15. Read a Stephen King Novel
Vikki, I never thanked you for all of your King recs in the comments section of my original post, but the truth was that I had already made my pick. Now, I kinda wish I had listened to you.
The Gunslinger is not at all a bad book, but I was disappointed. I read it because I've long heard that the Dark Tower series is fantastic. I read it because I know it had a big influence on the writers of Lost. I read it because my friend suggested that I read it. Mostly, however, I read it because it was free.
I shouldn't complain. I do appreciate my friend gifting this to me, and there were parts I really enjoyed. At the end of the day, however, it was not the King experience I wanted. While I imagine that the series as a whole is much more impressive, I found this book to be quite weak as a standalone. I thought the plot was redundant and thin, and it's about 100 pages too long.
The end of the book, however, really grabbed me. I am definitely interested in reading more of the series just to see where its headed. And I'm not giving up on King. I look forward to checking out some of his more popular works. This was an early piece of writing for him, and it's clearly meant to establish characters and lay the ground work for a more complex saga...so I don't feel like I can really be too judgmental. I just hope the next in the series will offer some redemption.