What I’m about to say is sacrilege, and I realize that it could potentially injure some of my book–related relationships… but I have to tell the truth.
I can’t stand reading the LOTR books. In fact… I made it through the first book and 25 pages of the second.
But I have watched the movies quite a bit…actually I love the movies to pieces. The story is just so great. Which is where I point my mind to whenever I’m talking to a LOTR book fan and I can’t change the topic. I suppose I should apologize for posing as an Elvish speaking, Tolkien lit fan in order to fit into the book world…but I really don’t think I will. It’s been fun.
So what is so terrible about the LOTR books that I haven’t bothered to stick through the second or the third book? Why do I rely on my ability to remember scenes, quote them and nod intelligently when anything outside those scenes is discussed? I believe that the reason for this is that I can’t stand reading page after page of Frodo’s whiny dialogue and unspectacular self. I’d rather watch it. At least it doesn’t take quite as long to get through those parts! And because of this terrible introduction to J.R.R. Tolkien, I haven’t really tried to pick up another one of his books… until The Hobbit.
Bilbo Baggins is everything that Frodo isn’t. And while I appreciate that Frodo had a tough burden to carry through the books, Bilbo was also on a dangerous mission outside of his preciously quiet Hobbit life. Much like Frodo (or should we say that Frodo was much like Bilbo?) Bilbo is set onto his journey by Gandalf to help the dwarves rid themselves of Smaug, which he does. Along the way Bilbo becomes the first Baggins to leave the Shire, the first Baggins to outwit Gollum (my favourite riddles are in this book!), the first Baggins to be a “friend to the elves”. And he does all of this without the whine. Perhaps the older generation Hobbits were more sturdy?
That’s all I’ll say on the subject… I’ll let Leonard Nimoy take over from here.