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The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2008

    A Fine Presentation of Two Peerless Classics

    This collection contains the two most famous works of J.R.R. Tolkien--The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. When we read through the pages of these books, we discover a living world of wonder. We watch as an initially unwilling Hobbit traveler (Bilbo Baggins) searches for treasure with a company of Dwarves, and comes across a ring--a Ring of Power, filled with evil, and one which could lead to the rule of darkness if it ever returns to its maker, the Dark Lord Sauron. Now some few people who really think they are so 'intellectually superior', or 'have more demanding taste', or whatever title of arrogance they try to give themselves, often dismiss this fascinating myth as 'children's stories', and that if one was to read a real novel, they would never return to such 'rubbish'. Well, I pity them, for they (like the Cynic in Hawthorne's 'The Great Carbuncle')must look at everything through dark spectacles, not allowing themselves to experience the beauty of this myth. It is not just a tale of magic and imaginary creatures. It is a tale of good and evil, and not just a 'Guy in White vs. Guy in Black' kind of story. It shows the subtlety of evil, how it can worm its way into even the hearts of the most honest person. It shows how good can strengthen a person, and how love can allow one to bear a multitude of burdens. I have read many novels (A Tale of Two Cities, Lord of the Flies, The Scarlet Letter, and On his Own being some of the finer examples), and although good ones are compelling, none that I have read would make me turn away from Middle-Earth. It is not just a 'children's story' (though most children enjoy it), but an enthralling study in the nature of mankind, and the forces that shape him. Now, on to this particular presentation of these books! This boxed set by Houghton Mifflin is very nice. The design (with its beautiful cover illustrations by Alan Lee) and the layout of the books is fitting, and the size is convenient, and yet conveys a sense of expansiveness. This all adds to the experience of the legend, and I am grateful that such a fine edition has been released. ----Ryan Robledo Author of the Aelnathan

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2008


    This is by far the greatest book(besides the Bible) that has ever been written. Some people say the bagging's of the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings are a bit boring, but I myself think them some of the best parts. They are the parts that introduce you to the characters of the story and tell you a lot about the author himself. If you ever wanted to read a fantasy this world be the one.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2007


    WOW! These books are absolutely amazing! The beginning of The Hobbit as well as The Fellowship of the Ring are a bit boring, but once you work your way through the beginning it's amazing the entire rest of the book! You'll never be able to put any of them down! I'm not a person that can read books more than once, but no matter how many times I read The Lord of the Rings I always leanr something new from the incredible detail. I recommend this to everyone and anyone. Much better than the movies. Even if you don't like the movies you will like the books!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2005

    the greatest novel with the greatest message

    This is quite simply the best book ever written and I've read hundreds and hundreds of books. The Lord of The Rings is not only detailed, and hugely entertaining, but it has a very important message of what life could be without the evils of modern corporate capitalism, industry, pollution, and the many other evils that exist in today's poisoned world. While the book is a work of fiction, it is loaded with themes which are enormously relevant and the book in the end has a message that is hopeful. The Lord of the Rings is completely unique. There is no other piece of literature like it and it is also fun to read and incredibly entertaining which is why so many people love this story and read the book over and over during their lifetime (not to mention have their kids read it). People will still be reading and talking about this book a thousand years from now. Count on that! Okay so the Lord of the Rings is the best piece of fiction ever written. The only other thousand plus page books that come close to this amazing story are The Count of Monte Crisco (2nd best book ever), The Stand, and The Witching Hour. While these other over 1000 page books are great, they are a very distant 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place. The Lord of The Rings is in a class by itself and a timeless literary masterpiece. Anybody who tells you otherwise has no taste. W.H Auden said that, not me. He said that he would never trust the literary taste or opinion of a person who did not enjoy reading The Lord of The Rings. By the way, Peter Jackson's movies are great...phenomenal in fact,but they pale in comparison to Tolkiens books. My hunch is that Peter Jackson would be the first to agree with me on this point as he made the movies as a tribute to his favorite book, The Lord of The Rings. If I am correct the 3rd movie, The Return of The King won a best picture academy award, and all of the LOTR movies were nominated. Again these great movies do not even begin to capture the detail and greatness of the book. Tolkien was a genius and his books have brought joy and hope to millions of people. The world has too many men and women in positions of power and authority whose values are similar to that of Sauroman and Sauron. There are not enough people like Gandalf, Frodo, Samwise, Aragorn, Elrond, Galadriel and TreeBeard. Perhaps the most human of all of the charachters in the Lord of The Rings is Boromir who despite all of his flaws in the end finds his way back on to the path of redemption. We can learn so much from his story as well as the stories of all of the wonderful main charachters (both good and evil). Middle earth(the natural world which God created and man destroyed) is no longer here and The Ents have been destroyed(nobody loves the woods anymore), Tolkien's great book reminds of us that there was a time when middle earth was real and gives readers the hope that even the smallest of people can change the course of the future. The importance of fellowship and frienship are continually stressed by Tolkien. This is also hugely relevant and something we can all learn from! There are so many other great messages and quotes from this book. In spite of its literary genius, what keeps people reading this book again and again is it simply put is an amazing, marvelous story!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 14, 2013

