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The Return of the King

(The Lord of the Rings #3)

4.53  ·  Rating details ·  672,392 ratings  ·  9,980 reviews
Alternate cover edition here.

The Companions of the Ring have become involved in separate adventures as the quest continues. Aragorn, revealed as the hidden heir of the ancient Kings of the West, joined with the Riders of Rohan against the forces of Isengard, and took part in the desperate victory of the Hornburg. Merry and Pippin, captured by Orcs, escaped into Fangorn For
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Mass Market Paperback, Media Tie-In Edition, 404 pages
Published 2003 by Del Rey (first published October 20th 1955)
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Yelp! Dear Linh,

I have a possible answer. Namely, in heroic literature, such as the Lord of the Rings, and in classic literature in general, authors always…more
Dear Linh,

I have a possible answer. Namely, in heroic literature, such as the Lord of the Rings, and in classic literature in general, authors always strive towards some kind of moral symmetry. Sins must be atoned for, and the proper form of atonement for the gravest sins is a hero's death. Boromir had to die for his sins, and (if you've read the Hobbit) so did Thorin Oakenshield.

Frodo committed serious sins by the end of the story, as the ring overpowered him and he coveted it for himself and himself alone. However, it seems that Tolkien could not simply kill him off. Not because he is the main protagonist, but because he is such an unlikely protagonist - a hobbit willing to go into the very mouths of hell to save his friends - and if in this he was overpowered - so what! So, we cannot just kill him off.

However, the "Undying Lands", while not death (in fact, the opposite) do represent a departure from this world. So, for Frodo the atonement is not merely complete, it is actually transformed in to a reward. He sinned, but the burden was not meant for him, and in taking it on voluntarily (and playing a large part in quite literally saving the world) he went farther than anyone could have expected. The departure must take place, that is the way of things, and the scales of justice must find balance in all things, but for Frodo, punishment is turned into reward - and this reward must be accepted, or the scales will not find their balance.

Please tell me what you think of this interpretation!

Yelp!(less)
Ethan It is not necessary to read them but it provides much backstory and also what happens after the books. I would suggest that you do read them.

Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.53  · 
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mark monday
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

a rousing climax to the most ravishing love story of the modern age. tempestuous, tormented Frodo at long last learns to accept the love of his lifemate - the loyal and submissive Samwise Gamgee, bottom-extraordinaire. this is truly a tale of love's labour hard-won, and at such a cost! but love conquers all in the end, and even bitter, militantly hetero villain Sauron cannot stand in the heart's path for too long. in this third book of the torrid trilogy, Frodo's love-hate relationship
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Sean Barrs
Tolkien is the master of world building. With his writing comes generations of detailed history and lore. Middle Earth did not simply spring up overnight. Instead it is firmly established with the most thorough groundwork that is simply unmatched. And here his epic trilogy comes to an end. I’ve read it many times over the years, and reviewing it is no easy task. So, like my reviews of the first two books, I’ve picked out ten things I really love about the book. Spoilers ahead.

1.The blade that w
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Mike (the distracted librarian)
Jun 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: amazeballs
EXTENDED EDITION MOVIES MARATHON TIME!!!!!! 😍😃😃😃 my place at 5 am. Bring snacks.

❗️Note: there are much more scholarly reviews available out there, so if that interests you, I would refer you to reviews like this one:
https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...
or the official Tolkien Society: https://www.tolkiensociety.org/
That being said, I hope my layman approach is enjoyable for most 😉

Aragorn: "For Frodo."


Holy Gimli son of Glóin, I loved this book! Tolkien is a demigod when it comes to worldbuildi
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Petrik
Aug 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.”


It’s over. I have finally finished reading The Return of the King, the third and final part of The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien; This means that I am officially done with Tolkien’s main novels in The Middle-Earth universe, and I’m proud of myself for it. I’ve read plenty of epic fantasy series mor
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Alejandro
The last stand for the control of Middle-Earth!


