The Waste Lands pdf
About the book:
The Waste Lands book
Author: Stephen King
Publisher: Signet; Revised edition
Publish date: September 2, 2003
Pages: 590 eBook pages can be different
Genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror
Book 3 of the Dark Tower series continues the pursuit defined in the 1st book (The Gunslinger) with the roving companions introduced in the 2nd book (The Drawing of the Three).
This book is basically a set of adventure episodes: an encounter with a 70 foot tall bio-mechanical bear (Shardik), artifact of a past age, a weird fight with a demon, a visit to a dying residential village, an abduction and running combat in a ghost town city, and finally a whimsical trip on a dangerous mono-rail train. Each episode provides a little more understanding of the Roland’s fantastical world, both past and present. By the end of this book, a fairly clear picture of this world develops, from its evident high technology past, to its current sadly depreciated state, to some of the basis behind why certain things work the way they do in this world. The book is very action oriented; there is very little reflection on outstanding philosophical themes here, and ongoing character development of the main characters is fairly insignificant.
There is a fine variant on the old time-travel absurdity. In The Gunslinger, the boy Jake is forfeited to Roland’s fortitude to catch the ‘man in black’. In this story, we find Jake alive and fine and still living in (our) New York, due to an action by Roland in The Drawing of the Three that caused the former history to never occur. But both Roland and Jake have recollections of the ‘other’ past, and this dichotomy is gradually driving both to the verge of insanity. The tenacity of this problem involves that Jake be brought back to Roland’s world, and how this is accomplished forms the major portion of one of the ‘episodes’.
At several points throughout this book, King makes references to other renowned science-fiction and fantasy authors and their creations (and some of his own), from Richard Adams (Shardik and Watership Down) to Isaac Asimov’s ‘positronic’ brains of his robot stories, to J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit with its riddling playoffs. For those who have read these novels, these references provide an enhanced view of this world and how it works, but I am not sure how well some of this plays with readers who haven’t read these other works.
Overall, this book is really a page-turner, and does a decent job of engaging the reader’s interest in the doom of the main characters and the complete resolution of the quest. The conclusion of this book is a cliff-hanger, like the film serials of old, and for this reason I don’t recommend you start this book unless you have a copy of book 4, Wizard & Glass, nearby, as you will certainly want to instantly find out the resolution to the end situation here.
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