    The stories speak for themselves, A-1! But as for the product,

    The stories speak for themselves, A-1! But as for the product, I gave it as a gift and the receiver, a history buff, was absolutely ecstatic! The product presents beautifully and the size of the books is perfect for travel. I would recommend this boxed set to anyone!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2011

    Must Read This Timeless Classic

    While at times these magnificent works can be a bit dry, overall these books are a must read for anyone who considers themselves a lover of literature. This review is part of an 18-week class that I am taking at Crafton Hills Community College in Southern California in hopes of depicting the benefits of both reading the books and watching the movies. While this fast paced class does not exactly let a student really sit down and pick apart the books, it still allowed us to study how much an author can put into his works. I have read all four books twice and seen the movies, both theatrical and extended edition, multiple times. Tolkein takes his readers into an in-depth world that has something for everyone. Whether your cup of tea is the heroic battles of Helms Deep or Minith Tirith, the romance between fair Arwen and the rugged Aragorn, or the constant devotion of friends seen throughout the entire series, there is something for you! The structures of the books themselves can be a bit difficult to follow because of their lack of chronological order and that is why the film adaptations of Peter Jackson make understanding the books a great deal easier. There are a few liberties they took with the films, but following each book exactly would lead to several tedious movies that spanned over six hours each. I personally feel that watching the movies first is a bit more helpful as one can take what they have seen on screen and put an image to it when they read the books. The story lines are not identical in certain places, but it is not hard to find your way through the books by any means if one has seen the films. Tolkein created in-depth characters that everyone can relate to in some shape or form even though he includes foreign races of elves, dwarves, orcs, and ents. The books do give, unfortunately, such great detail that at times it can be a little repetitive and monotonous. They are large books and take a bit of time to read. There is no breezing through them. Even The Hobbit, which is supposed to be a children's book, is quite long. Keeping that in mind, the movies are also very long especially when one watches the extended versions but they do a wonderful job of grabbing one's attention and never letting go. I highly recommend reading the books and watching the movies to understand the vastness of this world that Tolkein created. They take some time but in the end are well worth it, leaving the reader wanting more or the viewer wanting to watch the films again and again. They are truly a timeless work of art that will carry on through the years.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2007

    The Greatest Set of Books There Ever Was

    I don't even know where to begin. This is simply one of the most amazing trilogies it has ever been my immense pleasure to read. Young or old, this is a series everyone should read. The strange, foreign world of Middle Earth, so distant and yet so much like our own, ensnares everyone's attention from the pulse-pounding first page right to the incredible conclusion.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2013

    The best epic fantasy ever written. Simply amazing. 

    The best epic fantasy ever written. Simply amazing. 

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  • Posted December 16, 2013

    What nitwit hasn't read The Hobbit? I would argue that no book,

    What nitwit hasn't read The Hobbit?

    I would argue that no book, novel, novella or Sunday cartoon has ever been written by man or beast that does not derive directly from J.R.R Tolkien’s “The Hobbit.” Except my own works, of course, like “The Spoils of Babylon” which is entirely original, distinctive, soul-crushing, tent-raising and writ in good ‘ole American English to boot. My works aside, I challenge the readers of this website to find a single novel of any literary value that does not contain Tolkien’s literary revelations such as opening with a relatable character, embarking on a journey, monsters (symbolic?), mountains, meals, love of inanimate objects, conflict, more characters, flashbacks and, most importantly, barrels. 

    “The Catcher in Rye?” A direct rip-off. “1984?” A copy, made carbon. Try reading “Jane Eyre” after a stint in Middle Earth. You’ll feel like you never left. “The Grapes of Wrath.” “Sweet Valley High.” “Oedipus Rex.” “Winnie the Pooh.” “Deliverance.” The list stretches longer than that chubby Hobbit road to The Lonely Mountain. Where in hellfire has all mankind’s creativity gone? 

    However, when I learned that Tolkien had devised an entirely unique alphabet for his Elvish hermaphrodite creations, I felt compelled to create my lexicon for an unbelievable, yet entirely believable alien race. What sprung forth in a moment of scotch-induced brilliance was a series of glyphs and scribbles that would later be used in the blockbuster film, Stargate. It is a combination of wingdings and consonants that remains one of the most maddeningly indecipherable codes to date. 