I WENT TO MIDDLE-EARTH AND ALL I GOT WAS THIS CRUMMY RING

That’s the message in a t-shirt that I got in a tourism travel (and I still have it!). I thought that it was appropiate to begin my review about the third part and final of Lord of the Rings.

All that fuzz about a ring that can turn you invisible? You may think, but that was the least of its properties. Its major use was being able to control of the rest of ring-bearers with it, and if
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Ahmad Sharabiani
494. The Lord of The Rings: The Return of the King, J.R.R. Tolkien

The Return of the King: Sauron sends a great army against Gondor. Gandalf arrives at Minas Tirith to warn Denethor of the attack, while Theoden musters the Rohirrim to ride to Gondor's aid. Minas Tirith is besieged. Denethor is deceived by Sauron and falls into despair. He burns himself alive on a pyre, nearly taking his son Faramir with him.

Aragorn, accompanied by Legolas, Gimli and the Rangers of the North, takes the Paths of t
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Calista
I was living with my uncle 20 years ago and he is a vast reader in many genres. I was looking for something new to read when he told me to read this series. He had these beautiful hardback books with fold-out maps. I had heard of the hobbit and saw the cartoon as a kid. I thought it was an okay movie, but it didn't really impress me. He convinced me that I needed to read this. So, I started with the hobbit and read one book after the other until I was done with this book.

I remember being awed b
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Hannah Greendale
The Return of the King takes about a hundred pages to sink one's teeth into, but persevering is worth it for the glint of sunrise on a victorious maiden's hair, for the show of willpower against all odds in the eleventh hour, and for the golden bloom of a happy ending.
Michael Finocchiaro
The end of an epic! The Return of the King brings a conclusion to the wonderful Lord of the Rings trilogy and is one of the most satisfying conclusions to a long tale that has ever been written.

In this book, we leave Frodo and Sam in Mordor and rejoin Pippin and Gandalf, Merry and Theoden, and Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli as the suspense builds towards the final battle. Gandalf has a hard time explaining the death of Boromir to the grieving father Denethor who will have a sad ending himself as thi
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Paul E. Morph
Well, I've come to the end of the road once more... This was my tenth reading of Tolkien's saga of Middle Earth (the first time I visited was in 1986) and it's pointless trying to write a balanced review of my favourite books. Suffice it to say that these books are a part of me; written into my DNA, if you like, and I love them dearly.
I'll be back in a year or two, Bagginses, to do it all over again...

Buddy read with Sunshine Seaspray.

-------------------------------------------------

And I did co
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Merphy Napier
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, adult, classics
here's the video where I did a review https://youtu.be/TOXoZOjycgw ...more
James
Book Review
4 of 5 stars to The Return of the King, the third book in the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, written in 1955, by J.R.R. Tolkien. After reading the first two books in this series, how can you not finish it with this one? I knocked them back between 9th and 10th grades, loving every minute of the imagination and struggle between good and evil. When I got this this final one, I already knew I'd be sad to say goodbye to all the characters I'd fallen hardcore for over the 1500 pa
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J.G. Keely
Writers who inspire a genre are usually misunderstood. Tolkien's reasons for writing were completely unlike those of the authors he inspired. He didn't have an audience, a genre, and scores of contemporaries. There was a tradition of high adventure fairy tales, as represented by Eddison, Dunsany, Morris, MacDonald, Haggard, and Kipling, but this was only part of what inspired Tolkien.

His writing was chiefly influenced by his familiarity with the mythological traditions of the Norse and Welsh cul
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Jason Koivu
Nov 22, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ah, The Return of the King. The end of a sweeping epic, one which held me firmly in its grasp as a child and still holds a place in my heart as an adult.

Everything is in motion and actually coming to an end almost from the first page of this last book in the trilogy. Frodo is ever so close to completing his quest. Aragon, Gandalf and the others are nearly at the end of their rope. Indeed, the end is nigh!

