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DT1: Gunslinger

 
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Zarathustra
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2015 1:38 pm    Post subject: DT1: Gunslinger Reply with quote

So I've started my journey. I'm a little worried that I've got the "wrong" edition of Gunslinger. Cail mentioned that King updated the references and made it more consistent with later DT books. I'm worried because there are things that just don't make sense, and I imagine those were the things King 'corrected.'

For instance, in the town of Tull, the piano player is playing Hey Jude. But then when the Gunslinger meets the boy, Jake, who describes a modern American city while hypnotized, the Gunslinger thinks that no such city could have ever existed. How can he know pop culture references from a civilization that he doesn't believe ever existed?

He has to be on earth. He can see Polaris and Mars in the night sky! So what gives? Is this an alternate earth? Do pop songs cross the dimensions just like little boys?

If this is spoiler territory, don't tell me. But if these are mistakes that King later corrects, let me know if I need to get the updated version of DT1.
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2015 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's been awhile since I took my own journey, and I have not reread since then, but if I recall correctly I think the confusion you are experiencing is to be expected. I don't think I can say anymore without spoilering, but I am hopeful if I am wrong someone more familiar with the series will let you know.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2015 1:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yup, just go with it.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2015 6:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, that's not actually stuff he "corrected" anyway. Stick with that version and read it as written, not as ret-conned.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 08, 2015 12:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cool, thanks all.

I'm almost done. Such a short book. The story is so simple and the writing so restrained. This is very different for King.
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 09, 2015 1:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Keep in mind that the first chapter was originally written as a novella for The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, and was published in 1978. Four other stories were also published in F&SF between then and November of 1981, but the novel itself wasn't finished and published until 1982. His writing has changed a lot since then, especially after his life-threatening accident.

(I still have those original F&SF issues somewhere with my parents stuff.)
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 09, 2015 6:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarathustra wrote:
Cool, thanks all.

I'm almost done. Such a short book. The story is so simple and the writing so restrained. This is very different for King.


One of my favourites. I just love Roland.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 09, 2015 6:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

someone from here sent me the entire collection. ashamed to say I do not remember who it was. take credit someone.

anyway Julie found a two set concordance to the Dark Tower at Half Price Books.



invaluable resource.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 13, 2015 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, it took longer than I expected. I got bored. This is a mediocre book with mediocre characters, almost nonexistent story, and an ending that's laugh-out-loud bad. It relies upon the ubiquitous King technique of telling you ahead of time the Big Moment, creating tension that otherwise wouldn't be there if he didn't give away his own story. [In this case, sacrificing the kid, Jake.]

I have a bad feeling about this ... Laughing

Anyway, I assume the other books are better, and I'm looking forward to seeing how all this connects. I realize this is just a short introduction, like
The Real Story. I do like its tone and weird mix of alien/familiar. It has its own stark beauty, in the contrasts between the desert and the mountains. One can certainly glimpse a grand scheme on the horizon.
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 13, 2015 11:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now that I'm done with this one, I decided to look it up on Wikipedia. They had this (and much more) about the expanded/revised edition:
Quote:

In general, the world the gunslinger walked through in the original text was a run-down version of our own - the text mentions England, the star Polaris, Mars, Jesus and other biblical figures, Easter, All-Saint's Eve (Halloween), and Greek and Egyptian Gods. In the revision, most of these references were removed to make Roland's world only vaguely like our own.
That would answer my question in the OP. I like that a lot better, actually. I think I'll try the expanded edition at some point.

I never did notice the connection between this one and Bag of Bones, as Avatar's chart indicated.
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2015 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Only read Bag of Bones once, and hated it, so can't remember if I ever picked up on what the connection was supposed to be.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2015 5:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey, I forgot, DT1 was the first Stephen King book I ever read. Very Happy

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2015 10:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it was my first King novel, too. 25 or 30 years ago.
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2015 6:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

25 years ago for me. Very Happy

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 03, 2016 6:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I read DT1 a couple of years ago, and had the same reaction as Zarathustra. I was surprised at how shallow and un-psychological it was. I have hemmed and hawed about continuing the series ever since. I prefer the King that wrote 11/22/63 or even The Stand, although I don't get the rapey stuff because it adds nothing to the story. Guess I'll check out the DT2 forum and see if it gets better.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2016 5:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's not shallow, it's epic. Very Happy

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd say the whole series is epic, but the very short first book doesn't qualify as epic just yet.
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Meaning is created internally by each individual in each specific life: any attempt at *meaning* which relies on some kind of external superstructure (God, Satan, the Creator, the Worm, whatever) for its substance misses the point (I mean the point of my story). -SRD

Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 07, 2016 4:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, fair enough on that score. But I found the first book very intriguing. For me it definitely hinted at the the size of the world behind it.

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