Reviewed by: DTgirl (email@example.com) (Wed, 20 Apr 2005 15:11:45)
King Kicks Butt in Thrilling, Emotional Tale!
Definetly one of the best, I had to try very hard not to cry when Susan died (even if you haven't read this book, by now you should know that Susan died a crispy death). Roland's vast display of emotions throughout this book was a wee-bit surprising but it shows us a different, more human side of him. This book alowes us a gaze into Roland's shortlived child hood, and tells us the tragic story of the only girl Roland ever truly loved. In this book, King showes us how closely intertwined Roland's world is with our own and brings up the ever popular subject of the Crimson King! If you haven't already, READ THIS BOOK! Relinquish the Tower? I think not!
Reviewed by: Cam Weston (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Tue, 27 Apr 2004 19:56:55)
I liked this book because it was very moving for me, especially when Susan died, that was really sad because they had such a love for each other
Reviewed by: Mar|sa (email@example.com) (Sat, 24 Apr 2004 11:30:44)
By Far The Best
I was extremely impressed by this book. King had already captured my heart with the first three books but in this one he really stole it. It was very long but when it comes down to it the story was truly amazing and captivating. You get to know Roland on a more... personal level I guess you can say. You finally understand how he came to be this silent lonesome gunslinger and you learn about the sensitive side he harbors deep within himself. The whole tale of Susan and Roland brought tears to my eyes and really changed my life you can say. This book is a great read and probably the best book in the series!
Reviewed by: Kethy (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Thu, 12 Feb 2004 05:57:13)
My favourite of them all
I really liked the 4th book. I started reading it and just couldn't put it down. The book gives you a look on the more "human" side of Roland, making him not just the last gunslinger and a cold determined person, but also one who has suffered and who hides in his loneliness to lick his wounds and prevent more hurt. With the coming of his new friends, he learns to be more open and that makes him one of my favourite characters in the book, after Jake. Read it!!!!! There's so much more emotion than in the other books...
Reviewed by: Grant Lankard (email@example.com) (Mon, 19 Jan 2004 01:08:27)
the worst one
The only reason I finished this book was because I was hoping that the fifth would be better. This book is awful. It's all backstory... and not very interesting back story at that. Then that whole business about the Wizard of Oz at the end... What was that all about? This stinks.
Reviewed by: Josh (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Wed, 03 Dec 2003 18:15:56)
Just finished, and speechless
I just finished the book, and I have to say, I am truley speechless, though I thought it was corny with a (spoiler ahead) Wizard of Oz part, I think he did a great job on the book, so far it is now my favorite in the series, and I can't wait to read Wolves of the Calla.
Reviewed by: Neo (email@example.com) (Mon, 12 May 2003 11:10:13)
From start to finish, the best.
Three days straight I read this book, I marvelled, I wondered and when it all was over, I wept.
Reviewed by: Ryan Heffernan (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Sat, 19 Apr 2003 17:49:47)
Best Book I've Ever Read
Wow. I have been a fan of Stephen King for a while, but have always kept my distance from the Dark Tower. I have never liked fantasy, and figured reading The Gunslinger would be a waste of time. Eventually, around last february I said what the hell and picked it up. About 2 weeks later it was read and I was left panting for more. I have loved every book so far more than the last, and was worried about the fourth becuase it is mostly spent on the past, not the Beam business which I want to know about. Reading Wizard and Glass was one of the most amazing things i have ever done. I became so attached to the characters it was scary (especially Cuthbert) and I could not put the book down. When I wasn't reading, I was thinking about reading. This book was almost like Maerlyn's ball for me; I looked into it and found it impossible to escape. This book consumed by life for the week I spent reading it. After finishing it I was breathless, and almost in tears (If I met Cordelia Delgado in person I would lock her in my basmeent and torture her for years until she died). Even after all is said and done I cannot stop thinking about this book. I may even read it again. A movie MUST be made of this book. A movie could never be made to encompass the entire series, but this book screams movie all over.
Reviewed by: Lee Blevins (email@example.com) (Sat, 22 Feb 2003 08:43:54)
A Great Read
This fourth book of the Dark Tower series, well for lack of a better word, rocked. Roland becomes human in this book, not only a cold-blooded killer who whiped out a whole town. Personally I was thrilled to read about Cuthbert and Alain, that was something I've been waiting to do. Though I think Alain was slightly downplayed and I'd like to know more about him. The character of Sheemie was also very intriguing. The connections in this book from King's others were amazing. You could put things together. I loved it.
