One hundred-twenty-one years ago, John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, or J. R. R. Tolkien was born. He, of course, is the author of 'The Hobbit' and 'The Lord of the Rings,' along with many other books and short stories about Middle Earth. It seems appropriate that his birthday falls after the theatrical release of the first installment of "The Hobbit" films, with Tolkien and his works being in the spotlight. People are visiting theatres to see the movie, and purchasing new prints of the books and getting back into Middle Earth. It is a great thing when a great movie can revive a book that may not have had the attention it deserves in the last couple of years.
I admit to having not yet read 'The Hobbit' and have only read parts of 'The Lord of the Rings.' I struggled to read 'The Hobbit,' though I'm not sure why. After seeing the movie, I felt a renewed sense of desire to read the book, and actually finished it in about 5 days or so.
The story of 'The Hobbit' details the account of how Bilbo Baggins came into possession of The One Ring, though when he finds it, he does not know the story behind its true power, at least that te reader knows. As most people are aware, he steals the ring from Gollum, the mysterious lonely creature that dwells in the Misty Mountains.
Bilbo is invited to go on an adventure with a troop of dwarves and a wizard. The intent is to win back the homeland of the dwarves, who were run out many, many years ago by the dragon, Smaug. Being that Bilbo is small and can go by without being noticed, Gandalf feels that Bilbo would be a good addition to the group, and gave him the title of the Burglar.
Bilbo encounters many dangers and events during this journey, and meets many different characters, some good, some not so good. And through it all, he proves himself to be much greater than any old Hobbit, and he wins the respect and admiration of the dwarves that he adventures with.
Tolkien truly had a gift for adventure. While some of the parts that could really be emotional are rather glossed over, there is no lack of action and excitement throughout the novel. Part of me feels somewhat excited to see how Peter Jackson interprets these emotional parts in the movie, which combined with the novel will make the scenes that much more powerful.
Even if you are late to the party, as I am, in terms of Tolkien novels, right now is a perfect time to join the millions of people who've already been inspired by his novels. So go grab The Hobbit and start in on the adventure of a lifetime.