I’m going to sum this one up for you very quickly, because I almost put this trilogy down again in the middle of this book. Similar to my assessment of The Gunslinger, I think that this book suffers from some dialogue that hasn’t aged well, and some of the themes that would have seemed ~deep~ in the late eighties/early nineties are now relatively old hat (heroin/mental illness).
The drawing is what Roland does – the pulling would be a better way to describe it. The magic of his world presents him with 3 doors along a terrible beach, and when he steps through them his consciousness passes into the mind of the person he needs to draw, or pull back, into his world to help him reach The Dark Tower. The first is a drug addict (“The Prisoner”) Eddie Dean, the second is a schizophrenic African-American woman named Odetta/Detta, depending on what personality is presenting, and the third is a surprise. He needs all three to reach the tower.
This book was very procedural. Character development is very deep here, which I suspect is necessary because once we launch into the remainder of the books we’re going to be plot driven the rest of the way. But gosh was it a slog, halfway through the Odetta/Detta story I was like, “do I really want to read these right now?” and then once he goes through the third door things pick up a LOT, racing to the end of the book. The last section is 100% awesome and I wish I had gotten to it sooner.
On to the next one, as they say. I’ll be on the lookout to see if reading Cliff Notes for the first two books will get you through the rest, because I honestly don’t know how anyone makes it this far and continues.
PS: A movie version of this and The Gunslinger would be SO AMAZING so I don’t know why they did what they did. Why not a movie series?