Bilbo Baggins was a hobbit who wanted to be left alone in quiet comfort. But the wizard Gandalf came along with a band of homeless dwarves. Soon Bilbo was drawn into their quest, facing evil orcs, savage wolves, giant spiders, and worse unknown dangers. Finally, it was Bilbo-alone and unaided-who had to confront the great dragon Smaug, the terror of an entire countryside . . .
I have to admit I was expecting a lot from this book being that it is the predecessor to the amazing Lord of the Rings trilogy and found myself let down a bit. Although the book was fairly enjoyable, I struggled to get into it, and found it only interesting in parts.
In The Hobbit, Bilbo is almost tricked into going on an adventure with the wizard Gandalph and 13 dwarves to retrieve the treasure stolen from the dwarves by the dragon Smaug so many years ago. Bilbo is timid at first, not completely sure and confident in his capabilities as a hobbit, and let’s Gandalph and the dwarves make the decisions. But soon there are several times Bilbo is called upon to be brave and help his traveling companions out of many a sticky situation.
I love that a small man has the opportunity, and rises to it, to become extraordinary in this tale. Bilbo is faced with some serious opposition, but his clever thinking and quick actions save the day on more than one occasion. Through his adventure he grows and learns to trust in himself despite the seemingly insurmountable odds.
But as an epic tale, I can only hope Lord of the Rings reads better. There were many points where the story lagged for me, and I found I wasn’t very motivated to pick this back up and continue. While I’m glad to know the back story of how Bilbo came across the magical ring, I wasn’t enthralled with the story as I thought I would be.
I plan on finally reading The Lord of the Rings trilogy, so I’m glad I read The Hobbit if for no other reason than to have the back story and history for the books to follow. The Hobbit was a decent story, but far from epic as I had anticipated.
PS: I just found out they are making this into a movie! Peter Jackson to direct (YES!). So I’m hoping the movie will be great.
Filed in: Lord of the Rings, Reviews Tags: Books, Fantasy, Fiction, J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, Review