I eventually grew to like the Hobbit as a child. I tried to read it when I was younger, as we did a drama study of it in Year 5 at school. I didn’t manage to get into it then, but came back to it as a teenager, after I had read the Lord of the Rings, and loved it. I have since reread it about 3 or 4 times.
I love the setting of Middle Earth – I read a lot of fantasy fiction and I think that Middle Earth remains one of the best and most believable fantasy settings out there. It is very easy for the reader to retreat into this alternate world and believe in all of the characters that inhabit it.
Normally I am a great fan of making my children read a book before I take them to see the films that accompany it – we did this with the whole Harry Potter series and I think we all got a lot more out of the film by reading the book first.
However in the case of the Hobbit, I am inclined to revise my normal view. The language used in the book is a bit dense (it was written in 1937) , and it may be a little hard for some children to appreciate exactly what Middle Earth is all about. However I am sure that many children will go and see the film (I will certainly be taking mine) and will then return to this classic book with their eyes opened, and see it for the lovely story that it is, and a great prelude to Lord of the Rings.
Here is a Synopsis (for those that haven’t read it yet)
Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable, unambitious life, rarely travelling further than the pantry of his hobbit-hole in Bag End. But his contentment is disturbed when the wizard, Gandalf, and a company of thirteen dwarves arrive on his doorstep one day to whisk him away on an unexpected journey ‘there and back again’. They have a plot to raid the treasure hoard of Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon…
I have kept the copy that Waterstones sent me pristine, so I can offer it to somebody in a giveaway – please check the Rafflecopter widget below. I still have my old thumbed copy from many years ago, which I keep in a prominent place on my shelf