The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Hobbit

By: J.R.R. Tolkien

Synopsis: Whisked away from his comfortable hobbit-hole by Gandalf the wizard and a band of dwarves, Bilbo Baggins finds himself caught up in a plot to raid the treasure hoard of Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon…

Format: The Hobbit is the prequel to the Lord of the Rings series. It follows the adventure of Bilbo Baggins as he grows from humble homebody to the barrel-riding burglar of the Lonely Mountain. My edition was printed in 1999 by HarperCollinsPublishers.  It is 310 pages long.

My Thoughts: What can you say about this book that is not positive? This book, as well as the Lord of the Rings, literally redefined the fantasy genre. This book at once takes you away on a magical journey, yet leaves you with the feeling that everything that happens in it is real and true. Despite the dangers in the world of Middle-Earth, you yearn to be there and experience this world in-person. You wish to meet these characters, face to face, and have long discussions about anything with them.

In case you haven’t picked up on it yet, I really like The Hobbit. This was the book that brought me into the fantasy world (one I haven’t left since!). The characters feel like family to me. As I picture myself having created a novel, I always wish I would have written something half as compelling as this book.

I know the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit have been adapted into movies (I watch them often) but please, read this book. Not only is it better than the movies, it is also better than the movies! If you want an adventure involving the noble battle of good versus evil, with epic heroes and terror-inspiring villains, this is the book for you. This book will make you feel like you have learned something while dreaming. If you want more information about this just do a quick google search. They use this book to teach in schools for crying out loud!

Check it out and let me know if you loved it as much as I have!!

Hiatus Complete

Well…It has been a while. I have not forgotten of the intent of this blog, nor even this blog. Things have seem to just exploded for the last while, and are only now returning to a level of calm where I can return to my interests! I will shortly have another review completed, but to give you an idea of where I have been… I told you all that the intent of this blog was to challenge everyone to write something. November is a big month for that, and I have been busy.

From all of the ideas I have written down, to all the ideas still waiting their turn (in nothing resembling an orderly line), it sometimes feels like my head might burst. With all of this stuff going on however I have realized one thing. Titles suck. More specifically, thinking of a title for something is hard work. Now don’t get me wrong, a title is very important. I am just saying if it is a skill from birth, I missed that memo.

I have a slight problem with working on something that does not have a title. Everywhere you look says “DO NOT CREATE A TITLE FIRST” – Whole Internet. I just find I cannot think without a title for something, and it can’t just be Generic Working Title Idea #1. I have to have an amazing title on a blank document or that document is destined for blankness.

So that being said, I am back and ready to read/write! If you have ideas or suggestions let me know below, if not I will continue to quietly work on The End of Our Times – A Hopefully Interesting Story in my Mind. I know it is long, it is a WORKING title. Haven’t you people followed the Internet’s advice?

Winterbirth by Brian Ruckley

WinterBirth

By: Brian Ruckley

Synopsis: An uneasy truce exists between the thanes of the True Bloods. Now, as another winter approaches, the armies of the Black Road march south from their exile beyond the Vale of Stones. For some, war will bring swift and violent death. Others will not hear the clash of swords or see the corpses strewn over the fields. They will see an opportunity to advance their own ambitions. But all, soon, will fall under the shadow that is descending. 

For while the storm of battle rages, one man is following a path that will awaken a terrible power in him – and his legacy will be written in blood.

Format: Winterbirth is the first book in the Godless World trilogy. The book is 654 pages long, and contains a dark story with a twisting plot. It was published by Orbit in 2006.

My Thoughts: Brian Ruckley introduces a very well built world in his first installment of the trilogy. You can feel yourself standing beside the characters, observing them. From the descriptions of the mountains, to the trailing of a cloak in the sea, nothing that would remove the reader from this world was added. The descriptions and imagery used in this book really set the tone of what was happening in the plot, with the world becoming darker with the continuance of the plot. 

Another impressive feat in this novel is the characters. Whether I liked or disliked them, all seemed like real people, with real motivations and desires. The characters also liked to blur the lines between good and bad, allowing the reader to sympathize with a character that has committed heinous acts, that would disgust and terrify anyone in the real world.  

With no true “main character” the viewpoint of the reader jumps through most of the introduced characters, allowing a multiple viewpoint approach to all problems in the plot. It was cool to be able to understand what each character wanted out of a situation, when you know not everyone was going to get what they wanted. It allowed a tension to develop between the characters that the reader could feel, as if they actually knew the characters personally. This allowed a deep understanding of the plot, that makes this book very enjoyable.

The plot, while dark and bloody, was created in such a way that the reader could never anticipate what would happen. Characters would die often enough that any injury becomes questioned on whether we lose a character or not, and every battle had no pre-determined outcome. I found this built the anticipation, and made me reach for the next book in the trilogy as soon as I finished this one. Overall, I thought this was an excellent book that should provide entertainment to many fantasy readers.

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments below!