The Journey to Smaug

Review of The Hobbit; J.R.R. Tolkien; Harper Collins 2012; First published by George Allen and Unwin 1937; Rs 299; p 365

– Shana Susan Ninan

With fanciful illustrations and well thought out maps, and a superb adventure plot, Tolkien’s book doesn’t fail to please kids and adults alike. Whenever there’s news of a movie adaptation of a novel, I try to read the book before heading to the cinema. Here, too, I’m sure the book’d prove to be better.

Bilbo Baggins the hobbit is woken up to a rather hilarious morning after a visit by Gandalf, announcing that the hobbit is to ‘assist’ certain ‘somebodys’ in tracking a certain treasure. Little does he realise what he’s in for as the dwarves start trickling into his neat home. All this thoughts of a quiet bread and bacon breakfast is ruined as he finds more than a dozen dwarves swarming into the hobbit-hole, and super-hungry ones at that.

Talk about food, as you read along, you get this nagging feeling that this plot was once upon a bedtime story the author probably told his kids. Where else would hobbits have bacon for breakfast? And other processed foods. But the story is an absolutely engaging one, taking us through a journey across forests, mountains and rivers.

The hobbit isn’t one for adventure, he’d rather prefer his comfy bed and warm hut to facing the dangers in the wild. At first, even the dwarves don’t take him too seriously. However, as they travel together, confront dangers as a pack, and finally when the hobbit’s instincts are honed in the jungle, and he saves the dwarves many a times, they’re convinced of his innate powers.

The finding of the ring by Bilbo turns events on the head – armed with the power to be invisible, he takes things a step further by venturing to lead the group. And rightly so. The various escapades and active narration keep us glued to the pages.

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Rating: 7.0/10 (6 votes cast)
The Journey to Smaug, 7.0 out of 10 based on 6 ratings

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This entry was posted on Thursday, December 5th, 2013 at 7:09 pm and is filed under Children's Classic, Fantasy, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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