This is the second book in the Dark Tower series and it pulls together our main core of characters. Remember from the first book, The Gunslinger, Roland was told he must draw three. In this book, Roland comes across 3 doors that are portals into another world, our world, at different points in time. From those portals, he draws his three companions who will travel to the Dark Tower with Roland.
We start off with Roland where he ended in the first book, except he's aged quite a bit. He awakens on a beach and has an encounter with a lobstrosity ("Did-a-chick?") and that encounter leaves him minus some fingers and a toe. Naturally, these lobster-dohickeys are poisonous so Roland quickly gets very ill. Luckily, we come across the first door that leads us into Eddie Dean's world. Eddie is a heroin addict who initially, and later, fights against Roland.
Our next door brings us to Odetta Holmes/Detta Walker. She's a paralyzed woman with 2 distinct personalities and one of them, Detta, is a pretty terrible person. Roland doesn't have as much time with her to convince her to come to his world so he abruptly brings her over.
The third door, well, now, that's an interesting one. Mort is behind that door (The Pusher) but we don't want him. What happens behind this door brings us our third person. I love how this story plays out, even reading it the second time around made me happy.
Our band of merry (?) travelers continue on.......