Reviewed by: Max Hallett (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Tue, 29 Mar 2005 09:43:54)
It was good and all, but it was such a gear change from Gunslinger. I mean don't get me wrong Roland taking over bodies to get his astin and cheflex is pure genious, but I mean come-on the whole Lady of Shadows part was BORING!!! The only part I liked was when he goes to get some bullets and he gets all excited. So other than that the book was dull and I thought there was never a dull moment in mid-world!!!!!
Reviewed by: Little Blaine (?) (Mon, 10 Nov 2003 17:28:01)
This second volume is an impressive one, taking up the story right after The Gunslinger yet changing tones to a bleaker yet more compelling mood. Each of the new characters is interesting and fresh, each one bringing their own twists into the storyline. The action here is quick and full of firepower. If a movie were ever made of this (which is impossible, considering the scope), I'd put up Quentin Tarantino for it fascinating characters (with great exchanges of dialogue to boot), quick-paced gunfights and sheer coolness. Of all the Dark Tower books, this one is definitely the most "hard-core".
Reviewed by: Trevor (email@example.com) (Mon, 21 Jul 2003 12:02:19)
The Most Wonderfully Different
The Drawing of the Three begins by completely re-creating the character of Roland within the first few pages. King's new subtitle, then, is highly appropriate - Renewal. Roland is no longer the cold superman we met in the last book; he is maimed, and plagued with both disease and conscience. By the end he has also begun to open his heart again, though just a little. This chapter in the Dark Tower Saga is not meant to be a great stride forward in the quest itself, but rather is character piece, giving us reasons to care about the most unlikely people in the world - a heroin junkie, a woman who belongs in a mental hospital, and a mass-murderer. Yet somehow, King makes it work. It is longer than The Gunslinger, yet there is still nothing wasted - Ever character's flaws ultimately shape who they become: Eddie's heroin addiction is transformed into a need for the Tower (the First Tower Junkie); Roland's unwavering will and determination begin to feed his soul instead of draining it as he becomes a teacher and remembers what friends are, and how much they matter; Sussanah's disabilities bring two advantages - mixed gentleness and strength, and of course, her chair, which ends up being very pivotal in saving their lives. The whole point of the book is that weakness is only weakness so long as you let it be; courage and friendship can make you strong no matter what diseased blood crawls through your veins.
This book is well known for one other reason - it has more confusing mistakes (or are they?) than any other book I've ever read. (Which way is east? What year is it? What were those guys' names again?) Yet, for all this, it was not until I read The Drawing of the Three, specifically, the part where Roland is in Mort, that I actually started to like him. This cold, taciturn man from another book is paying for things he takes and protecting the innocent. It was here that I realised that Roland wasn't just a protagonist, but a hero, despite everything I'd seen in the previous book and a half.
That's what Renewal is really all about - becoming something greater than you were before. Roland achieves it, and so does the Dark Tower series.
Reviewed by: Stuart (SJwho@aol.com) (Thu, 3 Jul 2003 18:10:33)
The Best in the series so far...
I have to admit that I was disappointed with The Gunslinger when I first read it. Here was a book I waited 6 or 7 years to get my hands on (unavailable to the common Joe who didn't know about Grant Publishing), and it ended up being a major letdown. What I enjoyed the most of The Drawing of the Three is how much hell King puts Roland through during the course of the book. The Gunslinger leaves the reader with the feeling that Roland is near invincible; unflinching in his quest for the tower. In the very first chapter of The Drawing of the Three, he loses most of his hand to the lobstrosities. He spends half of the book fighting off death by infection, in addition to trying to survive the gunfights that Eddie gets him into. Roland comes off more human in this book than in The Gunslinger. I also loved the way that the 3 individuals who were "drawn" were all seriously flawed. At first glance, Roland has drawn a druggie, a schizophrenic, and a murderer to aid him in his quest to the tower. The resolution of the 3 drawn characters is one of King's better finishes to a novel. I also thought that the use of the doors as portals to the different worlds was very effective. All in all, I thought this book told the most complete story of the first 4 novels thus far.
