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
So The Hobbit. Bilbo Baggins is a normal hobbit by all looks. He loves his peaceful life filled with routine and the familiar of home. When the wizard Gandalf appears at his door with Thorin and gang, Bilbo finds himself on an adventure. Along the way to the mountain to reclaim the dwarves gold from the dragon Smaug, Bilbo comes face-to-face with with orcs, and eagles, and men, and elves, and other mythical creatures he has only heard about in song.
What I love about The Hobbit is is that every time I read it I see something new. Even though it’s children’s literature I think that I can read it as an adult and still get something out of it a kajillion years after it was written (an accurate number) means everything and makes it a classic to me.
The world Tolkien is able to create and all of the fully formed characters are great but I think what works best in this novel is all of the “showing.” Tolkien tells you a little bit about each creature but it’s up to you to make your own decisions about them based how we see them interact with one another. The interactions end up almost always being humorous. Tolkien takes an inherently good view of the world in this novel and sometimes it’s just nice to read a book like that. Bilbo, the unlikely hero leaving home and showing what he can do, even when he is scared. He then (massive spoiler) makes it home a little different, but still Bilbo.
I know this isn’t a traditional review but I’m assuming most people are familiar with The Hobbit by now and if you aren’t it’s probably for a reason. All in all this one of my favorite children’s but not children’s books and I’m glad it was the one I read to ease myself back into classics and my list.
“There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West. Some courage and some wisdom, blended in measure. If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”
“Go back?” he thought. “No good at all! Go sideways? Impossible! Go forward? Only thing to do! On we go!” So up he got, and trotted along with his little sword held in front of him and one hand feeling the wall, and his heart all of a patter and a pitter.”
“Never laugh at live dragons, Bilbo you fool!”