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J.R.R. Tolkien's classic prelude to his Lord of the Rings trilogy
Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable, unambitious life, rarely traveling any farther than his pantry or cellar. But his contentment is disturbed when the wizard Gandalf and a company of dwarves arrive on his doorstep one day to whisk him away on an adventure. They have launched a plot to raid the treasure hoard guarded by Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon. Bilbo reluctantly ...
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J.R.R. Tolkien's classic prelude to his Lord of the Rings trilogy
Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable, unambitious life, rarely traveling any farther than his pantry or cellar. But his contentment is disturbed when the wizard Gandalf and a company of dwarves arrive on his doorstep one day to whisk him away on an adventure. They have launched a plot to raid the treasure hoard guarded by Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon. Bilbo reluctantly joins their quest, unaware that on his journey to the Lonely Mountain he will encounter both a magic ring and a frightening creature known as Gollum.
Written for J.R.R. Tolkien's own children, The Hobbit has sold many millions of copies worldwide and established itself as a modern classic.
The adventures of the well-to-do hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, who lived happily in his comfortable home until a wandering wizard granted his wish.
"A flawless masterpiece." The Times of London
Cut the cloth and tread on the fat!
Pour the milk on the pantry floor!
Leave the bones on the bedroom mat!
Splash the wine on every door!
Dump the crocks in a boiling bowl;
Pound them up with a thumping pole;
And when you've finished, if any are whole,
Send them down the hall to roll!
That's what Bilbo Baggins hates!
So, carefully! carefully with the plates!
And of course they did none of these dreadful things, and
everything was cleaned and put away safe as quick as lightning, while
the hobbit was turning round and round in the middle of the kitchen
trying to see what they were doing. Then they went back, and found
Thorin with his feet on the fender smoking a pipe. He was blowing the
most enormous smoke-rings, and wherever he told one to go, it went—up
the chimney, or behind the clock on the mantelpiece, or under the
table, or round and round the ceiling; but wherever it went it was
not quick enough to escape Gandalf. Pop! he sent a smaller smoke-ring
from his short clay-pipe straight through each one of Thorin's. Then
Gandalf's smoke-ring would go green and come back to hover over the
wizard's head. He had a cloud of them about him already, and in the
dim light it made him look strange and sorcerous. Bilbo stood still
and watched—he loved smoke-rings—and then he blushed to think how
proud he had been yesterday morning of the smoke-rings he had sent up
the wind over The Hill.
"Now for some music!" said Thorin. "Bring out the
Kili and Fili rushed for their bags and brought back little
fiddles; Dori, Nori, and Ori brought out flutes from somewhere inside
their coats; Bombur produced a drum from the hall; Bifur and Bofur
went out too, and came back with clarinets that they had left among
the walking-sticks. Dwalin and Balin said: "Excuse me, I left mine in
the porch!" "Just bring mine in with you!" said Thorin. They came
back with viols as big as themselves, and with Thorin's harp wrapped
in a green cloth. It was a beautiful golden harp, and when Thorin
struck it the music began all at once, so sudden and sweet that Bilbo
forgot everything else, and was swept away into dark lands under
strange moons, far over The Water and very far from his hobbit-hole
under The Hill.
The dark came into the room from the little window that
opened in the side of The Hill; the firelight flickered—it was April—
and still they played on, while the shadow of Gandalf's beard wagged
against the wall.
The dark filled all the room, and the fire died down, and the
shadows were lost, and still they played on. And suddenly first one
and then another began to sing as they played, deep-throated singing
of the dwarves in the deep places of their ancient homes; and this is
like a fragment of their song, if it can be like their song without
Far over the misty mountains cold
To dungeons deep and caverns old
We must away ere break of day
To seek the pale enchanted gold.
The dwarves of yore made mighty spells,
While hammers fell like ringing bells
In places deep, where dark things sleep,
In hollow halls beneath the fells.
For ancient king and elvish lord
There many a gleaming golden hoard
They shaped and wrought, and light they caught
To hide in gems on hilt of sword.
On silver necklaces they strung
The flowering stars, on crowns they hung
The dragon-fire, in twisted wire
They meshed the light of moon and sun.
Far over the misty mountains cold
To dungeons deep and caverns old
We must away, ere break of day,
To claim our long-forgotten gold.
Goblets they carved there for themselves
And harps of gold; where no man delves
There lay they long, and many a song
Was sung unheard by men or elves.
The pines were roaring on the height,
The winds were moaning in the night.
