As usual with a King book, you can't put it down once you start. I've read the entire Dark Tower series and this is probably the weakest of the bunch. However, I always enjoy interesting plot devices and this has one of the most unusual King has ever used. I don't think it spoils anything to point it out, but if you want, you can skip to the next paragraph........The book actually tells three stories one inside of another inside of another.
I've gotten used to him, but I really don't care much for King as a narrator, especially since for many of his books he gets some of the best in the business. He has a flat voice and some mildly annoying speech mannerisms (e.g. he swallows his "L's").
Mr. King sets his intricately woven tale of Mid-World in a time described as following the fourth volume of the Dark Tower series. Contrary to what many of the reviews here have stated, I think Mr. King does an admirable job of reading his book. In particular, his rendition of the chillingly evil Covenant Man is excellent, and had me nervously looking over my shoulder in broad daylight. I doubt even Mr. Guidall could have done a better voice for this character. This story can stand alone, but it's also completely satisfying as a wonderful addition to the saga.
I have to admit that I was a bit unsure about this book. As much as people have mixed feelings about the Dark Tower series (particularly the end), I enjoyed the whole of it and wasn't sure about a return trip.
I shouldn't have worried. Not only was it comfortable to return to the familiar characters (aided no doubt by the reading done by Stephen King himself), the stories added color and depth to the world of the gunslinger, making it feel less like a central hub in the universe according to King and more like a world of it's own with lore and characters all it's own.
Either as a return to an old haunt or an introduction to the world of the Dark Tower, this book is worth a listen or two and is likely one you'll return to.
An avid sci-fi/fantasy reader for over 30 years.
I first began reading about Roland in 1986 when a customer at a bookstore where I worked was kind enough to loan me her hardcover. I read the opening couple of lines and I was hooked. It set up the situation perfectly. Unfortunately, this book doesn't really show much of the Roland I've grown to know over more than 25 years.
I actually listened to the first two books in the series on audio cassettes as narrated by King. Unfortunately, I've not been able to track them down digitally anywhere so I'll end up converting them, but his narration had more life in the '80's.
Yes, they're clear that The Wind Through the Keyhole is a story within a story within a story. It didn't seem so clear to me, however, that it has only a tenuous connection to the rest of the series. The best way that I can sum it up is that it's a fine story on it's own, but not a good Dark Tower story.
Master story telling that builds layers and layers of suspense, never losing the reader in the journey.
After listening to the rest of the series read by two incredible performers, I was surprised that I still liked hearing the author's interpretation of his own work. He caught the rhythm of his prose nicely and had a great voice for his "tax collector."
Book four of the Dark Tower series was my favorite, so hearing more of how Roland came to be the Gunslinger was for me very enjoyable
It took some time for me to adjust to these being read by the author, George Guidall is a really tough act to follow, a couple of hours in it was no longer standing out.
This book is a story within a story within a story! Yet it is written so well that you are never left wondering which story you are listening to!
It is sometimes difficult to listen to the author reading his or her own works. They are writers, after all, not performers! :) On the other hand, you get to hear the story from the source, rather than a performer's interpretation of the "sound" and the "mood" of the story and its characters.
After reading all 7 books and then re-reading them before this story was released, it was great to be reaquainted with Eddie, Jake and Susanna again!
I might need to go back and re-read this series again, inserting this book in between Books 4 & 5 where it was intended! I really enjoyed this story. I've followed Roland and his journey to the Dark Tower since I was 9 years old and stole the book from my brother. Here we are almost 35 years later and Roland is still a part of my life. I wonder if there will be another.....
Revisiting and learning more about an old friend, Roland of Gillead. And I always love it when King reads his own works, he is a great story teller.
I was SO excited to hear that Mr. King had written another chapter in The Dark Tower series (you can arrange this one in your library as book number 4.5) and was not disappointed.
It tells a story inside another story inside another story so it doesn't add much to journey of Roland, Jake, Eddie & Suzanna, but gives you more of Roland's background and life before his journey to the tower really began..
The only thing I missed were the previous narrators of the other books (George Guidall & Frank Muller) but Mr. King did a good job.. I didn't notice after about 20 minutes in so it certainly didn't ruin the experience for me..
EVERYTHING about it was fantastic... If you love The Dark Tower, GET IT...
I loved the Story about Tim and his adventure. I wish more of the book was about that adventure and maybe a little less about how he got there. It was a nice break from the normal tower adventure and I always love hearing about Roland's past.
This book reminded me of a mix between Wizard and Glass and The Legend of King Arthur. The plot rapidly takes the reader into Roland's past, as a young gunslinger. Unexpectedly, the book also turns into a trifecta of tales when one story enters another, and then another within those. The transitions were very good and fluid. I was never confused into thinking I had somehow fell into the confusing dream world of Inception.
I have read about half of King's books and will continue to read them all.
I was very excited when I heard about the new dark tower book as a King fan and Dark Tower nut. After I was done with the last Dark Tower, I felt empty and sad that the journey was over. As soon as I heard Rolands voice again, I had a tremor shoot up my spine. It was good to hear him again.
The only critisim I have about this book was the voice acting. Sorry Stephen... stick to the writing. I often listen in my car or on my phone and the volume was so low I couldn't hear with my windows down. When I could hear I couldnt pick out the voices between the four gunslingers. This was only confusing for about a chapter or two and I eventually got used to it.