The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien: 52 in 52 Book #20


The Hobbit

The Hobbit is a novel I have been attempting to read since I was eight years old. My mum lent me her copy to take to Brownie pack camp with me along with the newly released Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. This was my first attempt at reading The Hobbit and I’m sorry to say it was thwarted by my impatience to read JK Rowling’s latest instalment. A couple of years later I tried again and this time was distracted by my extra-curricular clubs and hobbies. All in all I must have tried to read The Hobbit about four or five times before this, never making it beyond the second chapter.

This time, I was determined to read it. I had received my own copy for Christmas in 2012 and ever since it had been taunting me from the bookshelf across the room from my bed. After finishing my dissertation, I decided to give in to its relentless mocking and conquer the beast once and for all!

It wasn’t an easy book to read, at least not for me. I found it hard to get motivated to read it or find other things I would rather be doing. I took to trying to read it at least once a day, even if I only read a couple of pages. At one point I completely forgot about it for roughly five days.

However, that’s not to say I didn’t enjoy it. I loved the story and how it constantly changed with many different settings and characters to immerse myself in. The detail in the descriptions is simply stunning and I had no trouble imagining the whole thing. You feel the joy, the despair, the triumph and the anguish through each and every chapter and it was a pleasure to be invited along to watch Mr Baggins’s adventure.

My absolute favourite bits are the songs and poems. Each is filled with magical, spell binding words that melt into your mind and encapsulate you imagination with amazing poetry and rhyme. They add to and incense the mood of the scenes they are part of, building the atmosphere for whatever Mr Tolkien dared to imagine happened next.

The character development and relationships are complex and deep. You feel for these characters and root for them but also occasionally curse their stupidity or feel anguish at their defeat. They are fallible and, as such, believable and real in the mind’s eye. They play a large part of what is so rewarding and enjoyable about The Hobbit.

So whilst I may have found the actual reading difficult, the main point that shows how good this book is, is that I came back to it. I felt guilty for not reading it and became annoyed when other commitments meant I couldn’t read just a few more pages. This book is a well-loved gem by many and it is easy to see why. Hopefully in the future, I can lend my children my copy of The Hobbit and they will surpass their mother and read and come to love this story as much as I have.

 

Kat

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