The fire was red, it flaming spread;
The trees like torches blazed with light.
The bells were ringing in the dale
And men looked up with faces pale;
Then dragon's ire more fierce than fire
Laid low their towers and houses frail.
The mountain smoked beneath the moon;
The dwarves, they heard the tramp of doom.
They fled their hall to dying fall
Beneath his feet, beneath the moon.
Far over the misty mountains grim
To dungeons deep and caverns dim
We must away, ere break of day,
To win our harps and gold from him!
As they sang the hobbit felt the love of beautiful things
made by hands and by cunning and by magic moving through him, a
fierce and a jealous love, the desire of the hearts of dwarves. Then
something Tookish woke up inside him, and he wished to go and see the
great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and
explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick. He
looked out of the window. The stars were out in a dark sky above the
trees. He thought of the jewels of the dwarves shining in dark
caverns. Suddenly in the wood beyond The Water a flame leapt up—
probably somebody lighting a wood-fire—and he thought of plundering
dragons settling on his quiet Hill and kindling it all to flames. He
shuddered; and very quickly he was plain Mr. Baggins of Bag-End,
He got up trembling. He had less than half a mind to fetch
the lamp, and more than half a mind to pretend to, and go and hide
behind the beer-barrels in the cellar, and not come out again until
all the dwarves had gone away. Suddenly he found that the music and
the singing had stopped, and they were all looking at him with eyes
shining in the dark.
"Where are you going?" said Thorin, in a tone that seemed to
show that he guessed both halves of the hobbit's mind.
"What about a little light?" said Bilbo apologetically.
"We like the dark," said all the dwarves. "Dark for dark
business! There are many hours before dawn."
"Of course!" said Bilbo, and sat down in a hurry. He missed
the stool and sat in the fender, knocking over the poker and shovel
with a crash.
"Hush!" said Gandalf. "Let Thorin speak!" And this is how
"Gandalf, dwarves and Mr. Baggins! We are met together in the
house of our friend and fellow conspirator, this most excellent and
audacious hobbit—may the hair on his toes never fall out! all praise
to his wine and ale! He paused for breath and for a polite remark
from the hobbit, but the compliments were quite lost on poor Bilbo
Baggins, who was wagging his mouth in protest at being called
audacious and worst of all fellow conspirator, though no noise came
out, he was so flummoxed. So Thorin went on:
"We are met to discuss our plans, our ways, means, policy and
devices. We shall soon before the break of day start on our long
journey, a journey from which some of us, or perhaps all of us
(except our friend and counsellor, the ingenious wizard Gandalf) may
never return. It is a solemn moment. Our object is, I take it, well
known to us all. To the estimable Mr. Baggins, and perhaps to one or
two of the younger dwarves (I think I should be right in naming Kili
and Fili, for instance), the exact situation at the moment may
require a little brief explanation—"
This was Thorin's style. He was an important dwarf. If he had
been allowed, he would probably have gone on like this until he was
out of breath, without telling any one there anything that was not
known already. But he was rudely interrupted. Poor Bilbo couldn't
bear it any longer. At may never return he began to feel a shriek
coming up inside, and very soon it burst out like the whistle of an
engine coming out of a tunnel. All the dwarves sprang up, knocking
over the table. Gandalf struck a blue light on the end of his magic
staff, and in its firework glare the poor little hobbit could be seen
kneeling on the hearth-rug, shaking like a jelly that was melting.
Then he fell flat on the floor, and kept on calling out "struck by
lightning, struck by lightning!" over and over again; and that was
all they could get out of him for a long time. So they took him and
laid him out of the way on the drawing-room sofa with a drink at his
elbow, and they went back to their dark business.
"Excitable little fellow," said Gandalf, as they sat down
again. "Gets funny queer fits, but he is one of the best, one of the
best—as fierce as a dragon in a pinch."