Reviewed by: Matt (?) (Fri, 03 Jan 2003 08:51:38)
The best book ever
This would have to be the best series ever written. Like Star Wars says, every saga has a beginning, well this book is it. This book opens up Roland as a character. Who would have guessed that King could answer so many questions in just one book. The whole series of these books seems to me to one Big Riddle, which also happens to be a major part of the start of Wizards and Glass.
I mean Roland to me seems like the ultimate hero; he's Luke Skywalker, Indiana Jones and even MacGyver all rolled up into one.
This book explains how Roland came to be. That short time in Hambry changed his life for ever and we get to see where the trek for the Dark Tower really began and the deadly choices and sacrifices that Roland has to make to reach the Dark Tower. I mean he didn't even know what it was or what it did all he knows is that he has to find it before his world moves on forever.
And I don't know any other writer who can not only make a masterpiece of a series of books but also tie in all of his other books into the same series of books. The thought is just mind-boggling.
Forget who shot JFK, forget about Roswell or Area 54 what we want to know is what will happen to Roland and his ka-tet and who will make the journey. And what happened to the rest of Rolandís friends. What, Why, Who, When and how!
Reviewed by: Daniel (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Thu, 25 Jul 2002 08:03:07)
Could've been a stand-alone book
Even though this is not my absolute favorite of the Dark Tower books, I still think it has a truly engaging story and great characters. It doesn't really advance the plot of the overall series that much but I think that the "prequel" part of the book would have been better served as a stand-alone novel published to the side, connected to the series, but not actually part of it. And I also think that even if there are never going to be any Dark Tower movies, there could at least be a film based on the "prequel" part of this book. How many SK fanatics doubt that there is certainly a chance for brilliance in that proposal -- not to mention a few Oscar nods if Frank Darabont is involved.
Reviewed by: shrike5776 (email@example.com) (Sat, 15 Jun 2002 14:28:37)
First Time Reader of DT gives opinion
Now that I've completed the 4 published books from the Dark Tower series I feel compelled to comment. I can honestly say I've never read anything as unusual or as dark as the Dark Tower series. I have mixed feelings regarding the books, but also the characters. Obviously, I feel Roland is *the* central character, and if he should fall in his quest for the Tower, the series will suffer. I think Eddie is lukewarm at best, sometimes I'd like to tell him to shut up (that goes for Susannah too). Jake is intriguing, but he seems to be way too smart for a kid.
When Rhea is telling the ka-tet to give up the quest for the tower, and Eddie replies, I feel like saying, why should he be the one to respond? Roland is the central figure of the ka-tet, the boss, the leader, and probably the only one who really knows what the hell is going on.
I feel that on an emotional level, Wizard and Glass is probably the best, the tragic story of Roland and Susan Delgado grips you. Rhea reminds me of this neighbor I have, so it was easy to not like that character. But, the Wizard of Oz scenario at the end left me saying 'what was that all about?'
It's a great series, and I think I will have to re-read it in order to truly understand it all. I found out that I've missed some of the details (can't be helped, I read when I can, and I have 2 kids, the house is often chaotic), but that goes with trying to digest a series of books like DT.
Well that's my nickel's worth...sorry for being chatty. To sum it all up, I'd recommend to anyone to read the DT series, but be prepared...
Reviewed by: Artis Shepherd (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Sat, 25 May 2002 09:15:43)
What is King doing?
This is ridiculous. King has written the corniest, most pathetic characters into this book and series. Aside from explaining Roland's past, King has basically filled his last two books in this series with some terrible lines, dialogue, etc. especially between the heroin addict and the girl in the wheelchair. These two characters falling in love and getting married is something that's not supposed to happen in a King book. The story and the gunslinger himself are supposed to be tales of morbidity, loneliness and unhappiness. This sounds more like a children's fairy tale. Yes, I know there are some bad things that are going to come out of the marriage between the two characters, but the idea just doesn't seem right. The corny one-liners from all of the characters just has to stop for this story to maintain a sense of decency. Even the gunslinger himself is turning into a modern-world type of character. Hopefully, all these superfluous characters will be sacrificed soon and King can get back to telling the real story like he did in the first book, DT I - The Gunslinger. Am I the only one who thinks King has done a terrible job in these last couple books, especially DT IV?
