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Dark Tower: The Long Road Home Amazon Variant [Hardcover]

Marvel Comics
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct. 1 2008
It's the return of the best-selling comic book series, inspired by Stephen King's epic The Dark Tower! Gunslinger Roland Deschain has seen the death of his lover Susan Delgado. And the Big Coffin Hunters who burned her at the stake are now in pursuit of Roland and his ka-tet Cuthbert and Alain. The friends are forced to flee into the desert with the deadly posse in hot pursuit... .and Roland is in a coma! Don't miss the next chapter in the saga of the Gunslinger whose quest for the Dark Tower will shake the foundation of reality itself! Collects Dark Tower: The Long Road Home #1-5.
--This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A long road ahead Oct. 9 2008
By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
"The Gunslinger Born" explored the origins and early struggles of young Roland Deschain, as well as the loss of his first true love, Susan Delgado.

And Stephen King's "Dark Tower: The Long Road Home" picks up right after that, showing us more devastating events that shaped Roland Deschain into the gunslinger anti-hero we know and love. While the first part is rather slow, it has plenty of horrific moments and the haunting quality of a "world that has moved on."

A devastated Roland takes down Susan's charred body, as Alain and Bert argue about whether they should be stopping. But suddenly Roland fires at Maerlyn's Grapefruit -- which suddenly turns into a tentacled eyeball that jumps on Roland's face, and enthralls his very soul before they can peel it off. His ka-tet is chased by a bunch of local thugs, the last Big Coffin Hunter, and a ghastly pack of mutated wolves.

Nearby, a mentally challenged boy named Sheemie was seen climbing into old war machines, only to encounter a strange robot that is somehow still "alive."And inside Maerlyn's Grapefruit, Roland is slowly being driven mad in his own memories -- right before being dragged to the hellish citadel of the Crimson King, who reveals a ghastly secret to the young boy from long ago, which will change him forever...

"The Dark Tower: Long Road Home" isn't quite as gripping as its predecessor, "The Gunslinger Born" -- partly because it's a briefer story, and partly because it's simpler. It's a tribute to Stephen King's original story -- and to the hauntingly vivid artwork -- that it's still such an intense rollercoaster ride.
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By P. Hall
Format:Hardcover
The Long Road Home is the first run of the Dark Tower graphic novels that had to rely in a large part on inferences, as this part of the story was only alluded to in King's own series of novels. The result is an interesting story, but one that doesn't seem to follow exceptionally closely to the loosely placed bits about the young gunslingers' road home in King's original work.
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Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  56 reviews
31 of 37 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A long road ahead Oct. 7 2008
By E. A Solinas - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
"The Gunslinger Born" explored the origins and early struggles of young Roland Deschain, as well as the loss of his first true love, Susan Delgado.

And Stephen King's "Dark Tower: The Long Road Home" picks up right after that, showing us more devastating events that shaped Roland Deschain into the gunslinger anti-hero we know and love. While the first part is rather slow, it has plenty of horrific moments and the haunting quality of a "world that has moved on."

A devastated Roland takes down Susan's charred body, as Alain and Bert argue about whether they should be stopping. But suddenly Roland fires at Maerlyn's Grapefruit -- which suddenly turns into a tentacled eyeball that jumps on Roland's face, and enthralls his very soul before they can peel it off. His ka-tet is chased by a bunch of local thugs, the last Big Coffin Hunter, and a ghastly pack of mutated wolves.

Nearby, a mentally challenged boy named Sheemie was seen climbing into old war machines, only to encounter a strange robot that is somehow still "alive."And inside Maerlyn's Grapefruit, Roland is slowly being driven mad in his own memories -- right before being dragged to the hellish citadel of the Crimson King, who reveals a ghastly secret to the young boy from long ago, which will change him forever...

"The Dark Tower: Long Road Home" isn't quite as gripping as its predecessor, "The Gunslinger Born" -- partly because it's a briefer story, and partly because it's simpler. It's a tribute to Stephen King's original story -- and to the hauntingly vivid artwork -- that it's still such an intense rollercoaster ride.

