What a Great Adventure

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien (1937)

Is this a review?  A critique?  Or perhaps a showering of love?  It could be considered all three and, at the same time, none of them at all.  We want to discuss our thoughts, feelings, emotions, likes, and dislikes of our most recent endeavor:  the completion of The Hobbit. 

Being a book that was written for children, it’s not a terribly long book, but it isn’t a book that we have read often, especially not compared to The Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter.  So, jumping back into this story was a fun adventure.  This is a great book filled with fun, laughs, wild adventure, death defying feats, a dragon, and most importantly a Hobbit.  It seems so fittingly wonderful that the smallest creature would make such a huge impact on the world.  Beyond the obvious excitement the book follows, there is that theme, no matter how small you are, you can still do great and amazing things.  Don’t believe us?

Well, for Bilbo Baggins’ case, over the course of a year, he traveled with 13 Dwarves across Middle-earth, narrowly escaped 3 monstrous Trolls, dwelt with the fair Elves of Rivendell in the house of Elrond, survived the twisting caverns of Goblins in the Misty Mountains, riddled his way past Gollum, found the Ring, escaped Wargs and more Goblins, was carried by a great Eagle, stayed the night with a great bear, dared the dense forest of Mirkwood, saved the Dwarves from countless giant spiders, snuck his way into the Elven kingdom of Mirkwood, rescued the Dwarves from a seemingly inescapable captivity, floated the river to Lake-town, discovered the ancient key-hole to the secret passage into the Lonely Mountain, burgled treasure from Smaug, survived a close encounter with the great dragon, saved the Dwarves from the dragons wrath and anger, discovered Smaug’s only weakness, found the Arkenstone, helped Thorin become King Under the Mountain, fought for peace between the Elves, Men, and Dwarves, fought in/made his way to safely through the Battle of Five Armies, brought Thorin to a realization of kindness and peace, helped bring peace and prosperity to the lands surrounding the Lonely Mountain, and finally made the long journey back to his home under the Hill.

Bilbo, an unassuming Hobbit, went there and back again, he helped fulfill that prophecy of the King Under the Mountain returning and bringing riches forth.  It is a wide world out there, but this young Hobbit ventured through it and prospered himself.  Overall, we think the biggest theme from The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings hits on the idea that the smallest creature can change the course of history.  For us, that is an incredibly encouraging thought.  If a Hobbit can do all of that, then there’s endless possibilities to what we can accomplish.  Yes, it’s just a story, but we ask you, what’s wrong with getting positive motivation from it?

One of the best parts about The Hobbit is witnessing the character growth of Bilbo Baggins.  It’s clear as day, but it still gets us excited when we read this story.  Bilbo goes from a timid, uptight, and somewhat pompous Hobbit to a spider slaying, treasure burgling, facer of dragons.  It’s a complete 180° change, if you ask us, and it is incredibly awesome to read.  We couldn’t be prouder when Bilbo slowly, but surely, gains the respect of his Dwarven companions.  But, when Bilbo starts coming up with plans, making suggestions, when the Dwarves turn to him for guidance?  That’s when we see Bilbo turn into the leader they need.  Yes, Thorin is widely known as the “leader” of this Dwarven company, but in times of great need he turned to Bilbo to get them out of Mirkwood and face Smaug.  Make no mistake, Bilbo has got to be the bravest Hobbit since Bandobras “Bullroarer” Took.  This change makes Bilbo somewhat of an outcast in Hobbiton, but he didn’t care he had faced dragons, goblins, giant spiders, trolls, and wargs, ill-mannered Hobbits didn’t frighten him like they used to.  We have to give props to this Hobbit, he ends up becoming a straight boss.  Even in The Lord of the Rings, when the Council of Elrond was discussing what to do with the Ring he was the first person to stand up and say “I’ll take it.”  Bilbo was ready to accept responsibility for his part in this story and bring an end to it.  Without a doubt Bilbo is our favorite Hobbit in Middle-earth, yes Frodo and Sam are great, but for us Bilbo sets the tone for an adventurous Hobbit and we love seeing how his story begins in The Hobbit. 

To bring this long winded discussion to an end, The Hobbit is a great book, very different from The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, or any other story in Middle-earth that Tolkien had written, and for us, that makes this book extremely special.  It has adventure, suspense, fun riddles, comical moments, Elves, Wizards, Dwarves, and a great Hobbit hero.  Now that we’ve finished this book we have a strong urge to start it back over again, just to feel those familiar emotions.  However, other books are begging to be read, so we must say goodbye to The Hobbit, for now.

Thank you so much for your time, let us know what book your reading right now, what recommendations you have for us?  Have you read The Hobbit before?  What did you think?  Let us know and let’s continue the discussion.

Remember, renewed shall be blade that was broken.

– The Wandering One

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