If you have ever seen a dragon in a pinch, you will realize
that this was only poetical exaggeration applied to any hobbit, even
to Old Took's great-grand-uncle Bullroarer, who was so huge (for a
hobbit) that he could ride a horse. He charged the ranks of the
goblins of Mount Gram in the Battle of the Green Fields, and knocked
their king Golfimbul's head clean off with a wooden club. It sailed a
hundred yards through the air and went down a rabbit-hole, and in
this way the battle was won and the game of Golf invented at the same
In the meanwhile, however, Bullroarer's gentler descendant
was reviving in the drawing-room. After a while and a drink he crept
nervously to the door of the parlour. This is what he heard, Gloin
speaking: "Humph!" (or some snort more or less like that). "Will he
do, do you think? It is all very well for Gandalf to talk about this
hobbit being fierce, but one shriek like that in a moment of
excitement would be enough to wake the dragon and all his relatives,
and kill the lot of us. I think it sounded more like fright than
excitement! In fact, if it had not been for the sign on the door, I
should have been sure we had come to the wrong house. As soon as I
clapped eyes on the little fellow bobbing and puffing on the mat, I
had my doubts. He looks more like a grocer than a burglar!"
Then Mr. Baggins turned the handle and went in. The Took side
had won. He suddenly felt he would go without bed and breakfast to be
thought fierce. As for little fellow bobbing on the mat it almost
made him really fierce. Many a time afterwards the Baggins part
regretted what he did now, and he said to himself: "Bilbo, you were a
fool; you walked right in and put your foot in it."
"Pardon me," he said, "if I have overheard words that you
were saying. I don't pretend to understand what you are talking
about, or your reference to burglars, but I think I am right in
believing" (this is what he called being on his dignity) "that you
think I am no good. I will show you. I have no signs on my door—it
was painted a week ago—, and I am quite sure you have come to the
wrong house. As soon as I saw your funny faces on the door-step, I
had my doubts. But treat it as the right one. Tell me what you want
done, and I will try it, if I have to walk from here to the East of
East and fight the wild Were-worms in the Last Desert. I had a great-
great-great-grand-uncle once, Bullroarer Took, and—"
"Yes, yes, but that was long ago," said Gloin. "I was talking
about you. And I assure you there is a mark on this door—the usual
one in the trade, or used to be. Burglar wants a good job, plenty of
Excitement and reasonable Reward, that's how it is usually read. You
can say Expert Treasure-hunter instead of Burglar if you like. Some
of them do. It's all the same to us. Gandalf told us that there was a
man of the sort in these parts looking for a Job at once, and that he
had arranged for a meeting here this Wednesday tea-time."
"Of course there is a mark," said Gandalf. "I put it there
myself. For very good reasons. You asked me to find the fourteenth
man for your expedition, and I chose Mr. Baggins. Just let any one
say I chose the wrong man or the wrong house, and you can stop at
thirteen and have all the bad luck you like, or go back to digging
He scowled so angrily at Gloin that the dwarf huddled back in
his chair; and when Bilbo tried to open his mouth to ask a question,
he turned and frowned at him and stuck out his bushy eyebrows, till
Bilbo shut his mouth tight with a snap. "That's right," said
Gandalf. "Let's have no more argument. I have chosen Mr. Baggins and
that ought to be enough for all of you. If I say he is a Burglar, a
Burglar he is, or will be when the time comes. There is a lot more in
him than you guess, and a deal more than he has any idea of himself.
You may (possibly) all live to thank me yet. Now Bilbo, my boy, fetch
the lamp, and let's have a little light on this!"
On the table in the light of a big lamp with a red shade he
spread a piece of parchment rather like a map.
"This was made by Thror, your grandfather, Thorin," he said
in answer to the dwarves' excited questions. "It is a plan of the
"I don't see that this will help us much," said Thorin
disappointedly after a glance. "I remember the Mountain well enough
and the lands about it. And I know where Mirkwood is, and the
Withered Heath where the great dragons bred."
"There is a dragon marked in red on the Mountain," said
Balin, "but it will be easy enough to find him without that, if ever
we arrive there."
"There is one point that you haven't noticed," said the
wizard, "and that is the secret entrance. You see that rune on the
West side, and the hand pointing to it from the other runes? That
marks a hidden passage to the Lower Halls." (Look at the map at the
beginning of this book, and you will see there the runes.)
"It may have been secret once," said Thorin, "but how do we
know that it is secret any longer? Old Smaug has lived there long
enough now to find out anything there is to know about those caves."
"He may—but he can't have used it for years and years."
"Because it is too small. 'Five feet high the door and three
may walk abreast' say the runes, but Smaug could not creep into a
hole that size, not even when he was a young dragon, certainly not
after devouring so many of the dwarves and men of Dale."
"It seems a great big hole to me," squeaked Bilbo (who had no
experience of dragons and only of hobbit-holes). He was getting
excited and interested again, so that he forgot to keep his mouth
shut. He loved maps, and in his hall there hung a large one of the
Country Round with all his favourite walks marked on it in red
ink. "How could such a large door be kept secret from everybody
outside, apart from the dragon?" he asked. He was only a little
hobbit you must remember.
