I'm reading Duma Key and am picking up lots of themes from other books. For example, one man who can't sleep says he feels like he's floating above himself like a balloon. This is an obvious ref to insomnia. I've read about links between books with randalf flagg and other baddies with `RF` initials. I would like to know more about these themes. Does anyone know if anyone's written anything i can read up on? It's something I'm interested in because I'm going back and re-reading the old SK's.
You mean the lobstrosities and Roland Remus can't have him, he's mine! don't you. Okay, there's a lot more to it when you get to the third one
As a weird kind of introduction to the Dark Tower, you could try The Wind Through The Keyhole, which will put you in the middle of the action but will not give away a great deal if you choose to then go back and read them all properly. I think SK described it as Dark Tower 4.5 because it fits in-between books four and five but isn't a proper part of the series that you would have to read.
Otherwise, you could try The Eyes of The Dragon, which SK wrote for his daughter when she was thirteen, and is a bit fairytale/medieval but gives you the first introduction to Randall Flagg.
Or, if you absolutely had to, you could read Wizard and Glass first, which will be a bit more spoiler-like as it's the fourth of the seven DT books bait mostly contains backstory from Roland's teenage years.
Yes, people can definitely dismiss King without really knowing what he's done. My mum was all 'ugh, no, I don't do horror' and nearly fell off her chair when I pointed out that The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile are both SK
I hated Wind Through The Keyhole - waste of paper imho. I love Eddie's naked gunfight in book 2 and from there in, I think it's great. I agree that book one is hard work and not v exciting, but you do need it for the back story and especially for the Roland/Jake relationship. Wizard and Glass is lots and lots of back story and again, I could live without most of that. For me, it's the 'gang of five' stuff that's so gripping, and the relationships (which is what SK does best).
I loved the Dark Tower series, I loved that it was just so familiar, that a lot of characters i had previously met (yes , they do feel that real) were in the books. it all seems to make sense when you read the dark tower books
I read him first Remus and I'm not just claiming Roland, there's a basket with Oy's name on it as well
I know WTTK and W&G are both backstory (or perhaps aside-story might be a better description for WTTK) but they are also the least fantasy I think and give away the least in the way of spoilers, so for someone who hates fantasy but wants to try the DT series might ease their way in with them and then go back to the beginning with a more open mind to the rest of the books.
Did anyone look at the Dark Score Stories website yet? It really is interesting.
Yes i def read sk novels in my teens on face value. Which is ok as they are mostly stand alone horrors. But now i'm older i'm more interested to re read them as i have started to notice deeper threads and themes which seem to weave through them. Just from memory ( 15 years ago!) i can remember theres often a typical setting with people in ordinary lives. But an undercurrent of evil presences. Like in the shining and IT. I gues, again from memory, insomnia makes the guy more aware of the parallel universes and forces working alongside us. If the dt books are set in such s parallel universe, maybe insomnia was a prequal to them. Set in our world but beginning to introduce the idea of other worlds and creatures living alongside us. I remember it is the massivest, thickest book i've ever read. That certainly stuck in my mind!
But I read The Gunslinger as a teenager in about 1985 so I'm sure that a) I am much older than you and b) I saw Roland first!
Boobs - if you google the Guardian and re-reading Stephen King, there's a guy doing just that. I think generally it's fine but he had a pretty dreadful druggie period in which he produced 'works' (or travesties) such as The Tommyknockers and Needful Things, which (imvho) are beyond dreadful. Also, I'd read the DT series in one chunk rather than as published, personally.
This is one of the reasons I love SK - I really enjoy reading his books and spotting the threads of other stories in there.
Remus, totally agree about his drug/alcohol period, I really hated Needful Things. It just seemed so distasteful in a way.
The other books I haven't reread loads of times are Dolores Claiborne (ok but not outstanding), Gerald's Game (good story/idea but it just really creeps me out!), Desperation/The Regulators (don't know why, they just never appealed), some of his latest ones like Lisey's Story I couldn't get on with and Duma Key was ok but it took a while to get into.
I've not read anything recent really, I started The Dome and didn't finish it, can't really remember why, I think I had a baby and got distracted What other recent stuff would people recommend? I bought The Cell and hated it after one chapter. Also hated Dreamscapes (?) and ended up buying it twice as it had a different cover
Whispers, have you read duma key? Really enjoying it. I didn't find it hard to get into at all. But, and its a big but for me, it is long. I'm a bit adhd and i like a fast exciring read then move on to the next. Duma needs some sticking with.
I always wondered if the Buick went to Booya Moon though.
They are probably all Mid-world really, but they seem to be the same part of it, if that makes sense. They had that same eeriness about them. But then when I read Under The Dome I wondered if the Buick and it's driver were really more connected to that story.
I had to read Lisey three times before I liked it.
I didn't like Bag of Bones the first time but I like it now. It's not my favourite but I like it. And that link I posted further up is worth a look at if you haven't seen it already.
Insomnia I gave up on the first time I started it, then read it through the night a few months later and loved every word.
I didn't like Buick 8 and have never re-read it I love Insomnia and have read it 3 times Re-reading SK is almoast as good as reading it for the first time In fact, you have to re-read them as you miss so much the first time around
I finished 'Joyland' on the day it came out. It is a fast, enjoyable read full of nostalgia for the 70's.
I find SK's books to be about love, not horror in the main. Many of them deal with how to be a man or a Father and about loss (The Shining; Cujo; Pet Sematary; Misery; Carrie; Dead Zone) There is nostalgia and yearning for a childhood and adolescence long gone plus a nostalgia for an America, long long gone too.
The main character in The Dead Zone called John Smith and the murderer he 'saw' George Bannerman are mentioned in several other books as most of the books are set in small towns in the state of Maine. They form part of a fictional regional history...