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The Hobbit: A Surprisingly Dull Journey

Updated on August 10, 2019

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

Back in middle school when I started really getting into reading as a recreational hobby, there were a few books that acted like gateway drugs for me. There was Timeline by Michael Crichton, The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman and then of course there was The Lord of The Rings. And the Lord of the Rings is a fantastic book series and I heard so much about the Hobbit. For years, I heard nothing but good things and it somehow has been one of those books I’ve been meaning to read, but somehow kept getting pushed aside for other things I want to read. But recently Amazon put the book on sale for a dollar and it seemed it was the perfect time finally read it. So here is my review of the Hobbit by J. R.R. Tolkien.

So what is it about? It focuses on mild mannered Bilbo Baggins, a well off hobbit who lives in the Shire. He has an unlikely friendship with an wizard named Gandalf. One night Gandalf invites a dozen dwarves into Bilbo’s home and Bilbo unknowingly been assigned as their official burglar on their journey to defeat the dragon Smaug at the Lonely Mountain. The dwarves plan to take back the lost treasure and dwarf kingdom. Bilbo reluctantly agrees and off on their journey they go.

The good? It’s nice to return to the world of Middle Earth, and it’s great to see how the Bilbo did get the ring. And the flow of the story is nice. Unlike Lord of the Rings, Tolkien wrote this in a fashion that when read out loud, it would sound like a grandpa telling his grand kids a story. There was something very charming about that.

The bad? This story is rather bland. It’s not bad any means at all, but the story overall could not hook me no matter how hard I tried to like it. I found none of characters engaging. The action was boring. The story was anticlimactic. It was a very difficult read because the book is very dry to me which I found shocking given the praise I heard. As I read it, I wanted to be reading The Witcher, The Wayfarer Redemption, or even The Lord of Rings because they tell the same sort of story so much better. But this whole story is just dull, and I’m sure I’ll forget it entirely within a week because it left little, if no impact.

Overall, this may be a classic but it is just not good. It is just so soulless and boring, which is a shame because I tried so hard to see why it’s so beloved. It’s okay at best. There is nothing wrong with the story other than being so mediocre. I can’t recommend this as a must read, but if you stumble across it for free then take a look. Maybe you‘ll find something enjoyable here, like so many other people have, when I can't.

2 smoothies out of Four.

Overall Rating: A Surprisingly Dull Journey

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