"In lots of ways," said Gandalf. "But in what way this one
has been hidden we don't know without going to see. From what it says
on the map I should guess there is a closed door which has been made
to look exactly like the side of the Mountain. That is the usual
dwarves' method—I think that is right, isn't it?"
"Quite right," said Thorin.
"Also," went on Gandalf, "I forgot to mention that with the
map went a key, a small and curious key. Here it is!" he said, and
handed to Thorin a key with a long barrel and intricate wards, made
of silver. "Keep it safe!"
"Indeed I will," said Thorin, and he fastened it upon a fine
chain that hung about his neck and under his jacket. "Now things
begin to look more hopeful. This news alters them much for the
better. So far we have had no clear idea what to do. We thought of
going East, as quiet and careful as we could, as far as the Long
Lake. After that the trouble would begin—."
"A long time before that, if I know anything about the roads
East," interrupted Gandalf.
"We might go from there up along the River Running," went on
Thorin taking no notice, "and so to the ruins of Dale—the old town in
the valley there, under the shadow of the Mountain. But we none of us
liked the idea of the Front Gate. The river runs right out of it
through the great cliff at the South of the Mountain, and out of it
comes the dragon too—far too often, unless he has changed his habits."
"That would be no good," said the wizard, "not without a
mighty Warrior, even a Hero. I tried to find one; but warriors are
busy fighting one another in distant lands, and in this neighbourhood
heroes are scarce, or simply not to be found. Swords in these parts
are mostly blunt, and axes are used for trees, and shields as cradles
or dish-covers; and dragons are comfortably far-off (and therefore
legendary). That is why I settled on burglary—especially when I
remembered the existence of a Side-door. And here is our little Bilbo
Baggins, the burglar, the chosen and selected burglar. So now let's
get on and make some plans."
"Very well then," said Thorin, "supposing the burglar-expert
gives us some ideas or suggestions." He turned with mock-politeness
"First I should like to know a bit more about things," said
he, feeling all confused and a bit shaky inside, but so far still
Tookishly determined to go on with things. "I mean about the gold and
the dragon, and all that, and how it got there, and who it belongs
to, and so on and further."
"Bless me!" said Thorin, "haven't you got a map? and didn't
you hear our song? and haven't we been talking about all this for
"All the same, I should like it all plain and clear," said he
obstinately, putting on his business manner (usually reserved for
people who tried to borrow money off him), and doing his best to
appear wise and prudent and professional and live up to Gandalf's
recommendation. "Also I should like to know about risks, out-of-
pocket expenses, time required and remuneration, and so forthby which
he meant: "What am I going to get out of it? and am I going to come
"O very well," said Thorin. "Long ago in my grandfather
Thror's time our family was driven out of the far North, and came
back with all their wealth and their tools to this Mountain on the
map. It had been discovered by my far ancestor, Thrain the Old, but
now they mined and they tunnelled and they made huger halls and
greater workshops—and in addition I believe they found a good deal of
gold and a great many jewels too. Anyway they grew immensely rich and
famous, and my grandfather was King under the Mountain again, and
treated with great reverence by the mortal men, who lived to the
South, and were gradually spreading up the Running River as far as
the valley overshadowed by the Mountain. They built the merry town of
Dale there in those days. Kings used to send for our smiths, and
reward even the least skillful most richly. Fathers would beg us to
take their sons as apprentices, and pay us handsomely, especially in
food-supplies, which we never bothered to grow or find for ourselves.
Altogether those were good days for us, and the poorest of us had
money to spend and to lend, and leisure to make beautiful things just
for the fun of it, not to speak of the most marvellous and magical
toys, the like of which is not to be found in the world now-a-days.
