A Review of The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

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Oops! Forgot to add this XP

Why do I even bother reviewing popular books? XP Anyway, this is the long-overdue (since I finished reading The Hobbit a while ago), but I figured I may as well write it for you guys. I know it seems like I bash on the book a little near the middling and end portion of my review, but hey, this story earned five stars from me, so let that say what it will. 

Also, just a quick update, but looking at my about page now, you’ll see that the giant paragraph of recommended books that used to be there has now disappeared. This is because that was getting annoying, and since the creation of my Goodreads account, I figured that would be a much better format to do that in. So yeah. Enough of this rubbish. Enjoy. 🙂

The Hobbit is a fantasy/adventure novel written by J. R. R. Tolkien. Starring Bilbo Baggins, an unsuspecting hobbit who gets carried away into a journey he did not expect, The Hobbit will charm the hearts of anybody who enjoys a good, homely story. Full of adventure and exploration and discovery, The Hobbit is a classic in the genre of fantasy. Despite using simple language to craft a story that a ten-year-old could understand, Tolkien’s masterpiece appeals also to mature readers. And the unforgettable characters in this novel will entertain readers for generations to come.

The Hobbit is written in third-person past tense. This already sets the mood for an unsurprising method of storytelling. Adding even more to that classic feel, Tolkien has a very conversational style with the reader, occasionally breaking the fourth wall, though he does this in a very well-executed manner which does not distract from the rest of the story. Despite being set in Middle Earth, an unfamiliar world to someone new to The Lord of the Rings universe, Tolkien never once leaves the reader confused. New terms are explained through the story, and I never once felt like I was being lectured.

In terms of length, each chapter feels like a solid chunk which provides a firm foundation for the reader to progress onwards. The book itself feels whole, with nothing left out. All loose ends are tied by the end of the story, and it leaves the reader with a sense of completeness. Delving deeper, the sentence structure in The Hobbit is well-varied, with no sensation of repetition of structure. Overall, from a reader who enjoys long novels with a lot of material to chew on, I really enjoyed the length of The Hobbit.

The characters in The Hobbit are well-done, though the focus is most definitely placed on Bilbo. Despite not being super-developed, I feel that Tolkien did with his characters what the story required. A clear character arc can be seen with Bilbo, though it is not very pronounced. Tolkien played well with the dwarven lust for gold when he had Thorin keep everyone out. However, the battle with Smaug felt underplayed to me. The story had seemed to focus on reaching the mountain and defeating Smaug, but upon their arrival, Smaug seemed to get pushed aside to die after the first two encounters and that was it.

As for the story, I personally felt it was a little slow at times. This might be because I watched the movie before reading the book, but I was not really drawn in. It took more willpower than desire to read the next chapters in the story, though this is probably more of a problem with me than the book. However, near the end the pace picked up, and I finished the last part in a sitting.

What took the cake with The Hobbit though (and what earned it five stars from me), was the end of the story. The Hobbit has a beautiful ending which serves as an excellent finish for an adventure story: the beginning. Tolkien takes it right back to where it all started, and there he sets once again a familiar homely scene, and injects into it what had previously been unwanted guests. This tying back of the end to the beginning is what makes this story truly shine. Because of that this book earned five stars from me, and you’ll find it on my list of books on Goodreads, just in case you feel like checking it out yourself.

Tours yruly

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16 thoughts on “A Review of The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

    • lol. Goodness. A prerequisite huh? Well, I’d better get to work on The Two Towers and The Return of the King then. Though seeing as they are not in my possession, thus meaning I would have to borrow them from the library, I don’t think that is quite possible with my school-time reading speed. =P

      ~Michael Hollingworth
      Disce Ferenda Pati – Learn to endure what must be borne

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  1. This is a book I can read over and over again and never get bored of it. I love the movies a lot as well, but they hardly match up to the wonderfulness of the book.
    (And can I just say that I was cringing at every be verb in this post? TPS has ruined me.)

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    • The movies are pretty cool, but like you, I think I enjoy the book better.

      Aw man =/ I’m sorry about the be verbs. It’s just that I constrict myself so often with them for TPS assignments (and even in my fictional writing) that it’s nice to let loose once in a while. I’ll definitely try to cut down on them more though. Sorry! =/

      ~Michael Hollingworth
      Disce Ferenda Pati – Learn to endure what must be borne

      Like

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