Reviewed by: Chris (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Wed, 21 May 2003 23:28:20)
I am a pretty big S.K. fan and have recently worked through the first two books of the Dark Tower series. While I enjoyed all of the first book with the exception of the "Waystation" section which I thought moved slowly, I enjoyed The Drawing of the Three even more.
Eddie Dean is a wonderful character and a perfect precursor to later "wise-ass" characters like Dinky from Everything's Eventual, and a good expansion on earlier "wise-asses" like Charlie Decker. I have mixed feelings about Odetta/Detta. A good character overall, but her "jive" talk grew tiresome after a while. I think King over did it just a bit. I know she is supposed to be a characture but jeeze! My one other complaint with the book is the number of editorial mistakes involving years. Our webmaster has done a good job picking out most of these in his "nitpicking" section although I would disagree with a couple comments. Overall, I think you can nail it down to Eddie is from 1987, Odetta from 1964, and Jake and Jack Mort from the late 70's. You might be able to pinpoint 1977 from the first book but I can't remember off hand. One other big error that drove me nuts: Roland claims not to know the letter "H" but yet he is familiar with the Beatles' "Hey Jude." Last time I checked "hey" starts with an "h". While not an overly big deal to the story these mistakes did annoy an "A-type" personality like myself.
Overall, wonderful book and I'm looking forward to reading The Waste Lands which I have heard is the best of the series thus far.
And The Tower is Closer...
Reviewed by: Josh (email@example.com) (Mon, 16 Dec 2002 07:28:34)
Better than the first, I read it in 8 days, I couldn't put it down. I like how he took people to other time periods and he could take over people. With all the twist and turns of the book, he still finished with a surprise. I won't give any away so you'll have to read it if you haven't.
Reviewed by: damien (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Wed, 30 Oct 2002 16:13:20)
This and The Gunslinger continue to be the best books in the series. I especially enjoyed The Drawing of the Three because of the analogies used to describe Eddie, etc.
Reviewed by: Penguin (email@example.com) (Fri, 1 Mar 2002 07:08:20)
A waste of time
I found the first Dark Tower novel fascinating, but the second left quite a bit to be desired. King, in his quest to create a work of high imagination, seems to find himself not up to the challenge, and wastes this novel "drawing" three characters from our world into his. Instead of exploring Roland's world, we find ourselves petering about our own with the new characters. These people, it also must be said, leave a lot to be desired for participants in the long saga that King envisions the Dark Tower series to be. Sometimes it seems like King picks his characters the same way Survivor or The Real World do: by putting together people who obviously will not go well together. The subplot of Odetta Walker being wheelchair bound is unnecessary and monumentally annoying; King seems to include it for no other reason than to fill pages with descriptions of moving along the wheelchair that he would have ordinarily been forced to occupy with creative storyline. If you are interested in The Dark Tower series, have someone give you the gist of this novel rather than read it, and move along to The Wastelands, which is a considerably more enjoyable read.
Reviewed by: Frederic Flament (firstname.lastname@example.org)
More riddles on the path to the Dark Tower
The wheel of the ka is running and Roland is forming back his company of hold. The way he understands how the doors work and what they are really is fascinating. Something I like with King's book is that when you read it you wonder if he has mocked it up at all or if he has lived it. Take for example the lobster-like monsters on the beach, who could possibly mock up such monsters? I know only one other author who was fascinated by bigger than ever creatures: Jules Verne.
Reviewed by: Derek (email@example.com)
After The Gunslinger King had to do something special with the Dark Tower series in order for it to be successful, because the second novel of a series can make or brake that particular series if not done well. King came out on top though and gave us one of his greatest achievements. I remember when I started to read this novel, which was the same day I finished The Gunslinger, and for two days straight I didn't go anywhere or do anything but read this novel. I think Dark Tower fans and King fans would agree with me that this is one hell of a novel.
Reviewed by: TJ (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Reason to Continue
I wasn't very satisfied with The Gunslinger, it got confusing and everything but there was a cliffhanger at the end and I had already bought The Drawing of the Three. So I read it and by the time he was at Eddie's door, I was reading non-stop night and day. Something with drugies just seems interesting to me, and some of the new characters were cool too. The Jack Mort part was a good ending and I liked the book overall.