So my grandfather's halls became full of armour and jewels and
carvings and cups, and the toy market of Dale was the wonder of the
"Undoubtedly that was what brought the dragon. Dragons steal
gold and jewels, you know, from men and elves and dwarves, wherever
they can find them; and they guard their plunder as long as they live
(which is practically for ever, unless they are killed), and never
enjoy a brass ring of it. Indeed they hardly know a good bit of work
from a bad, though they usually have a good notion of the current
market value; and they can't make a thing for themselves, not even
mend a little loose scale of their armour. There were lots of dragons
in the North in those days, and gold was probably getting scarce up
there, with the dwarves flying south or getting killed, and all the
general waste and destruction that dragons make going from bad to
worse. There was a most specially greedy, strong and wicked worm
called Smaug. One day he flew up into the air and came south. The
first we heard of it was a noise like a hurricane coming from the
North, and the pine-trees on the Mountain creaking and cracking in
the wind. Some of the dwarves who happened to be outside (I was one
luckily—a fine adventurous lad in those days, always wandering about,
and it saved my life that day)—well, from a good way off we saw the
dragon settle on our mountain in a spout of flame. Then he came down
the slopes and when he reached the woods they all went up in fire. By
that time all the bells were ringing in Dale and the warriors were
arming. The dwarves rushed out of their great gate; but there was the
dragon waiting for them. None escaped that way. The river rushed up
in steam and a fog fell on Dale, and in the fog the dragon came on
them and destroyed most of the warriors—the usual unhappy story, it
was only too common in those days. Then he went back and crept in
through the Front Gate and routed out all the halls, and lanes, and
tunnels, alleys, cellars, mansions and passages. After that there
were no dwarves left alive inside, and he took all their wealth for
himself. Probably, for that is the dragons' way, he has piled it all
up in a great heap far inside, and sleeps on it for a bed. Later he
used to crawl out of the great gate and come by night to Dale, and
carry away people, especially maidens, to eat, until Dale was ruined,
and all the people dead or gone. What goes on there now I don't know
for certain, but I don't suppose any one lives nearer to the Mountain
than the far edge of the Long Lake now-a-days.
"The few of us that were well outside sat and wept in hiding,
and cursed Smaug; and there we were unexpectedly joined by my father
and my grandfather with singed beards. They looked very grim but they
said very little. When I asked how they had got away, they told me to
hold my tongue, and said that one day in the proper time I should
know. After that we went away, and we have had to earn our livings as
best we could up and down the lands, often enough sinking as low as
blacksmith-work or even coalmining. But we have never forgotten our
stolen treasure. And even now, when I will allow we have a good bit
laid by and are not so badly off"—here Thorin stroked the gold chain
round his neck—"we still mean to get it back, and to bring our curses
home to Smaug—if we can.
"I have often wondered about my father's and my grandfather's
escape. I see now they must have had a private Side-door which only
they knew about. But apparently they made a map, and I should like to
know how Gandalf got hold of it, and why it did not come down to me,
the rightful heir."
"I did not 'get hold of it,' I was given it," said the
wizard. "Your grandfather Thror was killed, you remember, in the
mines of Moria by Azog the Goblin."
"Curse his name, yes," said Thorin.
"And Thrain your father went away on the twenty-first of
April, a hundred years ago last Thursday, and has never been seen by
"True, true," said Thorin.
"Well, your father gave me this to give to you; and if I have
chosen my own time and way for handing it over, you can hardly blame
me, considering the trouble I had to find you. Your father could not
remember his own name when he gave me the paper, and he never told me
yours; so on the whole I think I ought to be praised and thanked!
Here it is," said he handing the map to Thorin.
"I don't understand," said Thorin, and Bilbo felt he would
have liked to say the same. The explanation did not seem to explain.
"Your grandfather," said the wizard slowly and grimly, "gave
the map to his son for safety before he went to the mines of Moria.
Your father went away to try his luck with the map after your
grandfather was killed; and lots of adventures of a most unpleasant
sort he had, but he never got near the Mountain. How he got there I
don't know, but I found him a prisoner in the dungeons of the
"Whatever were you doing there?" asked Thorin with a shudder,
and all the dwarves shivered.
"Never you mind. I was finding things out, as usual; and a
nasty dangerous business it was. Even I, Gandalf, only just escaped.
I tried to save your father, but it was too late. He was witless and
wandering, and had forgotten almost everything except the map and the
"We have long ago paid the goblins of Moria," said
Thorin; "we must give a thought to the Necromancer."
"Don't be absurd! He is an enemy far beyond the powers of all
the dwarves put together, if they could all be collected again from
the four corners of the world. The one thing your father wished was
for his son to read the map and use the key. The dragon and the
Mountain are more than big enough tasks for you!"
"Hear, hear!" said Bilbo, and accidentally said it aloud.
"Hear what?" they all said turning suddenly towards him, and
he was so flustered that he answered "Hear what I have got to say!"
"What's that?" they asked.
