I have read this book so many times it’s hard to review it.
I’m not going into plot because we all know how it goes. I used to read this almost yearly but the movies kind of ruined it for me (even though I love them). I had certain images in my head but they were all replaced by the actors in the movies which took away some of the enjoyment for me, even though most of them were very well cast. Luckily, enough time has passed that I was able to enjoy it, it was great getting swept up into the adventure again.
There are very few books that you feel the weight of the worldbuilding in the background as much as this, there probably isn’t any really that actually took so much of one person’s life to conceive. Little comments scattered throughout that mention events long ago that bring so much depth to the story. Yes the language can kind of be a bit stilted but that is deliberate and makes it feel like our own epic classics.
I much prefer Merry and Pippin in the books than the movies and Frodo is better too. Sam is as cool as always. I remember feeling the start was so slow when I was a kid reading these but now you see it’s only a few chapters, the story moves quite rapidly. I’m still not a huge fan of Tom Bombadil, I probably never will be, but I kind of understand his purpose.
I’d forgotten how laid back the journeying was in this part, it took years for Frodo to get going, they chilled for months in Rivendell and another month in Lothlorien. Really enjoying reading these again and looking forward to the stakes being raised in The Two Towers.
5 stars out of 5