Again, I can't do epics. I will watch the movie rather than read this again any day of the week. The writing's very dense, and it's clear that Tolkien was a major history buff. He's created a world that is fully, fully fleshed-out. He probably could have written you a tome that details every moment of Middle Earth for 5000 years (which may be "The Simarillion", actually -- I don't know, I only made it fifty pages into that one). But I just don't have the patience for it. After reading these as a teenager, I've not really been tempted to go back. And each time I try, I'm quickly dissuaded; I'd rather read a new adventure than re-read an adventure I remember quite well. It's different with someone like Philip Pullman, whose writing is some sort of catnip to me. Tolkien just doesn't strike the same chord, so all hail Peter Jackson, and I'm afraid the books have largely been relegated to display-only on my bookshelf.sha gha
The only thing I can say about these series of books is: "The Lord of The Rings is a real masterpiece". It really worth the time you spend for reading it!Tim Vandenberg
The only problem with this audio recording of Tolkien *HIMSELF* reading his own works is that it will only make you wish you had a recording of him reading the ENTIRE Middle Earth canon aloud to you. Tolkien is an excellent, passionate voice actor--though unpolished, he reads with the GENUINE character interpretation (since he IS the author) and does so with GREAT PASSION!!! Just listen to him read the Golem parts in "Riddles in the Dark", and you'll be HOOKED!VERY recommended for ALL Tolkien fans!M.H.S. Pourri
Again, amazing book. I actually had to read it through several timesElise Stokes
Tolkien's imagination astounds me. I was thoroughly pulled into the mythical world he creates, and appreciated how he masterfully wove his personal faith throughout, especially in Frodo's quest. A must read for all ages.Cods Cordery
Awesome. Of course.Heather's Mum
Who can resist the charm of J. R. R. Tolkien's brave little hairy toed Hobbits, awesome Gandalf the Grey, Aragorn, Tom Bombadil, Elf-lord Glorfindel, Half-elven lord Elrond, beautiful Arwen, Boromir, Lady Galadriel, Gimli the Dwarf, and Legolas the Elf.Tolkien describes Hobbits: "I picture a fairly human figure, not a kind of fairy rabbit as some of my British reviewers seem to fancy: fattish in the stomach, shortish in the leg. A round, jovial face; ears only slightly pointed and 'elvish'; hair short and curling (brown). The feet from the ankles down, covered with brown hairy fur. Clothing: green velvet breeches; red or yellow waistcoat; brown or green jacket; gold (or brass) buttons; a dark green hood and cloak (belonging to a dwarf)." Even Hobbit names are whimsical and bring on a smile. Bilbo Baggins Frodo Baggins Samwise "Sam" Gamgee Meriadoc "Merry" Brandybuck Peregrin "Pippin" Took Fredegar "Fatty" BolgerRecipe for IRREPRESSIBLE, SPELL-BINDING literary entertainment:Find featured, always hungry Hobbits in hobbit-holes in a Shire and/or at Birthday celebration. Mix with good & bad Wizards, Elves, Dwarves, a magical gold ring everyone wants, Orcs, terrifying Ringwraiths, a once "of hobbit-kind" creature called Gollum, a demon Balrog, a giant spider named Shelob, tree-like Ents, Humans, huge elephant-like Oliphaunts and Trolls. Then throw in lots of adventures, battles, magic, love, death, humor, loyalty, friendship, tears and fear. Arrange all ingredients to make the reader stay up for days... unwilling to do anything but read the next sentence, next paragraph, next page, next chapter, then next book until you finally wave goodbye to Bilbo, Frodo, Gandolph and the elves as they ... read the books and find out!!Arthur Graham
See my review of Narnia, yo.Riju Ganguly
This is not the first edition of this book that I had read. I had LOTR & The Hobbit long-back, in different editions, at different stages of mind. Before the movies had been released, LOTR/H used to be our own secret garden where we could have escaped any time we liked, but now oue own images have been replaced or landscaped by Peter Jackson. Nevertheless, if you think that G.R.R. martin is the last word in terms of writing fantastically entertaining fantasy, then read this book, and change your opinion, for ever. Highly recommended (esp. this version, since it brings together everything in a rather convenient and yet pleasant manner).Pushkar Kulkarni
One of the best FantasyLena
It might be a classic, but there are many who have stern reservations about reading this series, partially I suspect due to its length... Well my answer to this is simply: DON'T BE LAZY!My journey within Middle Earth stated as young teenager - my parents gave me 'The Hobbit' as a Christmas present one year and my father and I decided we'd enjoy it together. I think it was the last book he ever read me as a 'bedtime story', but we embarked on the adventures of Bilbo Baggins together and absolutely loved every minute of it! The Hobbit was a stunning example of fantasy and adventure writing at its best. One event after another, crisis after epic excitement, wonder at the enormity of the main character's daring and courage.I am only sorry it took me so long to pursue the ongoing tale of the hobbits at Bagend. The Lord of the Rings was definitely a further step up the scale though. I will not deny that The Lord of the Rings trilogy is a difficult read in terms of perseverance (hence 4 stars). I have always been an avid reader and there were a couple of times as I went through my teens that I picked up the Fellowship of the Ring and gave up before I could really get my teeth into it. Indeed, I didn't finish the trilogy until I was in my early 20s and I'm not ashamed to admit that I was actually quite proud of myself for having finally completed this mammoth journey with Frodo and his companions. I read about 2/3rds of the trilogy in one block in the end as I decided to forbid myself to watch the epic films again until I was done with the books because I knew that every time I grew impatient for the story to continue without wanting to spend the time or the energy reading it, I'd watch the films and that would result in me not feeling the need to continue the book for a good while. I say all this to illustrate a point - don't give up! It's totally worth it!The Lord of the Rings is filled with new troubles and adventures. At first the idea of following several characters quite separately may be quite unusual, even a little daunting. But it truly brings the world of Middle Earth to life! You get a true feel for the scale and even the politics of such a creation by journeying through it with different companions, each with a different purpose. The struggles and hardships are of such importance and value to both the reader and the characters by the end of the journey, Tolkien has spoken volumes about friendship, love, bravery, honour, loyalty, deceit...you name it, its all there.These books are a must read, wherever you are in your lifetime.J.C.
Well, I don't really have this boxed set, but of course I've read all the books. I get more out of them with each re-reading. Tolkien would be one of those guys who, if I could invite any 3 people to have dinner with, would get a seat at the table.Linda Edmondson
My favoritestest series ever!!! I could lose myself in Middle Earth forever. I have read this series cover to cover during every life changing, painful period of my life. Yes, I have read it seven times.Scott
This series is the Yardstick by which I measure all Fantasy stories. Fantastic story-telling, far ahead of its time in the genre. Many an author has stood on the shoulders of Tolkien to try to weave their magic, though few have done so in a way that have equaled his work. Two series have, in my opinion rivaled and one surpassed Tolkien's tales. Though both stood upon his shoulders to get there. Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series struck me and began to rival and then surpass Tolkien as I read it. Something I did not believe would ever be possible. Though the series flagged a bit and is now being finished by Brandon Sanderson.The Series I believe has TRULY SURPASSED Tolkien(while standing upon his shoulders, among others) is The Dark Tower Series by Stephen King. The series blew me away! It left me with the same feeling I had after reading Tolkien, that this was it. The apotheosis of all stories, and that there would never be another that would carry me away so fully and be so deeply rewarding.