"Well, I should say that you ought to go East and have a look
round. After all there is the Side-door, and dragons must sleep
sometimes, I suppose. If you sit on the door-step long enough, I
daresay you will think of something. And well, don't you know, I
think we have talked long enough for one night, if you see what I
mean. What about bed, and an early start, and all that? I will give
you a good breakfast before you go."
"Before we go, I suppose you mean," said Thorin. "Aren't you
the burglar? And isn't sitting on the door-step your job, not to
speak of getting inside the door? But I agree about bed and
breakfast. I like six eggs with my ham, when starting on a journey:
fried not poached, and mind you don't break 'em."
After all the others had ordered their breakfasts without so
much as a please (which annoyed Bilbo very much), they all got up.
The hobbit had to find room for them all, and filled all his spare-
rooms and made beds on chairs and sofas, before he got them all
stowed and went to his own little bed very tired and not altogether
happy. One thing he did make his mind up about was not to bother to
get up very early and cook everybody else's wretched breakfast. The
Tookishness was wearing off, and he was not now quite so sure that he
was going on any journey in the morning.
As he lay in bed he could hear Thorin still humming to
himself in the best bedroom next to him:
Far over the misty mountains cold
To dungeons deep and caverns old
We must away, ere break of day,
To find our long-forgotten gold.
Bilbo went to sleep with that in his ears, and it gave him
very uncomfortable dreams. It was long after the break of day, when
he woke up.
Copyright 1937 by George Allen & Unwin Ltd.
Copyright © 1966 by J.R.R. Tolkien
Copyright © renewed 1994 by Christopher R. Tolkien, John F.R. Tolkien
and Priscilla M.A.R. Tolkien
Copyright © restored 1996 by the Estate of J.R.R. Tolkien, assigned
1997 to the J.R.R. Tolkien Copyright Trust
All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission of Houghton Mifflin Company.
|List of Illustrations||x|
|Note on the Text||xi|
|I.||An Unexpected Party||3|
|III.||A Short Rest||51|
|IV.||Over Hill and Under Hill||61|
|V.||Riddles in the Dark||76|
|VI.||Out of the Frying-Pan into the Fire||100|
|VIII.||Flies and Spiders||153|
|IX.||Barrels Out of Bond||185|
|X.||A Warm Welcome||205|
|XI.||On the Doorstep||219|
|XIII.||Not at Home||253|
|XIV.||Fire and Water||266|
|XV.||The Gathering of the Clouds||277|
|XVI.||A Thief in the Night||289|
|XVII.||The Clouds Burst||296|
|XVIII.||The Return Journey||310|
|XIX.||The Last Stage||320|
|Chapter 1 of The Fellowship of the Ring, Book One of The Lord of the Rings A Long-Expected Party||333|
Posted March 3, 2012
But the enhanced edition is worth the extra buck, which it is I believe only a dollar more. It has recordings of J R R Tolkein reading the dwarves songs such as chip the glassses n crack the plates! & far over the misty mountains cold.
178 out of 234 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 26, 2010
I've loved the Hobbit for a long time, and was excited to see an eBook version come out. "Finally, I can read it on my Nook", I thought. I was extremely disappointed in some of the choices of the formatters. Tolkien's illustrations are included, but are reduced to a postage stamp size, for some reason. The Nook screen has a very high resolution, and the illustrations should take advantage of it! The illustrations even look terrible on the tiny iPhone screen. Also, for some reason, the lines of verse are irregularly spaced. Sometimes you'll get 5 stanzas on the screen, sometimes two or three with bizarre spacing. If I'm paying for a product, I expect a professional look and consistent formatting!
172 out of 210 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 2, 2009
This is a fabulous edition of the Hobbit. We purchased it for our family library. My children loved the illustrations. It is a bit pricy - but a wonderful addition to any collection.
116 out of 151 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 6, 2010
The Hobbit (the prelude to the Lord of the Rings) starts out great and never goes downhill from there. When it starts out with a three foot tall person being thrown out of his home with nothing, and coming back the richest person in his country, it will almost always be a great book.
In the beginning a hobbit named Bilbo gets thrown out of his home and goes on an adventure. The following exert is Gandalf the wizard getting Bilbo out the door. "But. ""No time for that!" "But.""No time for that either!" He then goes on a fantastic journey with talking spiders, goblins, greedy elves, and..riddles. That last part may not make sense, but it will when you read it and decide it is an incredible book.