After the heartbreaking first few pages, the plot speeds into a suitably confusing, desperate chase through a lonely wilderness, with plenty of gunshots and dying creatures. Things actually get rather gory as Roland's pals struggle over rickety bridges and across a red-tinged wilderness, since one of them almost gets his arm bitten off (and announces that he'd rather die than shoot left-handed forever. Hardcore, kid).

And since this is a world made by Stephen King, we have plenty of the eerie and the horrible -- Sheemie's confrontation with a baby-faced robot is just one example. King's rich, old-time narrative translates well into comic form, almost as if he were conversing with the readers ("But don't be laughing at Sheemie, I beg ya, because he's been through considerable trials").

And Jae Lee and Richard Isanove really bring this story to life -- they create a world split between bright bloody red mist and autumnal twilight, filled with shadowy faces, barren lands, and ghastly pursuers. And inside the Grapefruit, we get a full cornucopia of horrors, with Roland defiantly trying to keep his sanity and soul intact in a dusty, hazy landscape full of withered trees, tragic future selves, evil crows, lumpy castles, and the vaguely spidery King with his hellish magic and his suitably evil offers to Roland.

"The Gunslinger Born" introduced Roland as a boy, but "The Long Road Home" has undeniably made him a man. He has the guts and integrity to snarl not just at Marte but at the King himself. And after being in Roland's shadow for so long, Alain and Cuthbert also get to take center stage here -- we get to see just how strong and capable they are.

"Dark Tower: The Long Road Home" is not as tightly-written as its predecessor, but it's filled with a sense of overhanging horror and some solid action for the sidekicks. Definitely worth checking out.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I like the new material Jan. 3 2009
By chitowngirl0 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I'm probably in the minority... but I enjoyed the new material in Long Road Home. Storyline is about the journey back after Hambry,Roland's encounter with the Crimson King and features more Cuthbert and Alain dialogue, which I enjoyed. I like the story of the young Gunslinger and I really hope they keep the story arcs to the early days (since there are already seven books written by The King about what happens after) Even though it is not King's words, so to speak, it's still his story and there's lots of material to mine from this fantastic epic. The artwork is breath-taking. I can just pore over the illustrations. I'm not even a comic book reader and in all probability this is the only series I will ever purchase. I actually read the comics because I couldn't wait for the graphic novel at the time, and I don't have the hardcover (Yet). I noticed with Gunslinger Born graphic novel they left out some material that was in the Gunslinger comics -- backstory regarding the history or In-World, meaning of the Beam, the myth of Dark Tower, Eldred Jonas, Rhea as a young girl etc. I'm wondering if they did this with the Long Road Home graphic novel. If so that would be very disappointing, because I enjoyed that extra story/exposition that was included in the comic books. I'll still buy the graphic novel anyway because I just prefer hardcovers.

If you're a Dark Tower junkie you just need this. The Dark Tower was made for comics (but I'm so glad there are books! books with lots and lots of pages!) If you're new to the series, I'd recommend Stephen King's seven books instead because even with all the exposition (in the comics) I think readers will not 'get it' in its full context -- just my humble opinion, but it's good stuff nonetheless.
23 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Dark Tower has taken a different path toward the clearing Oct. 23 2008
By Joe - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Unlike Gunslinger Born this is pretty much new material, not a quick summary of Roland's flashbacks. The authors take some liberties with the story, especially concerning the story of Sheemie. (In DT7 Roland says he always knew Sheemie was special but according to this story that was quite the understatement.) But it also means it flows a lot better as a comic book. Read it if you're a tower junkie. If not, you probably won't get much out of it.

After looking at this after a year I have to disagree with myself as I was still in denial. Its nice to come back to Roland's old Ka-tet but the writers of this graphic novel wanted to combine the Roland's old world with elements of the last three books. And I've got to say that they do not belong. I don't want to spoil anything but it takes away some of the magic and mystery of the dark tower universe. The story definitely does not capture the literary elements that Stephen King is best known for. (That is if you don't count making the Crimson King seem like a pushover in the climactic fight.) I did not continue to buy any of the newer ones because for me I don't want to see any more of my dark tower ruined.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's Hard To Be The King Nov. 10 2008
By Sky - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Shortly after graduating high school (too many years ago to admit to), I read my first Stephen King novel called Firestarter about young Ms. Charlie McGee. Shortly after, I decided to take on King's 800+ page epic called The Stand (updated in the 90s to 1100+ pages!)....After those two novels I was hooked on anything King...couldn't wait for his next release.

