Roland, the gunslinger, isn’t any one I can admire right now, even though he is clearly the hero.
He isn’t a hero as I would define one: honest, fearless, and loyal.
He wanders through the dry desert, following the tracks of the man in black, leaving destruction in his wake. Allie, with whom he has slept (for information) is dead; the town, Tull, is destroyed behind him.
He meets a boy, a brave boy named Jake, who has somehow withstood the heat, the lack of food and water. They go together, the boy clearly admiring the gunslinger and asking for stories from his youth. How, for example, did Roland become a man?
The answer is less than pleasant. The gunslinger used a trick against his teacher, choosing a weapon which was perfectly admissible and yet most difficult to take a position against. The battle is bloody, and I can tell this is just the beginning of many such battles.
For there are hints that Roland will exchange the boy, use him as “a poker chip” which Jake himself knows, when next they meet the man in black.
It ain’t no Girl Scout camp, this journey to the Tower. The fact that Roland came from New Canaan ought to be enough to tell you that, for as anyone knows, Canaan was not a land of the noble or good. No matter what Stephen King may tell you.
It will be interesting to see where this series takes us, if I continue in reading all 7 books. After I get back to the Man Booker list, of course.