Reviewed by: Matt (email@example.com) (Wed, 5 Sep 2001 22:15:59)
Wizard and Glass is truly the most magnificent flashback ever written. King finally answers his reader's questions about Roland's past, but he also leaves so many things untold. For instance, He doesn't explain what happened to Cuthbert or Alain. He has stated that Alain died under Roland and Cuthbert's own blazing guns, but for what reason? Also, the fact that Roland killed his own mother was the most shocking (and unpredictable incident) that I have ever found in a novel. It truly shows a glimpse of some of the pains that Roland has indured along his journey. When it comes to King's story telling, I'm speechless.
The love story found in Wizard and Glass is excellent. It is a difficult subject to write own (thus, King's own difficulty in completing the novel), and I was truly surprised, not to mention emotionally quelched, by King's imagery and tale-telling ability. I can't even begin to imagine what the next book will reveal. Especially with the new information being added to the saga without a dark tower novel.
Finally, I can't imagine how the next 2 years will be without the story being continued. The length between novels is killing me, but hey, it is ka, and ka is the force behind everything. Ka like the wind, is how Susan put it, and this is the only way to describe it.
Reviewed by: Edward Howarth (firstname.lastname@example.org) (Sat, 25 Aug 2001 05:19:02)
Masterpiece : Read at your own peril
I think the thing that appealed to me about the book is that we at last learn something about Roland's past. We discover that he once knew how to love, and why he is now a cold, calculating gunslinger. The characters are memorable, the plot unforgettable and the storytelling flawless. I laughed at the part where Jonas' men and Roland's gang find themselves with each other's lives in their hands during the scene in the tavern. The most exciting part, I think, is when Roland, Cuthbert and Alain surprise Jonas' men from behind and start killing them. And, to finish with, I think that the scene where Susan is burned is one of the most disturbingly well written pieces that I have ever read. It really sent a chill down my spine! I believe that Wizard and Glass is a masterpiece - a great stand-alone novel and the most moving and exciting book of The Dark Tower series so far.
Reviewed by: Shelly (Jumella1@aol.com) (Sun, 29 Jul 2001 23:12:26)
Good, but too long
The Dark Tower story is, as King explains himself in the Afterword, his masterwork that not just dwarfs but contains all his other works, in no small part because it was conceived in his amazingly fertile mind long before any of the others. Of late, his works have become more overtly tied into the DT world, and while some might object, I do not. Although none of the Dark Tower books occupy either the Best King Book or Favorite King Book (two different things a distinction that I hope King himself would appreciate) in my opinion -- the slots belong to The Shining and Salem's Lot, respectively--they occupy a special place on the literary bookshelf in my home and in the figurative bookshelf in my mind. I look forward to every King book, but none so much as the next installment of the Adventures of Roland. In that, I know I am not alone.
Onto the book itself. It is, as my header suggests, much too long. It could have been shortened by half, if not more. Much of this length is due to the generally pointless and tedious thoughts of the backstory characters. Susan and Roland's love story is affecting enough, but drags on for what seems an eternity. Rhea of the Coos provides some welcome periodic distraction with her sheer, unadulterated evil, although the likewise evil Eldred Jonas seems to slow things down even further. While the backstory does help explain some things, was it necessary to go into it at such length? What drew me to the books in the first place was Roland's quest for the Tower, which is barely advanced at all in this installment. Not to mention, since I already knew Susan's fate, I felt no dread during the seemingly endless build up to the actual occurrence. I hope that in his next DT book, King forgoes this backstory stuff. It's much better in small doses, Steve-O.
Reviewed by: Andrea (email@example.com) (Fri, 15 June 2001 12:22:23)
Wizard and Glass
This book wasn't as good as the other ones in the series but it did clear up some of the questions that I had about Roland's life before we met him in the first book... some parts of the book were a little dry but as you got further in the book things just got better and better... not my favorite book in the series but it is a great book to read nontheless.
