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Tillabooks: Will's Book Blog

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Wolves of the Calla (The Dark Tower V) by Stephen King. New York: Scribner, 2003. ISBN: 1880418568

I don’t recommend that you read this book unless you’ve read the previous 4 volumes of The Dark Tower series. The previous titles are The Gunslinger, 1982; The Drawing of the Three, 1987; The Waste Lands, 1991 and Wizard and Glass, 1997. There are two more volumes to follow, titled Song of Susannah and The Dark Tower, both scheduled for publication in 2004. For those readers, like myself, who have been following the series avidly since the very beginning, it’s been a long wait, over 20 years from the first volume to the 7th and final one.

These books prove that Stephen King is a master of high fantasy, and demonstrate that he could probably write highly successful fiction in any genre he chose. The Dark Tower series has elements of westerns, fantasy, science fiction and horror, all blended in an irresistible combination that provides for page turning enthrallment, at least for those, like me, who like this kind of thing.

The basic foundation undergirding the series, or perhaps more accurately, the inspiration for it is the poem "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came" by Robert Browning. Having only recently read the actual poem, it is nothing short of staggering that its brief imagery could inspire this mammoth undertaking of a story.

If you are the type of person who enjoys books in series, who takes special pleasure from being caught up in a universe that continues, on and on, for volume after volume, Stephen King’s The Dark Tower is a must read, indeed.

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