The Hobbit

[openbook booknumber=”0618002219″][rating:5/5]

It’s hard to write a review about a classic like The Hobbit. You can’t help but be awed by the history and literary significance of the books (and I include both The Hobbit and the trilogy that follows when I say this) upon which so much of epic fantasy literature is now based. Everything from the heroes quest to the world building, from the wizards and dragons to the goblins and elves scream fantasy to you and you can’t help but realize that this was one of the first, and that definitely gives you pause and something to think about.

All that the unsuspecting Bilbo saw that morning was an old man with a staff. He had a tall pointed blue hat, a long grey cloak, a silver scarf over which his long white beard hung down below his waist, and immense black boots.
       “Good morning!” said Bilbo, and he meant it. The sun was shining, and the grass was very green. But Gandalf looked at him from under long bushy eyebrows that stuck out further than the brim of his shady hat.
       “What do you mean?” he said. “Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I wish it or not; or that you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?”
       “All of them at once,” said Bilbo. “And a very fine morning for a pipe of tobacco out of doors, into the bargain.” Then Bilbo sat down on a seat by his door, crossed his legs, and blew out a beautiful grey ring of smoke that sailed up into the air without breaking and floated away over The Hill.

Everyone knows the story of Bilbo Baggins. The poor Hobbit gets caught up in a quest that he embarks on with a little help from a wizard (Gandalf) and the adventures that unfold as this hired burglar journeys with thirteen dwarves to face a dragon that has conquered their home. Though initially reluctant and timid, Bilbo comes into his own as he journeys with the dwarves facing trolls, goblins, whargs, spiders, elves and more on the way to facing the evil dragon Smaug.

With the help of his sword Sting and a ring that he picks up in Gollum’s cave he soon becomes a formidable hobbit indeed, and soon finds that the timid hobbit from under the hill will end up deciding the fate of an epic battle as five armies come to meet on the the slopes of the Lonely Mountain.

I loved this book! The details, the storytelling, the narrators voice, the songs, all of it was just so readable and enjoyable and a very comforting read to snuggle up with on a cold January day. I would recommend this book to people young and old, and especially to any and all fans of fantasy. I read parts of the beginning aloud to my nephew during a car ride and he actually turned off his Nintendo DS to listen.

Whether you are reading is as part of the LOTR story, as a piece of fantasy’s history, or as an introduction to the world of epic fantasy, I think you will enjoy reading The Hobbit.

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