the best I've read by King.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 7 more book reviews
Great and original story. The initial book in Stephen King's self-proclaimed opus.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 35 more book reviews
Everyone says the dark tower series is great, but I couldn't even finish book one. Stephen King rambles way too much, jumps around in time to tell boring stories... It's just no good.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 42 more book reviews
Roland, The Gun Slinger, begins his journey for the man in black. This is one of Stephen Kings best. His series, "...I wanted to do something epic like LOTR and the DARK TOWER called to me..." .
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 12 more book reviews
large text. color illustrated version of the dark tower
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 45 more book reviews
A more difficult King read but I understand it is worth it because the next ones in the series are great. I hope you have better luck than I did.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 25 more book reviews
Awesome series! Must read!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
Although I'm a Stephen King fan, I didn't like this book at all. Admittedly, I'm not keen on either fantasy or western genres and The Gunslinger is both, but a friend recommended it and I thought I'd like it anyway.

The book is an early Stephen King work, and though he did some rewriting before this publication, it doesn't have the literary mastery of many of his later novels. I also found it hard to get past some of the language used, words and phrases indicative of a world different than our own. They only distracted me from the story. Roland was mostly an unsympathetic protagonist and I found him difficult to relate to or care about. He and the other characters fell flat.

Reading The Gunslinger felt like the title character's quest across the desert - slow, dry, and without much to sustain my interest. I collapsed, parched and exhausted, halfway through and didn't make it the rest of the way.
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Exciting!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 62 more book reviews
Roland Deschain is introduced as the gunslinger whose epic journey to find the Man in Black spans over 25 years as King dishes out Dark Tower books 1-7. Who knew the opening line "the Man in Black fled across the desert, and the Gunslinger followed" would be the beginning of King's "Magnum Opus". This is certainly the shortest of The Dark Tower books and those that are not necessarily King fans would enjoy it. The Dark Tower is a world in and of itself,,,,if you let yourself get pulled in, keep in mind it takes a lot of time to get through all of those books, but it's worth it. Roland is my hero!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 11 more book reviews
I love stephen king, but this book was kind of slow. In general, it was a pretty good book, just slow.
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The End of the Beginning, February 12, 2006
Reviewer: R. Shah "Classic Rock God" (Bensalem, PA USA)

