Classics Club: The Hobbit

After almost 3 months another book  towards my Classic Club Challenge is done. For those who aren’t familiar The Classics Club is a challenge to pick classics (at least 50) and read them all over the next 5 years. For those who read my initial list you know it’s more of a “books I always wanted to read or re-read.” Most of my list is re-reads of books I either loved as a kid or want to re-vist, books I was supposed to read, and books that I love the author and want to experience more of their work. The plan is to have my list of 50 all read by December 28, 2020.



The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien






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Why Agatha Christie is such Badass Female (and other fun facts)


Random Facts In No Particular Order

  • Christie wrote her first book when her sister Madge bet her she couldn’t
  • Once chloroformed a hedgehog that had become tangled up in her tennis net so she could free it.
  • One of the first British people to try modern day surfing.
  • Went to Iraq and Syria on archaeological digs with her 2nd husband
  •  Wrote 80 crime novels and story collections, 14 plays, and several other books.
  • She accepted the Presidency of the famous Detection Club in 1958 on the strict understanding that she would never have to make a speech.
  • She wrote the final Hercule Poirot book then had it stored in a bank vault during the second world war to protect it from Nazi bombs.


Why I Love And Then There Were None (and you should too!)

So for starters what is this glorious novel about you ask? Well, a group of 10 people are all invited to a remote island. These people are all wildly different but have one strong thing in common. They have all been complicit in another person’s death and escaped the claws(clamps?) of justice. During their first night on the island, the 8 guests and 2 servants are read their crimes by a gramophone recording and are informed they have been brought to the island to pay for their actions. They are then picked off one by one parallel to the ten deaths in the nursery rhyme, until there were none (boom). For example, “Ten little Indians went out to dine / One choked his little self and then there were nine.” By the time of the apparent last death, a confession, in the form of a postscript in the novel, reveals how the killings took place and who was ultimately responsible.


The Latest Movie Adaption (that is infinitely better than the 1945 adaption)

So the elephant in the room, the epilogue. Yes, it was altered slightly for the latest adaption but that’s a necessity to make it a coherent movie and still captivating. The movie takes what happens and shortens it and in doing so makes it more dramatic somehow. This doesn’t deviate enough to change the tone of the ending and it’s so great. The point of the adaption isn’t to re-guess a less fun ending, but to watch the performances and see how they make the story come to life. I’m really just thankful the ending was the same in spirit and they managed to make it just as dark as the book and let the viewer feel that murder is a terrible crime where you have physically taken a life and the toll that has on people.

Besides the ending, some other deaths and small details were changed, for the better in my opinion. It helped to move the story along and allow explanations without having to over-explain anything. Some things were moderned up a bit to remain just a dark and twisty and hopeless to modern viewers. Little things were changed and other things were amped up. People were less polite being stuck in a house with one another, Marston loved cocaine, and Vera and Lombard had a connection that was only implied in the book as a possibility.

While the scenery and script were awesome, the casting was great with a lot of bigger-name actors who work well in an ensemble. The major standouts include:

  • Charles Dance (Game of Thrones and every British show you’ve ever seen) portrays Judge Wargrave
  • Douglas Booth (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) is cast as Anthony Marston, who is the only person in this entire movie allowed to have any fun.
  • Maeve Dermody plays Vera Claythorne (imdb has a list of things I don’t recognize)
  • And finally the true standout in my mind, the lovely Aidan Turner as Lombard. Known for Poldark and playing Kili, the best dwarf. Also major and all around appreciated change from the book is they decided to add in a nakedish scene for him and I greatly approve

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So what is your favorite Christie book? Did you watch the adaption and hate it love it or were just going to love it anyway because of this scene and the heartbreak?