In 2009, Stephen King asked his fans what they’d rather get first — a sequel to The Shining or a new Dark Tower book. They voted for Shining sequel, but the Dark Tower book came first anyway. That book? The Wind Through the Keyhole, a (relatively) trim tale that revisits our favorite gunslinger and his ka-tet in between the events of Wizard and Glass and Wolves of the Calla. In it, Roland spins an eerie tale from his youth over a roaring fire as a starkblast rages outside. As far as Dark Tower stories go, it’s a cozy one.

Join The Losers’ Club‘s Randall Colburn, Dan Caffrey, and Dan Pfleegor as they palaver about its nesting story structure, fairy tale detour, and emotional peek at a young gunslinger in the throes of grief. More importantly, was this book the one that best presaged King’s drift towards crime fiction? Yes, absolutely, 100%.

Stream the discussion below and stay tuned next week when the Losers return with their first book episode of 2024 with Joyland. For further adventures, join the Club over long days and pleasant nights via Apple Podcasts, Spotify, RadioPublic, Acast, Google Podcasts, and RSS. You can also unlock hundreds of hours of content in The Barrens (Patreon), including more Lobstrosities like this episode.