Elaine's Reviews > The Hobbit

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
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Jun 19, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: childrens-literature, classics, fantasy
Recommended to Elaine by: Lauren Ball
Recommended for: Ages 12+
I own a copy

Having recently finished re-reading The Hobbit, I'm in a fresh mindset to give it a well-thought-out review that may be more telling than my simple five-star rating. I love J.R.R. Tolkien not only because my Dad loved J.R.R. Tolkien and began reading The Hobbit to his three kids when I was probably around 10 years old, but because I grew up to study Linguistics and learn more about who Tolkien was. The world he created, Middle Earth, wasn't just a beautiful yet frightening, curious yet enchanting place of fantasy to me growing up and hearing the tales Tolkien wove . . . Middle Earth was my earth, simply older. I've always had a tendency to retain some measure of wonder and awe about mysterious, possibly-but-not-likely-to-be-true stories. In large measure I'm sure I have my Dad to thank for this, since his enchanting stories about fairies hiding in twisted old trees always captivated my imagination. But why not believe that there once were mysterious creatures living in the vast old forests we've all but completely destroyed, making room for the now-7-billion of us humans living on this planet? If you've ever wandered under full cover of trees through an actual forest, and been enchanted by the few rays of sunlight that creep through the leaves above, and listened intently for the sounds of squirrels and birds -- then maybe you understand why it's not such a far jump to think there may have been even more of these wonders, once upon a time ago.

The Hobbit is simply a wonderful tale about a small, big-footed, nearly-soudless, oft-invisible person who was highly unlikely to ever go on any adventures. But thanks to his love of fireworks and smoke-rings, he struck up a conversation with a wizard one day who sort of fooled him into going on an adventure with 13 dwarves . . . to retrieve a long-lost treasure under a mountain, to slay a dragon, and to save a few towns and races of peoples along the way. What Bilbo learned, and who he became along the way, are absolutely delightful, inspirational stories for any young person who wonders if he/she could ever be brave enough to make a difference in the world, or help other people, or accomplish frightening, daunting tasks. For fantasy lovers, it just doesn't get better than this!
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