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Wizard and Glass (Dark Tower (Pb)) Library Binding – 7 Oct 2003

4.4 out of 5 stars 263 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Library Binding: 718 pages
  • Publisher: Turtleback Books; Turtleback School & Library ed. edition (7 Oct. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1417637846
  • ISBN-13: 978-1417637843
  • Product Dimensions: 4.4 x 10.8 x 17.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (263 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,435,664 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

Wizard and Glass, the fourth episode in King's white-hot Dark Tower series, is a sci-fi/fantasy novel that contains a post-apocalyptic Western love story twice as long. It begins with the series' star, world-weary Roland, and his world-hopping posse (an ex-junkie, a child, a plucky woman in a wheelchair, and a talking dog-like pet named Oy the Bumbler) trapped aboard a runaway train. The train is a psychotic multiple personality that intends to commit suicide with them at 800 m.p.h.--unless Roland and pals can outwit it in a riddling contest. It's a great race, for the mind and pulse. Films should be this good. Then comes a 567- page flashback about Roland at age 14. It's a well-marbled but meaty tale. Roland and two teenage friends must rescue his first love from the dirty old drooling mayor of a post-apocalyptic cowboy town, thwart a civil war by blowing up oil tanks, and seize an all-seeing crystal ball from Rhea, a vampire witch. The love scenes are startlingly prominent and earthier than most romance novels (they kiss until blood trickles from her lip).

After an epic battle ending in a box canyon to end all box canyons, we're back with grizzled, grown-up Roland and the train-wreck survivors in a parallel world: Kansas in 1986, after a plague. The finale is a weird fantasy takeoff on The Wizard of Oz Some readers will feel that the latest novel in King's most ambitious series has too many pages--almost 800--but few will deny it's a page-turner. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

'King at his most ebullient. He's at his best here - as a resourceful explorer of humanity's shadow side, as a storyteller who can set pages on fire' PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

'King's most personal, most engaging work' SUNDAY EXPRESS

'Grim, funny and superbly energetic, it's King at his best' MAIL ON SUNDAY --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
As a recent review said, this really is the pinnacle of the series. Unlike that person and many others, I wouldn't quite say it's downhill from here as personally I loved the way the series ended. But then that's another book, another day and another review.

Wizard and Glass is mostly set in the past, telling a story of Roland's days before his quest. After the cliff-hanger is resolved, Roland decides it's about time he told them more about the beginnings of his quest and as the day ends, time slows as he's able to tell his whole story in one "night". Once the tale is told they have an interesting confrontation with the Man in Black and then head off again along the beam. What's amazing about this book however is the tale in between. The rest are really book-ends. At the start, the conflict had to be resolved and at the end we had to be brought back onto their quest, back to the present.

Some people criticise spending a whole book in the past, but then, by now don't they care a lot about Roland? I certainly did and I wanted to know more about him. I admit I felt daunted by the prospect of such a long tale, but when it contains the best storytelling in the series that soon fades. This has drama, emotion, character development and an intriguing plot. It's a fully resolved and extremely well-told tale. The ending brought tears to my eyes, and any tale that can do that can't be anything but well-told.

We also get to find out a bit more about Alain and Cuthbert, which is really important in understanding who Roland is. And we get to see Roland, more or less at his best. The plan of three gunslingers being carried out with skill and precision, though not perfectly, for nothing ever goes perfectly.

My own words aren't really adequate to describe how good this book is, so I'll leave it there, just adding that if you're thinking of reading these books then you're in for a treat when you get to the start of Wizard and Glass.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A friend once told me that this book was "kind of meh", and so I'd been dreading it since that moment. After the magnificence of the first three, I really didn't want to slow down (or go backwards, for that matter). But wow, am I glad I did! The first 10% or so completes the story from book three and then funnels into a campfire tale of Roland's past. For the remainder of the book we're seeing the story through his own eyes; his fourteen-year-old self falling in love with somebody there is no future with. Despite its redneck, gunslinging, cowboy-esque feel, there was something that really stood out for me - tragedy. This story (or missing chapter from Roland's life, if you prefer) is so incredibly sad that I put the book down when I was done, feeling like I had been punched in the gut. This is by no means a bad thing! King proves once again that he is a master of his craft, and has left me craving more.
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Format: Paperback
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 its 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.
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Format: Paperback
If you are a fan of the previous three books then the anticipation for this installment must have been eagarly anticipated. I found this book exceptional, eventhough the journey to the tower does not advance that much (as critics of the book have clearly stated!), the story of Susan and Roland is beatifully told and in addition it expands on chracters mentioned previously, including my personal favorite Cuthbert. The ending is both tragic and quite surprising not to mention moving, i didn't think King could pull off a love story but he proved me wrong in a big way. The good news for Dark tower fans is that the next three installments will be out in fairly quick sucession which will make a change from the gaps between the previous books.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I concur with others who have identified this as the 'best' of the series, although imo, all are vital parts of the whole.
All I wish to add to other reviews I've read, is a word concerning the Kindle editions vs. print. Having owned the full set in print for many-a, I argued with myself, after re-reading The Gunslinger in the revised Kindle edn, as to whether I needed to re-purchase them all as e-books. But when starting on my print edition of each book, especially this one, which even though not in hardback, is huge, I soon remembered why I so love my Kindle Paperwhite. Big print tomes are unwieldy, scarcely portable, and worst of all, need a good light and the firm grip of two hands, when lying in bed. After the second or third time I tried to turn a paper page by tapping the right-hand margin, I gave in and bought the Kindle one.
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