No Celery Please – NYC Edition!

Well, that turned out to be pretty good

Posted in Uncategorized by noceleryplease on August 7, 2007

I have just wrapped up reading Stephen King’s Dark Tower series.

I had tried to read The Gunslinger back in the day when I was really into Stephen King. It came out in 1982, but I was only 8 then, and I didn’t really get into reading his stuff until I was about 12.

I think I probably tried to pick up The Gunslinger when I was about 16 or so.

I hated it.

It was boring. It was nothing like The Stand or It (two of my very favorite books to this day).

It was dry and dusty and the main character was completely unlikeable.

I put it down about halfway through and never tried to pick up any of the Dark Tower books again after that.

But over the last couple of years, since he finished the series, I have run into people here and there in the course of business and, as people who don’t know each other will, have discussed things like books and movies.

Inevitably, any time I talked with someone who shared my love for sci-fi and fantasy books, they would ask if I had read the Dark Tower books and when I said no, would go on about how I really should… wonderful stuff and all that.

So finally, back around the end of June-ish, I broke down and got the books from the library.

I finished this morning, and, I have to say… yes, the Dark Tower series is quite the thing.

It’s huge, and I can’t really describe it, the overarching quest story is riddled with other stories and really ties together a lot of the themes and bits and pieces from other books (like The Stand and It).

I have to say that I really do recommend it.

One warning… You will have to (or at least I had to) slog through The Gunslinger to get to the rest of the books.

It’s important not to skip it for the rest of the story, but I didn’t like the thing any more than I had liked it the first time I tried it.

Still, I have to say that with The Drawing of the Three things took a definite turn in the right direction.

The Waste Lands was also pretty good.

Wizard and Glass gave a lot of good background in a really touching story.

But it was with Wolves of the Calla, released in 2003 – after King was run over and almost died – that the thing really starts moving and (in my opinion) has something of an edge back to the writing.

Wrapping up with Song of Susannah and, of course, the final one, The Dark Tower.

I have no idea how many hundreds of pages was devoted to this story, but it was a lot.

I only took one break while reading the series (come on, I wasn’t going to wait to read HP7) and it was kind of fortuitous, because I broke from reading Wolves of the Calla to read HP7 and it turns out that HP is actually featured in the Wolves book (in fact, if you notice, the TOC and some section headers are actually in HP font, which I found to be hilarious – I guess King must be an HP fan).

I definitely recommend reading the thing through all at one shot… it’s big and kind of complex and needs paying attention too.

Anyway, I guess what I am trying to say is… That was a hell of a thing.


8 Responses to 'Well, that turned out to be pretty good'

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  1. Al said,

    I read through the first couple of books, but it seemed to me that the whole thing had lost direction, so I quit.

    Guess maybe I’ll have to go back and finish it. I hate leaving things unfinished

  2. Jerk Of All Trades 2.0 said,

    I’ll give it a shot. I’ve tried reading The Gunslinger a few times over the years. I’ll muscle through it, cuz I trust you.

    The Stand is my fave King book. I read it twice and then the unabridged version came out so I read that one too.

    M-O-O-N, that spells me reading The Gunslinger.

  3. tiff said,

    Once I finish reading everything Terry Pratchett has ever written, I’ll start this.

    My younger bother LOVED the series – it was really the first time I recall him being totally into something booky, so you know there’s something to it just from that perspective.

  4. tiff said,

    brother, not bother.

  5. wordnerd said,

    You are now ready to come over to my site and play trivia. There are roughly 5-10 Dark Tower questions per week, none of which most of us can answer. I have read a lot of Stephen King, but not this series. Given that It & The Stand are your favorites, I may have to take your advice. I loved both of those as well.

  6. rennratt said,

    I read many of SKs books back in the day.

    I grew up pretty close to ‘his’ town (Bangor, Maine) – and became a fan early on.

    My favorite was “Needful Things” (I didn’t sleep for DAYS!)

    I also loved his Bachman books, especially “Thinner” and the “Hostage” story. Creepy.

    As soon as I finish up with my current Janet Evanovich addiction, I shall try this series.

  7. Dani said,

    I heart Stephen King so much I’d probably hump his leg if I ever met him.

    Unfortunately, I’m serious.

    Try Lisey’s Story, if you haven’t already. Mucho good-o and yes, he definitely got his groove back after that accident. Did he ever.

    And for the sci-fi/fantasy fan in you, try the George RR Martin series A Song of Ice and Fire. BEST series in a long time, from anyone, in my not so humble opinion. It makes me crazy that I picked it up just after the first book was released. Now I have to wait…and wait…and wait… between and it kills me.

  8. Sea Hag said,

    I just Bookmooched the first 3 books of this series, I remember reading it a loooong time ago but I can’t even tell you what it was about.

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