Saturday, June 13, 2009

I've Finished Reading The Fellowship of the Ring

A few weeks ago, I began reading the first book of The Lord of the Rings trilogy. I have now finished it.

It is definitely not a modern novel, in the sense that it does not probe into the inner minds of the characters. And the many heroes of the novel are not flawed characters, nor filled with pathologies which preoccupy the writer. It reads more like Beowulf than anything else I have read, which makes sense given, Tolkein's background.

I found it to be a laborious read, and didn't really enjoy it. If I didn't feel a desire to become familiar with this tremendously influential book, I wouldn't have continued.

And it certainly is influential. I have now seen the origin of many of the stories that I have encountered before in derivative works.

I may later read The Two Towers, or not. For now, I shall address other books piling up in my now active reading list. They include a post-apocalyptic novel called One Second After by William R. Forstchen, about life after an EMP attack on America. Another is Robert Conroy's 1945, an alternate history in which a convention invasion of Japan by the Allies becomes necessary. And finally, there is Depth of Revenge, which is the tale of an Israeli nuclear ballistic missile submarine after a surprise nuclear attack obliterates the State of Israel.

5 comments:

Lance said...

In the many times I have ready LOTR, I always enjoyed TFOTR the least. TTT and ROTK continue getting better. I would suggest you read the whole "trilogy," since it is, in fact, one book that the publishers forced Tolkien to split up for financial reasons.

Earl said...

In reading the LOTR, one is well served by first reading The Hobbit. Self-contained, TH allows one to become familiar with the characters, some of the themes and much of the background that will form the setting and provide the dynamic for the LOTR.

larry said...

John,

I know you have a good knowledge of alternative history novels. Do you know of any based on Constantine losing the Milvian bridge battle in 312?

RevAnne said...

What Lance and Earl said. The novels of the trilogy are not self-contained.
Also, you can't really get a sense of the richness of the story from the movies. My husband still gripes about me turning to him after "ROTK" (with his backside numb from long hours of watching) and saying, "they left so much out!"
Love to know the answer to Larry's question, as well.

John said...

No, Larry, I don't know of any, nor have found any.