The Dark Tower isn't a typical Steven King read. It's more The Stand-esque in that it isn't much of a horror book. It incorporates minimal horror elements (I'm sure King couldn't help it), but plays out like an adventure or even a fantasy novel. It's an enticing read that makes you hunger for more of what King has to offer with the series. Unlike a lot of King's other works, this one isn't really dense and somewhat hard to put down once you start reading. The opening of the book is slow, but it really picks up around the middle of the first part. Also, the illustrations are very aesthetically pleasing. My only complaints with this book are the afforementioned slow opening and the somewhat overuse of foreshadowing. But other than those 2 flaws, the book is a solid read and makes you want to read the other 6 books.
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Part of the Dark Tower Series: Fantasy/Suspense
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 210 more book reviews
This is still one of my favorites!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 18 more book reviews
This heroic fantasy is set in a world of ominous landscape and macabre menace that is a dark mirror of our own. A spellbinding tale of good versus efil, it 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. His pursuit of The Man in Black, his liaison with the sexually ravenous Alice, his friendship with the kid from Earth called Jake, are part of the drama that is both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike, an alchemy of storytelling sorcery.
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Thus begins the saga of the Gunslinger! And boy oh boy, it's a good one!
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Very sci-fi and a little weird, but readable
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Excellent series.
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Story of a haunting figure who embodies the qualities of the lone hero through the ages from ancient myth to frontier western legend.His pursuit of the man in black,his liaison w/the sexually ravenous Alice,his friendship w/the kid from Earth called Jake,are part of that drama that are both grppingly realistic and eerily dreamlike,an alchemy of storyteeling sorcery.
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The Gunslinger, a haunting figure who embodies the qualities of the lone hero through the ages from ancient myth to frontier western legend. His pursuit of The Man in Black, his liaison with the sexually ravenous Alice, his friendship with the kid from Earth called Jake, are part of the drama that is both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike, an alchemy of storytelling sorcery.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 28 more book reviews
Filled with ominous landscapes and macabre menace, Stephen King's latest mass market novel features The Gunslinger, a haunting figure in combat with The Man in Black in an epic battle of good versus evil. A spellbinding tale that is both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
This begins a not-to-be-missed series we fans loved for years. If you love King already, or are just thinking of reading him for the first time- this one's great.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 391 more book reviews
A heroic fantasy that pits good versus evil. Who will win?
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Great book, intense, scary.
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"A sort of hush fell over my previously busy creative life--not a writer's block, but a sense that it was time to stop goofing around with a pick and shovel and get behind the controls of one big Great God A'Mighty steamshovel, a sense that it was time to try and dig something big out of the sand...and so, one night...I found myself sitting at my old office-model Underwood...and writing the words that began this story.--from the Afterword by Stephen King
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May turn out to be Stephen King's greatest literary achievement.
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Book 1 in the Gunslinger Series... Heroic fantasy set in a world of ominous landscape and macrabe menace that is a dark mirror of ouw own world. King's typical spellbinding material.
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This book didn't do much for me, but this one hooked me on the series. I realize the necessity for "The Gunslinger" but until you've read this second book in the Dark Tower series, I really don't think you know whether you'll like the series or not. So read this, and hang in there!
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on + 84 more book reviews
great book
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
My favorite of this series. Dark and different than King's other work. I liked this story so much that I keep reading King's new books, waiting for another like this one.
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This is the first in the Dark Tower Series. Very easy read and an excellent start to the series. Leaves you wanting to know more about the character.
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As his first book in the Dark Tower series, it captivated me enough to continue to the second book. The book entangles you into the life of Roland the gunslinger. After reading it I just had to continue to see what would happen next. Very riveting book. I know some were discouraged with the first book and if you are one of those people... keep on going. You'll be glad you did.
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This book is not your typical Stephen King horror story, but it was still enjoyable. I will read the rest in the series.
reviewed The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1 - Unabridged) on
Fascinating book, great way to kick off a series.
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This book was quite hard to follow and kept me pretty confused as to what was going on. Unlike a lot of books by King I found myself not being able to care about the characters in this book. If it weren't for all the questions that were left open at the end of this book I probably would not read the next.
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I generally like Stephen King's books. I couldn't really stick with this one. I know many people do like this series, but I just wasn't drawn in.
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I read somewhere else that with this series you'll either like the main character or you won't. I may have to read the second book to make sure how I really feel. It was an easy read..but I wasn't as drawn into the story like I expected to be.
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This is the beginning of an awesome story. There are confusing and unexplainable things in this book, don't worry about them, keep them aside and store them in your mind and keep on reading. Afterall, this is only book 1 of an epic story. The story will reveal its secret slowly and excitingly later.
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Enjoyable, but disturbingly King-like. Do not read with a weak tummy.
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This heroic fantasy is set in a world of ominous landscape and macabre menace that is a dark mirror of our own. A spellbinding tale of good versus evil, it features one of 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. The gunslinger's quest involves the pursuit of the man in black, a liaison with the sexually ravenous Alice and a friendship with the boy from New Yourk called Jake. Both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike.
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Book one in one of King's best series
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Great book!
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The first of a wondefully spun tale of our word and the one of Rolands.
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Heroic fantasy along the lines of Robert E. Howard working in a post-apocalyptic backdrop. Didn't care for the overwrought, cosmic ending, but it serves as a segue to the sequals.
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The first book in the Dark Tower series, it's a spellbinding tale of good versus evil. A+++++
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I really don't understand why everyone likes this book so much. I thought it was beyond boring and after putting it down twice I forced myself to finish it, convinced there had to be something redeeming about it. Nope, just more boring, uninteresting details and characters.


**I recently listened to this on audiobook and it was much better then reading. Enough so that I continued with the next book**
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This is the best series of books written to date! A bit different than the usual King, you will fall in love w/these characters!
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ISBN--0451160525

This is a 1982 paperback version
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The Gunslinger pursues The Man In Black, his liason wih the sexually ravenous Alic.
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In the first book of this brilliant series, Stephen King introduces readers to one of his most enigmatic heros, Rolad of Gilead. The Last Gunslinger. He is a haunting figure, a loner on a spellbinding journey into good and evil. In his desolate world, which frighteningly mirrors our own, Roland pursues the Man In Black, encounters an alluring woman named Alice, and begins a friendship with the Kid from Earth called Jake.
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The Dark Tower - The Gunslinger --- This heroic fantasy is set in a world of ominous landscape and macabre menace that is a dark mirror of our own. A spellbinding tale of good versus evil, it 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. His pursuit of the Man in Black, his liaison with the sexually ravenous Alice, his friendship with the kid from Earth called Jake, are part of the drama that is both grippingly realistic and eerily dreamlike, an alchemy of storytelling sorcery. Complete in itself, the Gunslinger is the first novel in an epic series, The Dark Tower.
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Those who have read the Gunslinger series are crazy about it. I wasn't able to get into it myself, but hey, it's Stephen King, right?
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older printing
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Excellent Read...part of box set.
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The front cover is older than the picture showing here. The inside covers have turned a little yellow. Overall the book is in good condition. It has been read once.
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The front cover does not look like this picture.
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Another wonderful King book...in great shape