The first in the Dark Tower series, we meet Roland, the last Gunslinger, as he makes his way across the desert in pursuit of the Man in Black and begin to learn about his quest to reach the Dark Tower.
This is the second time that I have read The Gunslinger. I’ll be honest, the first time I read it I hated it, but that was about 12 years ago. I picked it up again because Amanda over at Floor to Ceiling Books had decided to host a readalong of the series. I love the rest of the books in the series so decided to join in.
This time around I enjoyed the book. It took effort to only read the pages being discussed for the weeks readalong post and not just carry on and finish the whole book. In fact, I’m not even sure why I didn’t like the book before (although I wasn’t alone in not liking it). I found the imagery fantastic. I could really picture the bleak landscapes that Roland and Jake were crossing and Roland’s flashbacks really felt alive.
Perhaps I enjoyed it this time around because I know where the story is going (and how it ends) so I wasn’t constantly waiting for answers that weren’t coming. Perhaps it’s because I have read a lot more King since then (at the time of my first read of The Gunslinger I had read quite a lot of King but now I have read almost everything he has published, with the exception of two full length novels and probably a handful of short stories), or perhaps it’s simply because I’m 12 years older than I was back then. Whatever the reason I’m glad I re-read the book. It was nice to be back In Roland’s world and I shall re-read the rest of the series before too long as well as I now have the taste for it.