    So here’s a hearty pour of Bagpipes O’Toole for the dearly departed and his Hobbit, the veritable blueprint of dramatic archetype, the foundation for narrative masterpiecery, not including any of my own great works which could never be pigeonholed by a linear plot or even anything remotely replicatable, due to their deep catharsis and sheer, disgusting ingenuity.

    With undbound appreciation and wonder,

    Eric Jonrosh, author, director, team leader of “The Spoils of Babylon,” airing on IFC, January the 9th, 2014

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2012

    Great Set !!!

    Recieved in a timely matter and my son loves the all the books.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2012

    Wonderful! Full of adventure!

    Evil goblins, beautiful elves,magic wizards, and much more! Thats what's in store for anyone who reads J.R.R Tolkien's The Hobbit and The Lord of The Rings. Reading them has been very enjoyable, a true classic. I highly recommend these books for anyone who loves adventure, comedy, and magic.

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  • Posted May 23, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Fabulous Story and Character!

    These books are fantastic and I highly recommend them. The story is in depth and the characters are the kind that you feel a connection with.
    However many people find these book hard to read through and the first time I read them was in middle school. I admit I was the kind of person to skip, what I thought at the time were, the boring parts. But as I recently read these books again I read every line and I have to say I'm glad I did. These books are so detailed that you feel this could have actually been a true story. So if you are the kind of person who has the time to really read every line then I recommend you read it. And if you are the person who was like me in middle school, then read it anyway. It's worth it no matter what. Tolkien has created a world unlike any other and everyone should be a part of it.

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  • Posted May 22, 2011

    First Glance at Tolkien

    Review of Tolkien

    I am a community college student in California, and I am taking a fiction class based on "Lord of the Rings." The class includes reading the three books in the series also including the prelude, "The Hobbit" as reading material. The course also includes watching the films and having discussions on the differences and alterations to the story to fit the format of film. For part of the class's final project is to write a review of the books to either recommend them or the films.
    Before the class I had never read the books or seen the movies. Not having lived under a rock for my entire life, I am well aware of the story line of the franchise and know how the story goes. I made a point to read the books before I watched the films so that everything I thought when I read the book was my own vision as opposed to Peter Jackson's.
    Overall I was impressed by the books. I found they were well written and fairly complex with the back stories, legend, and invented language making the reading more than just an assignment. The thing I found most entertaining was the difference in intended reader between "The Hobbit" and "Lord of the Rings."
    "Hobbit" is a children's book and was my personal favorite of the series. It was an easy read and as a student of children's literature I was able to relate the book with more of what I have been reading as of late. The book is fun and the story line is relatively tame. The tales and songs throughout are entertaining. In comparison to the rest of the franchise there's nothing to serious about the plot. The heaviest it gets is Thorin's death at the end, and that's nothing compared to the plot to come. The part I admire Tolkien as a writer for is with a basic children's book the building blocks are set and prepared to establish a world and history to create the "epic quest" in "The Lord of the Rings".
    As far as the trilogy goes I enjoyed the books. With no surprise I enjoyed the books more than the films. One reason was, I liked the character Tom Bombadill, and didn't like the decision to exclude him in the film. A personal motto of mine is books can take someone further into another world than a movie which is why I prefer a book to a movie based on that book.
    My overall opinion for this review is the books are well written, and leave a lot of room for others to pick up and run with Middle Earth. "The Hobbit", like I said, was my favorite. But if you're like me and never picked up the books, I would say its worth the time and the class has introduced me to a lot of good material. The films are well done as well, but there is no substitute for picking up and reading a book. In this case picking up and reading, four books.

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  • Posted May 11, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    The One Book---You Won't Wanna Throw into Mt. Doom