In 1982 King brought back the main antagonist (albeit under a different name) of The Stand for the beginning of what turned into an awesome seven-part series called The Dark Tower. In 2007 we were treated with a new beginning to The Dark Tower series, a prequel, a graphic novel called The Gunslinger Born. Hence, I could not wait for The Long Road Home...this second installment of the spinoff comic book Dark Tower series.

King again worked closely with Marvel, his personal assistant of several years (Robin Furth) and an experienced comic book writer (Peter David) in order to deliver this second adaptation of his work. The Long Road Home is a bit more Robin Furth and Peter David than was The Gunslinger Born. In other words, any King fan(atic) knows King's signature style and typical prose. And that style and prose was clear as day in The Gunslinger Born. But in The Long Road Home, it just seemed a bit less King and a bit more Furth and David. This is not really a bad thing. It's just that King has that magic that makes you a dedicated reader; that magic is kind of MIA in The Long Road Home.

Don't get me wrong. I thoroughly enjoyed The Long Road Home. But don't expect a Stephen King novel. Sure, King had oversight, and Furth and David are good...but they are not The King.

The story picks up with Roland Deschain and friends Alain and Bert as they make their way home from their first assignment by The Elders that was played out in The Gunslinger Born. It's a cool adventure, but I'd be more interested if from here Furth, David and King took the actual Dark Tower novels and converted them into graphic novels for an amazing, image-filled, refreshing re-read. After all...it's been 25 years since I read the first Dark Tower novel, and the way my memory has been working lately, a graphic novel adaptation would be like reading it for the first time. Do ya kennit?

Regardless, whether you've ever read a comic book, graphic novel, Dark Tower or Stephen King story for that matter, The Gunslinger Born and The Long Road Home are great escapes into a world that goes on forever. I highly recommend reading them in the order that they were released.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Boy No More: the Saga Continues Oct. 21 2008
By tvtv3 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Beginning immediately where THE GUNSLINGER BORN ended, THE LONG ROAD HOME tells the story of how the young Roland Deschain, Alain Johns, and Bert Allgood returned home to Gilead after their first major adventure together. Roland shoots Maerlyn's Grapefruit which turns into a giant eyeball that jumps on Roland and sucks his soul into a neatherworld of evil. There Roland comes face to face for the first time against the Crimson King. Alain and Bert carry Roland's body with them and protect it while being chased by the last Big Coffin Hunter and mutated wolves. Meanwhile, Sheemie, the mentally-challenged boy that Roland and his ka-tet defended and took under wing, struggles alone on his own and encounters a robot that gives him special powers.

THE GUNSLINGER BORN was the beginning of an epic saga. It read like an action-filled television series leading to a climatic cliffhanger. THE LONG ROAD HOME reads as the season-opening episode of the same series that wraps up the cliffhanger from before. The story is much simpler, much more direct, and moves at a faster pace. Much of the THE GUNSLINGER BORN was given to exposition. There is no exposition in THE LONG ROAD HOME. Yet, the story is just as engaging. Where THE GUNSLINGER BORN told how Roland and his original ka-tet came together, THE LONG ROAD HOME alludes to a future in which the ka-tet will be dissolved.

The artwork is magnificent and some of the stand alone frames and scenes could be blown up and turned into wall-mounted pieces. The artists do an excellent job of capturing the pink and bleak world that Roland finds himself in when swallowed by the Eye, juxtaposing it to a more colorful, though darker world where his ka-tet are.

The only major drawback of the book is that readers who have not read the previous book, THE GUNSLINGER BORN or who have not read King's WIZARD AND GLASS might be confused when reading the book. As mentioned before, there is no exposition in this story which is a good thing for fans of the series, but something newcomers might find a bit confusing.

Overall, not a bad graphic novel that fans of Stephen King and THE DARK TOWER series will probably enjoy the most.
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