Reviewed by: Francis (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Two sided Gunslinger
In Wizard and Glass, the fourth book in the Dark Tower series, we see the side of Roland that none would expect. Who would have guessed that a man who was savagely beaten as a boy to become a member of an elite fighting force would still have the very basic human emotions that we ourselves take for granted. I like to compare Roland to Darth Vader. A very well known villian in the Star Wars movies, but no matter how evil or twisted he may be, there was still a hint of the goodness which he thrived on in his younger years as a jedi knight. Roland's infatuation could be attributed to the young years and the fact that most teenagers are arrogant and mooney eyed lovers(I am one myself)but if you notice, Roland loves his new Ka-tet of Eddie, Susannah and Jake. He would give up his quest for the dark tower for them, something he couldn't do for Susan. This shows that Roland is just as human as the rest of us. One side note though, it seems as though Stephen King may be running out of ideas, or that he just feels a need to screw with our minds. This entire book is mainly to the character development of Roland, but there is a large green palace, and a wizard of Oz. This is what cost it that fifth bullet.
Reviewed by: Chi (email@example.com)
Brilliant soul-catcher of a tale
King's foray into magic culminates for now in unrefined, unadulterated beauty. Further along their way to Dark Tower, Roland and his companions encounter their hardest trials and tests so far. King gives us some history here and shows how their all destinies were inexorably linked and rushing towards this time. In a book that far surpasses five stars or anything I can say, King writes with pathos, sorrow, unparalleled style and a palpable love of the characters he has created. You can feel it, because you love them too. Wizard and Glass is the most magical story so far in the story and also the last for now. But it's not an end - its only the very beginning. You will not be able to stand the fact that there is as yet no sequel to this, and that there might never be. One thing is for sure though: Roland, Eddie and Suzanne will always be in your memory and your mind just waiting to finish, with their creator, their story. Marvellous.
Reviewed by: Frederic Flament (firstname.lastname@example.org)
At last we know
Yeah at last we know a bit more about Roland's youth. I had a bit of deception as for the escape from the evil-train Blaine, but this chapter of the Dark Tower adds another brick in King's world, tightening together many other worlds that came out of his tortured mind, by referencing them cleverly but clearly (reference to The Stand, The Talisman or Insomnia).
Reviewed by: Deirdre (Deeestew@aol.com)
There aren't words to describe this story
I have been an avid fan of S.K. for more years than I care to think about, I have read every scrap this man has written and am constantly astounded by his genius, but in this series I was so completely captivated by the whole thing that I don't know how to cope until DT5 is available. I have read the original 4 books several times and enjoy them more each time. Roland of Gilead (my ultimate hero) and the ka-tet, this includes Alain, Cuthbert, Susan and Sheemie, along with Susannah, Eddie, Jake and Oy are all so well defined I feel that you live their experiences with them. Even if you do not care for S.K.'s 'normal' type of story give this series a go, you might even enjoy it. The man's a genius.
Reviewed by: Joshua Wanisko (JugularJosh@hotmail.com)
Wizard and Glass, the abridged version
Wizard and Glass, the abridged version: Our heroes and their dog are hanging out inside Blaine. Eddie tells Blaine some jokes. Blaine dies. They get were they were going, but the reader has already lost interest. There's a lot of The Stand references. Roland tells a long boring story that is impossible to follow or care about. They wind up in Oz. The Tick Tock man shows up for about five seconds. "Grr...I'm alive. Okay, I guess I'm dead again." Five seconds isn't long enough to salvage this book. Roland goes on vacation for another seven years.
To put it bluntly, I can only find two things I liked about this book at all. The first was the description of the devestation of Blaine's passage, the second was all the way in the end, when Flagg says "Nothing but misfires against me", and Roland thwarts him by grabbing Jake's gun. I wanted to like it, I really did. I have been a huge Dark Tower fan since the original release of Drawing and the negative review above reflects the tremendous feelings of betrayal I felt after waiting so long for what I thought would be a worthy successor to the first three books, and having my expectations rather harshly juxtaposed with reality. I'm not going to review the other works in the series, but they would all be at least fours (4 Bullets). King can do better than this and Roland deserves better.
Reviewed by: Derek (email@example.com)
They just keep getting better...
They just keep getting better. After reading The Waste Lands, I thought that King had peeked for sure, but he managed to make a great follow-up. The only fault with Wizard and Glass was the fact that the momentum from The Waste Lands didn't shift over very well, but King was able to pick it back up again. Some say it's too slow, but I say it doesn't matter how slow it is as long as it gives us some info on Roland's past. I just hope King doesn't lose momentum again.
