In this long-awaited fifth novel in the saga, their path takes them to the outskirts of Calla Bryn Sturgis, a tranquil valley community of farmers and ranchers on Mid-World's borderlands. Beyond the town, the rocky ground rises toward the hulking darkness of Thunderclap, the source of a terrible affliction that is slowly stealing the community's soul. One of the town's residents is Pere Callahan, a ruined priest who, like Susannah, Eddie and Jake, passed through one of the portals that lead both into and out of Roland's world.
As Father Callahan tells the ka-tet the astonishing story of what happened following his shamed departure from Maine in 1977, his connection to the Dark Tower becomes clear, as does the danger facing a single red rose in a vacant lot off Second Avenue in midtown Manhattan. For Calla Bryn Sturgis, danger gathers in the east like a storm cloud. The Wolves of Thunderclap and their unspeakable depredation are coming. To resist them is to risk all, but these are odds the gunslingers are used to, and they can give the Calla folken both courage and cunning. Their guns, however, will not be enough.
Set in a world of extraordinary circumstances, filled with stunning visual imagery and unforgettable characters, The Dark Tower series is unlike anything you've ever heard. Here is Stephen King's most visionary piece of storytelling, a magical mix of fantasy and horror that may well be his crowning achievement. Don't miss the other volumes of Stephen King's The Dark Tower.
©2003 Stephen King; (P)2003 Simon & Schuster, Inc., All Rights Reserved, Audioworks is an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division, Simon & Schuster, Inc.
"Gonna be a humdinger of a fight! Fore and aft of the showdown, King stuffs the book with juice...One of the greatest cavalcades in popular fiction is back on track." (Booklist)
"The high suspense and extensive character development here...plus the enormity of King's ever-expanding universe, will surely keep his 'Constant Readers' in awe." (Publishers Weekly)
I really liked this book the most so far. The storyline was very surprising. Wizards and Glass hit on the type of action a true gunslinger and his 'tet' face. Same here in this story only it is Eddie instead of Cuthbert and Jake instead of Alain, and susannah of course, just being susannah. The action in the original Dark Tower book was just Roland at his purest killer instinct. I also liked all of the tie-ins to King's other stories in the past. I hope Song of Susannah is just as good.
Before Gunslinger, I had not read much King, but I had just listened to the great recording of Cormac McCarthy's No Country for Old Men, and was in the mood for some more of that Western voice, so I tried The Gunslinger, and I really found it to be excellent. I thought King had departed a bit from that voice in the subsequent novels, but at the same time, I came to really appreciate the characters. I wasn't sure how long that would last-- I had already spent a lot of time observing the inner lives of the four major characters, and I was considering skipping ahead to the seventh book. But in Wizard and Glass, and now Wolves of Calla, I'm really pulled in by the many unexpected points of view of this immense world. In Wolves I found the character of Callahan from 'Salem's Lot to be just as fascinating as the four main characters. I had become accustomed to Frank Muller's very distinct voices for the main characters, but George Guidall does an excellent job, particularly for the humbling and tragic narration of Callahan's story. I also would note that I was saddened but grateful to hear King's kind words regarding Frank Muller in the afterword, I have always enjoyed Muller's performances.
This is my favorite book of the Dark Tower series. So much is happening within the subplots of this book it is like getting a half dozen interrelated short stories in one title. While I believe that all the books are great (and should be read) I recommend this book as the one to buy if you are thinking about listening to the entire series. Yes, it helps to have read the 4 previous books for character developement, and a complete understanding of the storyline. I also believe that many of the interstories such as the Priest's tale, Granpere's tale, the fable of Gray Dick, and the main story involving the people of the Calla (including Andy messenger robot "many other functions") and the Wolves are unique to this book and do not require a further knowledge of the storyline in able to enjoy them. It has it's own beginning, middle, and end even though it leaves the series at a precarious crossroad. This book contains noble yet ruthless heros(gunslingers), vampires, robots, a fallen priest, betrayal, travel between our world and theirs, a mystical artifact of pure benevolent evil, and a final showdown worthy of any great adventure story. What else could you possibly ask for? Stephen King's true talent lies in his creation of imagery so powerful you will feel as though you are right in the middle of the action. This story made me want to pick up one of Roland's talismanic guns and join the fight.
If you're a fan of this series you already know this book is good. If you have not read/heard any of these pick up the first gunslinger book and get yourself hooked. Great book, but you need to read the previous ones to really get into it.
King introduces you to some old friends!
I recomend you read/listen to "Salems Lot" for some rewarding Tie ins before you read this one! You will not regrit it...
You'll want to read all these stories again, and again!
5 stars because I finished it and truely felt something.
Further development of deep, original characters.
Great action, great story, great reader.
After reading the can't-put-it-down fourth book in this series, Wizard and Glass, I was a bit disappointed by Wolves of the Calla. This may in part be because Salem's Lot is quite possibly my least favorite King book and characters from that book reappear in this one. Many of the plot twists seemed extraneous and didn't add much in terms of action or interest. I can only hope they play some sort of role later. And I hate it when the author of the book becomes part of the story, which he does in this and the following book; it's such a big no-no that only someone of King's stature could get this by his editors! On the plus side, the characters become better developed, and the folks of the Calla are a joy to meet. I only hope they reappear again "along the path of the beam." Can't wait for Dark Tower VII!
My wife and I are loving the Dark Tower Series and has become part of our daily commute to work. The Dark Tower V takes getting used to, as the narrator is new (King talks about this in the afterword) and not as good as the narrator from the first four books. But bear with it, took me two listens to the first CD to get used to the new voice, the narrator gets better with time.
This episode really puts you in the "Old West" Sci-Fi style. I loved the way he brought the "Salem's Lot" priest to life. There is no stopping King. I became attached to the towns people and felt their courage and was touched by their losses. Highly recommended!
The texture that Stephen king conceives in this novel is exceeded only by the aching bittersweetness of volume IV. He creates a delightful cross-section of the Calla Brin Sturges townsfolk, uncovering not evil in their hearts, but a complex mixture of frailty and fortitude. Meanwhile, Roland and his ka-tet struggle with the opposing forces of their quest for the Tower and their duty to help innocents in need. As a longtime Constant Reader, I found Father Callahan's return a welcome surprise. Western and Samurai movie buffs will enjoy the familiar themes. Dark Tower fans, celebrate!
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