Thursday, April 7, 2016

Book Review- The Hobbit

For the Audiobook challenge and the Hard Core Re-Reading Challenge I read (aka listened to) J.R.R. Tolkien's novel The Hobbit. If you read my blog you'll know I'm a huge Tolkien fan. Normally I re-read LOTR a lot but this year before re-reading LOTR I decided to read The Hobbit first. I'm so glad I did as it was a great experience and I've come to love The Hobbit as much has I do LOTR though it is quite different in many ways.
Synopsis from Goodreads: In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.
Written for J.R.R. Tolkien’s own children, The Hobbit met with instant critical acclaim when it was first published in 1937. Now recognized as a timeless classic, this introduction to the hobbit Bilbo Baggins, the wizard Gandalf, Gollum, and the spectacular world of Middle-earth recounts of the adventures of a reluctant hero, a powerful and dangerous ring, and the cruel dragon Smaug the Magnificent.
This books makes me feel cozy and at home. First you meet Bilbo, the beloved homebody living in his wonderful hole in the ground. :) Then comes Gandalf to stir things up. Gandalf in The Hobbit is kind of different then he is in LOTR. He seems more silly. More lighthearted for sure. You see him utilizing his magic more often in The Hobbit but somehow he doesn't seem quite as powerful in The Hobbit as he does in LOTR. This time reading it I really came to notice how Tolkien does not stray away from flawed characters. However flawed the "good" characters are though they are still good and honorable. Take Thorin for example. A very complicated character that we love but has a lot of issues (coughdragonsicknesscough). ;)

When reading The Hobbit it feels so much smaller than the LOTR but you also feel how much potential there is with the world that Tolkien has created in it and of course that is drawn out in LOTR and Tolkien's other Middle Earth works. It all started with The Hobbit though. The Hobbit is different from Tolkien's other Middle Earth stories like LOTR and The Silmarillion in that it is a children's story (though obviously adults enjoy it too). The whole tone is much lighter though actually I noticed this time reading it that there are definitely some darker undertones.

A small note on the movies. I know I reviewed the first one when it came out and never reviewed any of the others. That's not because I didn't see them I was just too frustrated. Re-reading The Hobbit now reminds me how much they messed up in the movies and makes me even more unhappy. I liked the first one for the most part (though it certainly messed up aspects as well), as it really seemed to get the spirit of the book. After the first movie though the movies seemed to lose the feel of The Hobbit. Don't even get me started on Tauriel. Just don't.

I'm not really sure what else I can say about this book. I loved it. Simply and truly. Tolkien is always a favorite with me and re-reading this just solidified that feeling. If you want to try out some Tolkien but are intimidated by the size of LOTR definitely pick up The Hobbit. It really opens you up to the experience, drawing you into Tolkien's beautiful writing and imagery as well as delightful sense of humor.

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  1. I'm reading The Hobbit right now for the first time, actually. ;) I love it so far! I really like Tolkien's style of writing.

    ~Lydia~ <3

    1. How have you not read it yet? ;) I adore Tolkien's writing style. It's fantastical. :)

  2. Hey, some of us with red-headed daughters who want to be ninjas are rather fond of Tauriel, intrusion though she may be. :) (Also I just didn't see movie #3. Didn't happen.)

    1. Well I guess we would have to agree to disagree. :)

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