Reviewed by: (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The Magic of Stephen King Continues
I started reading the Dark Tower series about 10 years ago and was taken immediately with the dark and mysterious character of Roland. Over the course of the series have enjoyed King's glimpses into Roland's world and his insights into our's. With the Dark Tower series, King is at the top of his game. He continues to enthrall me with Wizard and Glass. We learn more about Roland and his oft referred friends Alain and Cuthbert. We even find our hero Roland in love. King demonstrates that he is a master story teller not only in horror but action and romance as well. He also threads his other works into the story suggesting that all his works are in some way connected. It is a joy to read and search for connections to other King works. I cannot wait for the next installment of the Dark Tower. King is truly royalty in his craft. If you haven't already, pick up the Dark Tower series and enter the world of Roland of Gilead, the gunslinger. You will not be disappointed.
Reviewed by: Jeff Meyer (email@example.com)
Are you kidding?! Roland has developed from a confusing, vague, one-dimensional character in The Gunslinger to a someone with a life, a purpose. He is no longer just chasing the man in black. The first book seemed written almost stream-of-consciousness. However, in this book, the level of detail, volume of events, and overall idea are indicative of TRUE storytelling. King obviously loves his work, and we love the little ties throughout this story linking what he sees in his mind to what we see with our eyes. I will be drooling expectantly until the release of Part V!
Reviewed by: Aimee Cross (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I read the Wizard and Glass, without reading the first three. Being a long time Stephen King/horror fan who turned to fantasy, I was drawn to the most recent installment, Wizard and Glass. It has what I like most in a book, feeling and a love story with a fantasy style atmosphere. I really felt the loss of Roland as he told his tale. I still haven't gone back and read the first three, and I'm not sure I will. This is the way I want to think of the characters, and this is an exceptional book.
Reviewed by: Gerrod Walker (email@example.com)
Best yet in the Tower Series
This book is a complete disappointment only in the fact that King chooses to nearly starve to death those faithful readers that eagerly await the next and final book in this never-ending saga. Wizard and glass is born from within the deep recesses of King's dark mind where Roland roams in a spectacular alternate world. Loved it.
Reviewed by: Kate Solcberg (WoodysBaby@email.msn.com)
The Dark Tower series can't possibly to read fast enough. I found myself unable to put Wizard and Glass down. And when it became impossible to read any further, I found myself anxiously waiting my chance to pick this book up again. To continue reading the story of Roland's ka-tet and their search for The Dark Tower along the path of the beam, has for lack of a better word become my obsession. 'Bird and Bear and Hare and Fish, Give my Love her fondest wish.' My wish is the publishing of the next book.
Reviewed by: Shannon (Shannon5859@aol.com)
One of King's best yet!
After reading this book, I am left dying to read what happens next. King goes ahead to explain how Roland became a gunslinger and some of his adventures as a teenager. And to my amazement, he throws in a love story with some great twists tied in. But dont think that's all there is, some parts got me so spooked that I couldnt be in a dark room alone! This book was definitely a hard one to put down because there was so much suspense throughout it. King also uses reference to The Wizard of Oz, and it works very well. If you're a fan of Stephen King, this is not one you should pass up! I'm sure that this book will also get some new readers to King's work.
Reviewed by: Tommy Reed (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Start Slow but Well Worth It
The book started slowly and I found myself losing interest near the middle. The story pics up about two thirds of the way in and finishes with an avalanche of an ending. I read the last 200 pages without getting up. Well worth it and I can't wait to see what part 5 has in store for me. Bravo Mr. King.
Reviewed by: AxlGnr99@aol.com
Brilliant but overlong
Be warned: Wizard and Glass is the single slowest-moving novel Stephen King has ever written. While the previous three Dark Tower books enthralled me, this one fell slightly short. Roland's story of Susan is masterful storytelling, but the small section of Roland and his companions that ends the novel doesn't make much sense. However, the story Roland tells (which takes up 500+ pages) is more than enough to keep the reader going. Like it or not, when it comes to visual imagery and characterization, Stephen still is 'The King,' even though Wizard and Glass might be long winded.