But this is not a quick finish. Tolkien dragged things out. There is a mini-battle after th
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Stephen
Jun 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
***NEW LAWSUIT UPDATE BELOW (6-30-11)...Lone reviewer continues fight with corporate ASSCLOWNS powers in epic 1st Amendment battle royale.***

4.0 stars. FULL REVIEW (hopefully) to follow after resolution of the lawsuit* filed against this reviewer in the District Court of Narnia by, among others: 20th Century Fucks Fox, Lucasfilms, the Tolkien Estate and Robert Van Winkle (aka Vanilla AsshatIce) in order to prevent the release of an allegedly offensive but in reality just knee-slappingly funny PA
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Anish Kohli
“So we come to it in the end, the great battle of our time, in which many things shall pass away. But at least there is no longer need for hiding. The board is set, and the pieces are moving. And now all realms shall be put to the test, to stand, or fall – under the Shadow.”
People: *looking at the 3 star rating causes wincing and face spasms* What fuckery is this? You rated Tolkien 3 damn stars?
Anish: Guys, take it easy! This book was...
People: You rated the last one 4 stars bcz of tha
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J. Treader
Mar 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
Heck yeah! I’ve read The Lord of the Rings!

*buys a sword*
Lyndz
Jun 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: witches-wizards


Well, there really IS no greater compliment...
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Jonathan
Feb 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
A Review of Lord of the Rings: Return of the King, by Sauron

[Oprah Winfrey voice-over]: We all remember him. Sauron, the displaced Lord of the Rings. Once feared by millions, Sauron has been living in relative squalor in what he prefers to remain an undisclosed location.

[Video shows unidentified heap of garbage behind a Wal-mart. In front stands a mailbox with the word "Nameless Enemy" printed on the front. The flag is down.]

[applause]

Oprah: Today, we'll be joined by someone that many of you kn
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Zitong Ren
“Rohan had come”

The first half of this book is epic and full of grandeur and forever legendary battles. The second half of this book begins with the climax rather quickly before our heroes journey all the way home and find out how their lives are changed evermore. The ending is honestly so very beautiful and I couldn’t help but tear up slightly up some parts, not cry, I do that very rarely when it comes to books, but the tears were certainly there here and again as we reached ever closer to the
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K.D. Absolutely
Aug 23, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: 501 Must Read Books; 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (2006-2010); TFG100 Most Favorite Books; Time 100; Metalist 100 by Newsweek; Guardian's 100
What else can I say? I enjoyed all these three books included in
The Lord of the Rings

The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, #1) by J.R.R. Tolkien (5 STARS), The Two Towers (The Lord of the Rings, #2) by J.R.R. Tolkien (5 STARS) and now
The Return of the King (The Lord of the Rings, #3) by J.R.R. Tolkien (5 STARS).

It has the most tight interesting plot, memorable characters and universal unending theme: the triumph of good over evil. In fact, in the closing scene of the book, Frodo gives the book he wrote to Sam, the world's greatest gardener. The title of the book is The Downfall of the Lord of the Rings and the Return of the King. The "lord" refers to the
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Liz
Is it even possible to review a legend? To write a review about a completely different and unique world?

It is not. It is just not possible.
Just imagine writing a review about our world, about all the countries and cities and cultures and all the wars. It would simply be too long and too difficult.

What I can say about this book is that the epic journey finally came to an end.
The Fellowship had to fight bloody, hopeless fights, it had to survive epic battles and it found friends where frien
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Brian
Dec 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
2020: Eight:
This read impacted me stronger than any previous journeys. I said over and over in my heart, "I want to stay here. I don't want to leave this place." So, I'm seeking to stay there. That special, unidentified quality in books, I've found, doesn't live within genres and systems. It lives in the authors. It is the authors. New discoveries: Dark! Dark fantasy, even horror! Heads catapulted over the wall. You walk around the corner to look at these big balls of rain falling into your yard
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Kerri
Feb 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A perfect final volume to an epic adventure. I came to love the characters dearly and was sad to finish the story in many ways. The last chapter in particular was very emotional.
James
Apr 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
‘The Lord of the Rings’: John Ronald Reuel Tolkien’s three volume masterpiece comprising ‘The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King’ – is quite simply a literary, artistic and intellectual creation and achievement of epic and monumental proportions.

