If you care for journeys there and back, out of the comfortable Western world, over the edge of the Wild, and home again, and can take an interest in a humble hero (blessed with a little wisdom and a little courage and considerable good luck), here is a record of such a journey and such a traveler.(J.R.R. Tolkien)
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I was 12 when I read The Fellowship of the Ring and I remember I was very disappointed because I thought it was difficult and, peculiarly, I couldn’t appreciate the son of father of grandfather that kept popping throughout the book. I finally gave up on it when Frodo’s party reached Rivendell. Since then, I’ve had a poor impression of The Lord of the Rings novels although I loved the movie adaptations.
After I saw The Hobbit I decided to give this book a chance but, admittedly, I kept delaying because I couldn’t forget the experience I had from my first J.R.R. Tolkien book. Luckily, The Hobbit is in my 2016 Reading Challenge. Like Bilbo who was drawn out from his comfortable hobbit-hole with the promise of a great adventure, I was forced out of my comfort zone with the promise of getting something good out of one of the best-selling books ever.
This time, I wasn’t disappointed. Actually, I really liked this book. I was surprised and very pleased because The Hobbit isn’t difficult to understand and it’s even witty. Sometimes, the straightforward and conversational narration almost convinced me I was reading a children’s book not unlike Alice in Wonderland and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. But the amount of imagination and world-building, and the well constructed plot always reminded me that I was reading a book written by a genius.
The best and my personal favorite is the titular character, the hobbit. I loved that from the beginning Bilbo already had a few layers and these were developed as he experienced a world so much bigger than him. I loved how his flaws and the mistakes he made were sensible and I also liked his interaction with the other characters.
Sadly, these other characters weren’t as special. The dwarves weren’t as sympathetic as they were in the movie so I didn’t really care for them and their gold. If I did, this book would have been perfect. But even if it’s not, The Hobbit is still worth five stars. And if you like fantasy, adventure, and a whole lot of imagination, you’ll probably give it the same rating.
Have you read The Hobbit? What did you think about it?