Title: The Hobbit.
Writer(s): J.R.R. Tolkien.
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers.
Release Date: October 1st 2011 (first published September 21st 1937).
My Overall Rating: ★★★★★.
Oh, what would we do for an adventure like none other! To be mesmerized, enchanted, transported, and put way outside our comfort zone only to discover and explore the subtle beauty of life and the surprises it has for those who dare take the leap. Thankfully, there are stories out there who allow us to enjoy this without setting foot outside our own little caves. They somehow still manage to tug on our emotions, tickle our most profound desires, stimulating an uncontrollable urge in us to go on our next big adventure, anticipating the climactic hour where everything erupts, plunging us in the midst of all the action that only life can offer you. Sometimes it’s through the little folks that you can truly understand the richness of the world and the courage we all have deep within to go on such adventures. It was thus about time that I finally tackled J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic children’s novel where I can now find everything I need in a hobbit’s extraordinary plight.
What is The Hobbit about? At peace in his little home, void of any sense of adventure, Bilbo Baggins, a most respectable hobbit who embraced the rules of etiquette with all his heart saw his life flip upside down with the arrival of the great wizard Gandalf. Caught completely off guard, unable to stand up for himself, he is whisked away by Gandalf and the thirteen dwarves on a mission to reclaim the Lonely Mountain and the treasure that belongs to Thorin Oakenshield, heir to the destroyed dwarvish kingdom, from the mighty and marvelous Smaug, a legendary dragon who shows no mercy to all who dares cross paths with him. Although thunderstruck and reluctant, Bilbo Baggins heads into the world as the assigned burglar and solely relies on his resourcefulness to survive what will be an unforgettable and unforgiving quest of a lifetime.
Despite its linear story, J.R.R. Tolkien proves that even in simplicity you can find a myriad of wonders in The Hobbit, allowing you to appreciate the complexity derived from an epic adventure brought to life through stellar world-building. With an omniscient narrator to guide the reader through the various perils that await Bilbo Baggins, the story unfolds in several episodes where the group stumbles and fumbles their way into the hands of terrifying foes with barely ever a moment of respite as they kick into survival mode, with food and sleep becoming a luxury. It’s how J.R.R. Tolkien effortlessly brings to life the bag of creatures he conjures from the depths of his marvelous imagination that really distinguishes his story from others. From goblins to wolves, he masterfully illustrates them throughout this tale to add a sense of impending danger and rising tension to every step of the dwarves’ and hobbit’s way.
Although the story doesn’t include a single female character, it’s how J.R.R. Tolkien manages to make characters transcend their gender and nature to embody ideas that anyone can relate to that proves why this beloved tale is an unmatched classic. In fact, it is without question that Bilbo Baggins remains the focal point of this adventure, showcasing a precious and delightful growth, that all will be in awe at, as he faces adversity that he has never would have sought in the first place. Although he starts off with an appointed role with zero credibility to establish his pertinence in this trip and only Gandalf to vouch for his indispensable and enigmatic abilities, he quickly embraces a role of a leader as he makes a name for himself and proves the dwarves, their enemies, and himself that he is more than just a hobbit with a habit for all that is cyclic. This route of self-discovery that he paves for himself is one that ultimately allows him to become more than what he ever could have fancied for himself and it is this stark transformation that readers will always love him for.
The Hobbit is an enchanting classic serving as the epitome of fantasy literature and follows a little man in his journey of unwarranted calamity for a vital revelation in the form of self-discovery.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012) is the first movie of director Peter Jackson’s trilogy.