I think it is an occasionally funny, exciting, fantasy genre adventure story. It sprinkles in humor sparingly at good points in the story. It is not a book I would recommend for those below eleven or twelve years of age.
The Hobbit is, in my opinion, an incredible read that should be worth a look from everyone.
The Hobbit is the greatest book I have ever read, and a true classic. If you like The Lord of the Rings movies, you will love this book. When I set it down, I was captivated by its story, and its incredible quality.
74 out of 100 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien is truly a magical book that will cheer most people up when they're not in a good mood. A tale concerning small hobbits no more than three feet tall, to cave trolls towering over ten feet, which will swipe you off your feet and into a new world, if you get into it. All the creatures in between include elves, wizards, dwarves, and goblins that according to Tolkien all existed during the past times, after the age of the creation of magic and before the dominion of men. Tolkien describes that the reason for which this magic is lost is because through time, when men grew and spread through middle-earth, men could not use such powers and so those who knew magic became extinct.
The story starts off with a description of how hobbits lived during this era, and about a particular hobbit that would become a hero, Bilbo Baggins. Hobbits were three-foot tall creatures that look like men but have a thick layer of hair beneath their feet to walk bare-footed, and they didn't do anything unexpected or out of the ordinary. So to make the long story short, a wizard and thirteen dwarves set out to Bilbo's house and convince him to commence a long journey through dangerous lands around middle-earth, and he has no choice but to agree. So they fight goblins and trolls and converse with a dragon to find a treasure.
This story is more about the journey and the bonding of the characters throughout the experience, than about wanting and finding the treasure. It's a wonderful tale about friendship and learning through experiences to be successful. The style of writing the author offers the reader in this book is uniquely captivating because he writes very simple sentences, yet his intended ideas are perfectly well written and so his simplicity also keeps the reader interested rather than reading a line ten times because you can't make sense of it. The pacing of the book is moderate (neither fast nor slow), and because it is a journey the setting constantly changes and varies throughout. There is a perfect amount of magic that's enough to have one believing in the story and not have the reader thinking of excuses as to how certain things cannot possibly be true.
The Hobbit is a wonderful novel where the world of magic and reality collide and to some may seem truly spectacular. In the end, this book helps us appreciate life as a whole and also to move on in life. It also advises us to try new things in life because you never know something for sure unless you try it. Instead of sticking with the unexpected and blinding ourselves with ignorance, we can open our closed-minds and instead of dismissing a challenge, we can accept it and maybe we can change the way we live, or even the mood that we wake up in each morning, opening ourselves to the simplicity of life. So yes, I do recommend this magnificent title.
51 out of 70 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 31, 2012
While the nook version may have some bugs to work out (and very slight bugs in comparison to many other books might I add) the story is still as magical as it was the first time I read the book. The only "problem" I noticed was that the illustrations would sometimes come in between two consecutive pages, instead of at the end or beginning of a chapter. The illustrations were still fabulous and, for me anyways, did not interrupt the story.
47 out of 59 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 20, 2013
This is for the Bill Vincent publisher eBook version.
I WANT MY MONEY BACK!!!
I have read the Hobbit Several times. Love it, 5 stars etc.
Looks like Bill Vincent is a lazy incompetent publisher who does not even proof read his publication.
This eBook version is a scan of the book where there are intolerable OCR errors on just about every page. The OCR spell check also incorrectly changes some of the Dwarf names to the wrong spelling.
Who the heck is Bill Vincent and how did Barnes and Noble let him in here with his piece of book scan and OCR fail garbage.
34 out of 39 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 28, 2012
I'm in eighth grade, and I was truly fascinated by this book. It has many captivating moments that keep your eyes glued to the screen of your nook. I recommend this book to any teenager who is a great reader (and quite nerdy perhaps as you will be saying things like "Orcrist" and " Glamdring" with your friends), I also would recommend this to any adult who has a knack for fantasy creatures, and likes descriptive settings. I truly enjoyed this book and I am excited to read the next book in The Lord of the Rings series.
32 out of 39 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 20, 2010
The Hobbit is such a great book! Tolkien's writing is incredible! He makes it seem as if you are in the story with the characters, thinking and feeling what they are! It is the best fantasy novel I have ever read! I can't wait to move on to the Lord of the Rings!