    This review is part of an assignment for the 18 week Tolkien Fiction class I took at a community college. We were required to give our opinion on a popular book site. A bit of background: I have read all three books and seen all three movies. We discussed the books in length. As such, I feel that I am-in the most humble of ways-knowledgeable on what I am about to say.
    If you have not read these books you are missing out. Not only are they a cultural staple and beautifully rendered, they have a bit of everything in them. They are not just for nerds or old, boring English gentlemen. These books are not only the highest quality but in-depth, structured and splendid works of fiction. If you are a fan of adventure books, myths, action, and historical fiction, then this book should appeal to you. It is a book that applies to many different aspects in life. It is about friendship, bonding, the destruction of evil and a ring of imaginable power. While it does read slowly and could potentially take a while (it took me two days to get from the Hobbit to the end of the Lord of the Rings books but I am a very fast reader) it is worth the effort.
    Since I had seen the movies before I read the books I would recommend, if you haven't seen the movies to read the book first. If that is not the case, be prepared for the liberties that the movie took on the timeline of the book. They are, in essence, the same monster but vastly different in some aspects. The books do not have such a neat timeline and you will (in Lord of the Rings) find yourself jumping back in time to follow new characters at certain points. The Hobbit, which is the prequel to the Lord of the Rings adventures, is much simpler and straight forward. I found myself wishing for more details (you will not hunger for details in LoTRs) on certain aspects of the journey. The Hobbit is excellent reading for a parent and child. Lord of the Rings might be too mature for some younger readers as if includes some very grisly characters and battles.
    If you have read these books already and have not seen the movies I recommend sitting down and watching them all. While most book adapted for the big screen disappoint me, I felt the LoTR trilogy really shown. It was well made with a wonderful cast. The parts they chose to change were well thought out and the cast even learned some Elvish for their parts. It is truly beautiful work and it takes nothing away from the reading experience.
    With summer coming up, these books will be welcomed on long plane rides, trips in the car or as a way to entertain yourself when you have melted into the couch and the remote is too far away-or they are only showing reruns of Jersey Shore. While the Hobbit is by far my favorite, I did enjoy all four of the books. (Originally Tolkien meant for the Trilogy to be one whole book, so it isn't so much a trilogy as a very long book.)

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  • Posted May 10, 2011

    One of the best fantasy novels you will ever encounter

    I am a college student from a community college in California and I am writing this review in regards to an assignment for the course. The course was strictly on the four main works of J.R.R. Tolkien being his Lord of the Rings Series including "The Hobbit". I have read all four books and viewed all three of the movies. I strongly recommend these books to anyone who is at all in the very least interested in works of fiction and fantasy. This series goes beyond any work that has been encountered today due to Tolkien's vast amount of lore and back stories that make up the series as a whole. The books definitely give the reader new insights into Tolkien's Middle-earth and tells a tale of adventure, friendship, companionship, loss and gain, new found potential in ones abilities, and hope. The story tells of a dangerous ring in which a fellowship of nine set out to destroy and all of the characters encounter hardships and obstacles that are massive in many ways. Tolkien is extremely detailed in the way he describes the many different sceneries that are encountered throughout the whole of the four stories and the battles in which the characters are drawn into and must fight for their lives and the lives of all Middle-Earth! These books are quite fascinating and I recommend to read all of them, even if you already viewed the films. There is so much more in the books that can be learned and I believe it really helped me understand the movies more because I know what some of the references in the films are too. The books really help with further understanding of the films. My favorite character is definitely Gandalf because he has his way of dealing with things and seems to always be there to help out a friend, even if it's not how you think. There is a definite benefit to viewing the movies and reading the books because the movies help bring to life some of the hard things to envision within the books, like the battle of Minas Tirith or some of the more gruesome characters like Gollum and the Ring Wraiths. It's really amazing to see and read these books and it was a definite experience I would like to repeat! I've seen the movies previous to the course but with further discussion I have learned to really love these books and appreciate all of the life work that Tolkien had dedicated himself to, in order to write these novels. My favorite book was definitely "Return of the King" because it's the end of it all and The Lord of the Rings are a great piece of work and it was really gratifying to see these books come to a grand finale.

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  • Posted March 31, 2011

    Some of the best books EVER!

    One of the greatest books of all times, I love this trilogy. It's probably my favorite read. I would def suggest this series to anyone. It has a good mix of fantasy, suspense, action-adventure, and all the things that make a book great!

    If you have been living under a rock and you've never read it... do yourself a favor and run to the bookstore.

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  • Posted November 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    What can I say it's Tolkien

    Not really much to say here most people know about Llord of the rings" form the movies unless you've lived under a rock. If you wanting to read the books start with "The hobbit" I personally like it more than the others. These are not see dick run books. Be prepared to invest some time but the reward is worth the effort. If you're a fantasy fan than reading these books is a must as you will be reading the stories from which all modern fantasy has sprung.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2009

    Amazing set!!!!

    This is the best set of books I've ever read. The covers also are amazing and beautiful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2009

    Great read

    One of the great fantasy reads of all time. Escape from reality through this wonderful journey through Middle-Earth.

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  • Posted November 11, 2008

    One of the Greatest books of all time.

    This book is responsible for the Fantasy genre, this book is one of if not the greatest fantasy book of all time. For anyone who has ever had an interest in Fantasy reading this is absolutely a must read. And for anyone who hasn't had an interest in reading Fantasy, if you read this book you will have an almost immediate interest.

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