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Lord of the Rings Book Review
by Chris Smithson

Many years ago, an author, J.R.R Tolkien created the best fantasy books ever made. The book trilogy, The Lord of the Rings (containing The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King), is set in a world created by Tolkien, called Middle Earth. The books are about a small hobbit on a big quest. The main character, Frodo, inherits a magical ring that could cause the end of the world. With a fellowship of man, hobbit, elf, and dwarf alike, Frodo goes on a quest to Mt. Doom to destroy this ring. Along the way, he and his friends encounter many obstacles of astounding proportions, which they must deal with to finish their quest. Tolkien combines many elements in his trilogy, including great characters, a solid setting, and an amazing plot to bring The Lord of the Rings to life.

Tolkien created truly lifelike characters in The Lord of the Rings. When reading the books, you feel as if you are with them in their fellowship enduring the adventure among them. The way Tolkien uses the characters to add atmosphere to the story is great. Each character is highly detailed, physically and emotionally. When you meet a new character in the book, Tolkien describes him/her brilliantly. For example, in Return of the King, Tolkien describes when Pippin meets Denethor, the King of Minas Tirith. "Then the old man looked up. Pippin saw his carven face with his proud bones and skin like ivory, and the long curved nose between the dark deep eyes; and he was reminded not so much of Boromir as of Aragorn." Throughout the story, you get to know them well. The characters are so strongly described that you will either love or hate their distingue personalities.

Middle Earth is a truly a wonderful world. When you start on the novels, you embark in a small town where the Hobbits live, called Hobbiton, which is in an area called the shire. When Tolkien describes the Shire, he uses great detail as they move from town to town. Just the Shire itself is so well done that Tolkien could have written a book just focused on that area...(oh wait, he did, and it’s called The Hobbit.) After you leave the Shire, the full world opens up to you, almost like a child discovering the world is bigger than his backyard. The book is essentially just one huge road trip, which brings you from town to town. The journey is quite believable, and so you can understand the expedition more so, Tolkien created a map of Middle Earth, which is included with the books. Many modern fantasy novels had tried this approach, but they do not compare to the immense detail of Middle Earth.

The plot of The Lord of The Rings is unfathomable. The storyline is based upon Frodo traveling to Mt. Doom to destroy "The one ring", which leads into countless subplots, which add to the texture of the novels. The focal plot of the story could have been finished in one book, but Tolkien actually spent an immense amount of time creating subplots that smoothly slide in with the main plot to create a much better book. I believe this is the best storyline for a fantasy novel ever written.

Concluding, J.R.R. Tolkien’s classic trilogy The Lord of the Rings is a wonder to the imagination. The books are great in every aspect and could not be improved upon in any way. If there is only one fantasy book you read, make it Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings.

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