- The encounter with the trolls put a definite damper on the Company’s spirits. No song or tale-weaving since.
- Dwarves may be good with household chores, but when in a hurry they still leave a mess.
- Laid the foundations for the story – this opening chapter introduced the main protagonists.
- Showcased race, geanealogy, home and character of key character Bilbo Baggins.
- Defined Gandalf as he’s come to be known, grumpiness, famous for his fireworks, and flare for a ton of things.
- Introduced the Dwarves who make up Thorin and Company. For the record, the proper introduction sequence was Dwalin, Balin, Kili and Fili, Dori, Nori, Ori, Oin, Gloin, Bifur, Bofur, Bombur, Thorin.
The fourth Tolkien book I read, (“Unfinished Tales” being the third one). It really is a textbook, and difficult to read through and enjoy, in the usual sense of the word, for me.
Of course this begs the question: why put myself through a difficult read, time and again? To misappropriate a quote from someone I know on a forum I frequent: “I’m a completist, even when it hurts.” It truly is not an easy book to navigate and enjoy, but it enriches the FA and SA of the ME world, and I aim to be a studious, competent student, if nothing else.
I have flipped through the book many times, taking out bits and confirming backgrounds and narratives for my own fanfic writing. Of particular interest and focus were “The Hunt For The Ring”, “The History Of Galadriel and Celeborn” and “The Disaster of the Gladden Fields”, events and narrative that fit into the larger picture of the ME timeline. But it is definitely an easier read than the Silm, since the stories are more developed, and was published intact, as the prof left them.
My first Tolkien epic. As mentioned, it was the movies that gave me that nudge out the door. Actually, quite a forceful shove, which had me sprawled and eating dirt in the Shire, both feet firmly off the ground and gawking in Middle-earth!
Rather an undignified position to begin an infatuation that has just grown its deathgrip from strength tp strength over time. Admittedly, the kismet is apt for my pussyfooting meandering around the inevitability for so long.
Tolkien fan-fiction that is. Not that I have delusions of grandeur; far from it. My approach is one of respect and sense of adventure: to understand and fill in the gaps unsaid (mainly to calm the unavoidable mental fidgeting in my head), not reinvention or re-imaginings – which is as fruitful as trying to re-discover the wheel, or fire.
Canon-friendly, canon-correct, canon-conscious, whatever the term, those are my perimeters, my prime directives. Which can be personally stressful and painful, painstaking in fact.
I have been aware of The Hobbit from a young age, and it was a book I wanted to read for a long time. But with all the books I could read being loans from the public library, and the popularity of Tolkien keeping the library copies out of my reach for a long while, I manage to get hold of a copy only in my teens.