I would get backlashed for this, but I am very, very honest here. I have not read any Tolkien books. Yes, you read that right. I have not in my life read any of his books. I have seen the movies, and yes, I know that most of the people who has read Tolkien would say, ‘They are in no way the same as the books!’ which I also say the same thing when it comes to Harry Potter.
However, though, these past few months, I have been trying to get myself to start reading The Hobbit. I have listened to a good 55 minutes of the audio book, but this does not satisfy me that much. I always look for books, the written word is what I always find satisfying. What is ironic as I have done this is that I have a copy of The Hobbit, as well as with the Lord of The Rings trilogy, Silmarillion, and of course The Children of Húrin. I have heard so much from other readers how they find Tolkien very hard to read, since the author himself is very fond of language, the words used in his books are likely heavy and dense. It is an epic fantasy after all.
As I do, I kept looking for any materials of people, bookworms, who started out just like me. You know, scared of Tolkien’s words, works, and worlds. And I do find A LOT. Most of them do find it very difficult when they started, and while reading them slowly and understanding every bit of the books, most of them has been turned into die-hard fans that could discuss Tolkien while sleeping. Also, they are really very optimistic for those who are just starting that they can go through it, not easily but eventually. As they say, the books are a little bit slow paced and it can take as long as your brain could process.
While digging my way through the researches, I was looking how to start and how to read Tolkien. I mean, we did get LOTR (Lord Of The Rings) movies first before we got The Hobbit. The site called ‘The Tolkien Society’ recommended the following though:
- The Hobbit
- The Lord of the Rings
- Tales from the Perilous Realm [mainly short stories with only nominal Middle-earth content]
- The Silmarillion
- Unfinished Tales
- The History of Middle-earth series
- The Children of Húrin
- The Fall of Arthur
Note, the last 2 books are not connected with Middle-Earth. They are other books by Tolkien himself. Okay, Beowulf was a translation of the said, most say it’s a poem but it is an Old English epic story. Though here I am, very interested with the Middle-Earth stories from the epic author. Where I have a separate wishlist dedicated to Tolkien only. If you wish to send me a book, let me know. *wink*
Nevertheless, I have decided to start with the reading, The Hobbit first of course. I might be starting on the book before we reach the New Year’s Eve. This is not to sound smart or a nerd, but I think I am missing so much of this world if I do not give it a chance of reading. Tell me what you think!