Virtual book club update!! My amazing best friend and fellow member of the book club sent me the entire set of Lord of the Rings books which is our current reading journey. Per the usual I am pairing these books with the movies. Part of the reason Bob suggested these books is because the Lord of the Rings movies acted as a significant backdrop to the early days of our friendship. I have opted to separate the Hobbit out from the remaining trilogy because it is often times a stand alone and we have a lot to say on this topic.
Bottom line - we didn't love this book. I was hugely annoyed by Bilbo Baggins throughout, I found him to be whiney and obnoxious - listen Bilbo if you miss the Shire so much, go back! We also both agreed that the character development for anyone not Bilbo was non-existent so when things happen to the other characters you don't care, you haven't gotten to know them and you aren't attached. This book also ran into the same problem as the last Hunger Games book - it could have been longer or at least given us more of what the other characters were experiencing. There were parts of the book that just didn't feel to be needed or at least didn't need to be so long and other parts like, oh I don't know, the battle of the five armies could have been much longer and much more detailed instead of a blip! This battle which is turned into a whole movie isn't even mentioned until page 281 of a 305 page book! WHAT?! We needed much more of that instead of *spoiler alert*
Bilbo puts on the ring disappears until he's accidently knocked out and then wakes up battle over. WHAT?!
Now the movies... I am very conflicted on these movies, because well, I enjoy them. We came to the conclusion that even the worst Peter Jackson Middle Earth movie is still a great movie and that's how I feel about the Hobbit movies. However, I also see these for what they were - a complete and total money grab! They cashed in on the success of the original trilogy and they turned this tiny book into a trio of movies each three hours long! They added characters, they brought in fan favorites from Lord of the Rings (I'm looking at you Legolas) and they embellished - A LOT! But I'm not mad at it, you cared about the characters, you understood why things were done the way they were done and you got to be a part of all the action.
Final words on The Hobbit book and movies: I will 1000% watch these movies again before I read the book again. In fact, I own these movies, they are my brother-in-law's favorites so he bought them for me ages ago. We have now started Fellowship of the Ring and I am so eager to see where this journey takes us. How do you feel about the Lord of the Rings books and movies?