I’m not really a major fantasy nerd by heart but I’ve always been told to read it if you want to become a writer. So I did, finding myself perplexed but impressed at the same time. While not as grim or action packed as the Lord of the Rings trilogy, it is in fact an epic adventure to the core and I love that Tolkien writes in a particular style of not dumbing his world down for us to understand it, he challenges you to experience it for yourself. I respect that.
Bilbo Baggins is an ordinary hobbit in The Shire, boring, polite, and something of a homebody. That it is until Gandalf the wizard shows up, and then after that the pesky dwarves show up to his cozy hobbit-hole, requesting his presence in their party as a master thief on Gandalf’s behalf. Bilbo hasn’t done a damn thing like thieving. The dwarves, led by Thorin, a monarch who’s family was forced out of his kingdom and castle full of gold by a badass dragon named Smaug. Thorin wants Smaug gone and his shit back. The group sets off, facing trolls, spiders, a sweet barrel ride, and an important encounter with Gollum and a ring he is obsessed with. The whole time Bilbo grows into the role Gandalf set up for him, armed only with a glowing sword and the ring that let’s him become invisible, but can he raise to the challenge and defeat Smaug?
The Hobbit is a simple classic that has a great range of characters, setting, and world building. Of the three times I’ve read it, it does get better each time I read it. It is a prequel to the Lord of the Rings trilogy but I love that it’s not a A-B prequel, which was a huge reason I loved that direction for Prometheus ; you can read it perfectly fine as a standalone book. The book was cut into three full fledged, 2 hour plus movies even though the book is just about 300 pages. What almost drew me to the movies was Benedict Cumbatch’s portrayal as Smaug, which was terse but perfect; friends that are way more into Tolkien than I am told me the trilogy was a waste of time in the end. I highly recommend the book, especially if you are a aspiring writer, but I can tell you it’s ok to skip the movies. May the gaming gods bring you glory.