The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien
February 1, 2010 § 21 Comments
This is my first try with Tolkien, and I dare say, the fantasy genre. I’m not all that into dragons and elves and weird magical creatures. But I guess there’s only so long I can run away from reading Tolkien, before I get chased down by my own friends, pinning me down with evil stares and Tolkien’s many books.
I like my stories to start where they’re supposed to, so as much as I was tempted to jump straight into the Lord of the Rings trilogy, I knew I’d be picking up The Hobbit and reading that first. More like trying for taste, and deciding to see if fantasy really was my thing.
And besides, the LOTR Read-Along button is just too beautiful to be resisted. (I am, however, not taking part in this read-along)
I had a lot of fun with this book. For some weird reason, I had imagined the language to be impossible to read and follow, but it was definitely not the case here. Maybe because the initial intended audience was for children, the story was told in such an innocent manner, I really did feel like a child, having a good time getting lost in a magical world where bravery and courage prove to be assets.
I loved the fact that this is the book where Bilbo Baggins is introduced. I’ve watched the LOTR movies, and Bilbo Baggins doesn’t really feature much. But it was interesting to read about Hobbits in general, and about the adventurous side of Bilbo, something very rare in Hobbits indeed.
And, crazy though it may sound, I actually love Gollum as well! I loved the way he talked to himself, the way referred to himself when talking to Bilbo, the way he referred to Bilbo. There’s a scene where Bilbo and Gollum are having a riddle-game, and I just loved it. Bilbo asks Gollum a riddle, for example:
A box without hinges, key, or lid,
Yet golden treasure inside is hid.
To which Gollum answers: “Eggses!”
“Eggses!” he says! I just love the way Gollum speaks.
The elves and Rivendell didn’t feature as prominently as I had thought they would. I wonder if there are any other books by Tolkien that explore the elves a little more, just like this book explores about hobbits and dwarves. (Any Tolkien fan out there can help me with this?)
I think this means that I’ll be reading the Lord of the Rings trilogy, but maybe not so soon. I’m still very new into this genre, and so I’m thinking of trying out Pullman’s His Dark Materials next. And besides, my friends are already jumping for joy that I’ve finally started what they deem as ‘compulsory reading’. I’ll have no lack of people willing to loan their copies of LOTR to me. =)