29 out of 45 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 26, 2010
The Hobbit, also known as There and Back Again, is a classic prequel to the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and connects the information given in the Lord of the Rings with an awe inspiring-story. The book highlights the journey of the then young Bilbo Baggins, who is tricked by the wizard Gandalf to host a party for a band of thirteen dwarves. Gandalf then proposes to Bilbo and the Dwarves to go on a quest to find the Lonely Mountain, a refuge for the evil dragon Smaug. The mountain was not always this way; it was once a rich dwarf stronghold, full of gold and other riches. The confused Bilbo accepts the offer, and finds himself on the most exciting journey he will ever take. This book is written in a more understandable way than the Lord of the Rings. Strange and improvised words are less dense, leading to a faster; more useable reading experience. You can't go wrong with this book. It tells the classic tale of a common, modest being venturing out of his comfort zone and finding himself in vast riches.
20 out of 33 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 20, 2012
The Hobbit is a prequel to the Lord of the Rings titles illustrating the long talked about adventures of Frodo's father, Bilbo Baggins. Although the title doesn't make huge connections to the original Lord of the Rings tales, it does explain how the Baggins' got the magical ring and it explains everything that made Bilbo what he is today. If none of this made sense, that's okay. Even if you have no knowledge of the Lord of the Rings, this book still beautifully tells an amazing tale.
The story begins in Bilbo home town where he still lives. The book explains very well that Hobbits (the race of Bilbo) don't much care for adventures and would rather be safe at home. So when Gandalf the wizard visits Bilbo and practically pushes Bilbo into an adventure, it doesn't sit well with Bilbo. It seems within a day he is swooped away and on a horse to help Gandalf and the dwarves on a grand adventure that he never actually agreed to. The dwarves (13 of them) are a group a relatives that plan to reclaim the lost gold of Thorin's (the lead dwarf) father's former kingdom which is now inhabited by a mighty dragon.
The story takes countless twists and turns throughout the book. What starts as a simple adventure at the beginning of the tale, soon turns into much more. What you get in the end is a truly satisfying tale. If you love stories of great adventures, this is the book for you. Whether it's goblins, giant wolves, elves, and even dragons, this book truly grasps the imagination.
Bilbo is an especially interesting character to follow. As the adventure goes on you see him change and become braver and more heroic. In the beginning, the dwarves see him as a pain to carry along with them. But then you see Bilbo become much more to the group which makes the book even better. Bilbo is a troubled, scared, and sad hobbit that answers the call to save himself and others which is very interesting to read.
Finally, this book is worthy of being read simply because of J.R.R Tolkien's unique writing style. It is different from today's standard literature and truly is told in a special way. It gives the book it's own feel and brings the fantasy world alive. This book is a must read for all.
15 out of 23 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 9, 2013
Posted November 28, 2012
Posted April 26, 2010
I've always loved this book, since I first read it at the age of five. Twenty-seven years later, I still find it enjoyable, like an old friend who is always dependable. I just read it again last weekend when I was sick with the flu, and it was just as good as the first time around. Tolkien did a wonderful job telling an entertaining story in a marvelous, mystical world that transports one away from the problems of the real world. A definite classic and a highly recommended read for anyone, young and old.
11 out of 16 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 5, 2014
This book was the worst and most distracting with all the typos and mis-spelled words on each page. I would NOT RECOMMENDS this version of the Hobbit to anyone. I WANT MY MONEY BACK!!!!!!
10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Before there were whispers of a growing shadow or the finding of a perilous ring of power, there was a simple hobbit that lived in a simple hole in the ground. Considerably lighter in tone than the epic of the ring, The Hobbit is a marvelous tale that follows the most unexpected adventures of a most unfortunate hobbit. Bilbo Baggins, accompanied by a companion of dwarves and a wise old wizard, travels across Middle-earth in search of a long lost treasure guarded by a fearsome terror known as Smaug.
10 out of 18 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 28, 2012
Posted November 28, 2013
If editing and errors have been mostly fixed I shutter to think how bad it was before...for goodness sakes one of the dwarves name's is NOT Min it's Balin and it is not Fill and Kill but Fili and Kili. Don't get this copy...pay more and get the far far better copy the accurate and true copy! I love this book and cried for how it was butchered in this ebook copy!
8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 27, 2013
This version of The Hobbit is riddled with spelling errors due to the fact it is OCR and not manually transferred into a digital format. I am currently on page 63 and I aproximate the spellings errors to be roughly 20 or so. The errors distract from the reading as many times the error uses a symble not a letter and other times the OCR software installs a word that rhymes with the actual that should have been used.
8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 20, 2012