Arun Divakar's Reviews > The Hobbit

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
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Sep 17, 2009

really liked it
Read from January 15 to 17, 2012

This tale is at its core, a very cozy adventure. I have not read LOTR & I see the work solely on the basis of Peter Jackson's trilogy of movies. One thing I could fathom from the movies was that it is a grim tale of Wizadry,Chivalry,Friendship, War & the works that make a kickass fantasy yarn. Hobbit differs from LOTR here in the fact that it is not a dark tale. It is the kind of book you can curl up with a cup of coffee on a rainy day.

It was my first experience of reading Tolkien & the one thing that I loved about his writing is on the creation of the landscape. Tolkien describes the geography with relish. I can practically picture myself walking with my teeth chattering in the darned rain along a mountain path that is desolate & at any sudden moment the goblins might jump me! Another trait that stands out in the tale is its Britishness. Coming from an Anglo-Saxon professor, this is not much of a surprise. Even a goblin calls his prisoner my lad .

This leads me to the next most interesting character in the book who is Smaug the dragon. He is a most eloquent and articulative beast. My dear Mr. Smaug, you should have been better off being a barrister in London than being this fire breathing reptile hidden away in a lair ! I loved your articulative disposition of speech.

Is it just me or are there no female characters worth mentioning in this book ? It feels like a David Mamet script with strong male characters & pretty much nothing else in the scope of the fairer sex.

For me, discarding what I wrote above there is very little that stands out as criticism. But the sum total of the other parts make this a delightful read !
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Comments (showing 1-6 of 6) (6 new)

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Richard One thing people sometimes criticize Tolkien for is the way he presents female characters, especially in LOTR.

But a very good review indeed. You point out some things that I had not thought of!


Arun Divakar Richard wrote: "One thing people sometimes criticize Tolkien for is the way he presents female characters, especially in LOTR.

But a very good review indeed. You point out some things that I had not thought of!"


Thank you Richard.

I did notice that women were somehow not too much in the limelight in LOTR. The movies did have that feel. The books would give more details on this I suppose.


message 3: by Nandakishore (new)

Nandakishore Varma The British countryside is beautiful, and it is evident that Tolkien loved it. He was unhappy that it was getting destroyed due to industrialisation. Asimov says Tolkien's representation of Mordor parallels an oil refinery!


Arun Divakar Nandakishore wrote: "The British countryside is beautiful, and it is evident that Tolkien loved it. He was unhappy that it was getting destroyed due to industrialisation. Asimov says Tolkien's representation of Mordo..."

He is not subtle about this love in his words. I would need to read LOTR to get to the details of his love for the countryside. However, Bilbo's longing for the shire can be interpreted in this way if you stare long & hard at it.


message 5: by Nandakishore (new)

Nandakishore Varma The last chapter of LOTR, "The Scouring of the Shire", is almost a wish-fulfilment fantasy of industry being driven away from the countryside.


message 6: by Arun (last edited Jan 19, 2012 10:10AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Arun Divakar Nandakishore wrote: "The last chapter of LOTR, "The Scouring of the Shire", is almost a wish-fulfilment fantasy of industry being driven away from the countryside."

It sounds remotely similar to the exploration of the countryside in Kenneth Grahame's 'Wind in the willows'.


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