The stories that J. R. R. Tolkien has crafted to produce ‘The Lord of the Rings’ feel as though they have been carved out of stone. Tolkien’s creation of another world – Middle Earth, its history, its legends and the storie
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Will Byrnes
Nov 05, 2008 rated it it was amazing
The conclusion to my favorite series of all time. Will Frodo be able to complete his mission? Will such completion cost him his life? Can Middle Earth be saved? Ok. I know. You've seen the wonderful Peter Jackson films. But there is nothing like reading it for yourself. It is the difference in feeling between seeing it on TV and being there. Read the trilogy. Be there. You won't regret it.
Bradley
Ah, at long last, I finished my fifth or sixth reread of The Return of the King, marveling at just how unstated Peter Jackson's tongue-in-cheek faux endings were in comparison with the real thing.

Ah yes! The action is definitely glorious in both! The emotions brilliant! Wave after wave of battle, failure, regrouping, and last minute saves are fantastic in both the novel and the movie, but what staggers my imagination is not the end of Sauron, the unmaking of the One Ring, or how it came to pass.
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Roly Chuter
May 16, 2007 rated it did not like it
I’m sure glad Stevie didn’t bother to read this one:
Sam and Frodo wake up in some swamp/heath/mountain pass
Frodo: We’re lost, oh its awful, I’m hungry, we only have 3 pieces of elfin bread left
Sam: Don’t worry Frodo I’m here for you, you have the bread
Sam and Frodo walk around a bit looking dirty and lost and miserable
Frodo: oh the ring, it’s so heavy, how will I cope?
Golem: Myyy presssciousss [and all that nonsense]
Sam: Don’t worry you have a nice sleep, things’ll look better in the morning you
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Krystal
My heart is full.

This series is just so epic, and here at the end of things that never stops being true. It's the final push, where everyone's limits are tested, and frail hope has to be enough to spur them on.

The final installment begins in the city of Minas Tirith, which is rather fitting since it is to this city the titular king returns. Minas Tirth is practically next door to the (figurative and literal) heat of Mordor so they're preparing for a bad time. But Rohan is sending reinforcem
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Johann (jobis89)
Jun 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
"I will not say: do not weep; for not all tears are an evil."

You know the drill - Sam and Frodo are on their way to Mordor to try and destroy the ring, but not without a companion lurking in the shadows... The armies of the Dark Lord are massing in an epic battle for Middle Earth... it's all come down to this!

And so my journey through Middle Earth has ended *cue hysterical crying*. Revisiting both The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings this year was a great decision - I'll be revisiting Hogwarts in a
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Fantasy Buddy Reads: The Return of the King [October 1, 2020] 7 17 Sep 20, 2020 06:15AM  
Goodreads Librari...: New Cover 1 7 Aug 17, 2020 05:28AM  
Studi Tolkieniani: Finalmente le mappe - tutte! 4 24 Jul 20, 2020 10:07AM  
Lord of the Reada...: Part 6 Chapters 5-End 5 13 Jul 11, 2020 10:04AM  
Lord of the Reada...: Part 6 Chapters 1-4 1 7 Jun 05, 2020 11:08AM  

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John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, CBE was an English writer, poet, WWI veteran (a First Lieutenant in the Lancashire Fusiliers, British Army), philologist, and university professor, best known as the author of the high fantasy classic works The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings .

Tolkien was Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford from 1925 to 1945, and Merton Professor of English
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Other books in the series

The Lord of the Rings (3 books)
  • The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, #1)
  • The Two Towers (The Lord of the Rings, #2)

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