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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Return of the King Book Review

Anybody who knows me also knows that The Lord of the Rings has played a crucial part in my life. I thank my brother, Brett, for getting me involved with Tolkien's world. If he never talked me into reading The Fellowship of the Ring, I don't know if I ever would have jumped into Middle-Earth.

This completes my 9th read-through of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Guess what? Even after the 9th time, this series is hands-down the best treasure of literature I've ever read. I can think of no other story that is more compelling. The greatest strength in Middle-Earth is the depth. Tolkien did something that most authors can only dream about doing. He didn't just create a solid story... he created a universe where anybody can visit and revisit anytime. Want to sit among Hobbits, telling marvelous stories while smoking long-bottom leaf and drinking the finest ales? Read the first few chapters of The Fellowship of the Ring. Want to walk in the Halls of Meduseld, or learn to ride the best-bred horses around? Jump into the chapters of Rohan in The Two Towers. If you think your life is dark, dismal, and hopeless, read about Frodo and Sam and their walk through Mordor in The Return of the King. It will help you gain some perspective, and you'll be able to escape the real world for awhile.

The Return of the King is a spectacular ending to the epic saga. It is fast paced and full of action. It is good to see Aragorn finally claim the mantle of King.

One of the finest things about this book is seeing how much each member of the Fellowship grow. Merry and Pippen become soldiers; Frodo and Sam succeed in their quest. Gimli and Legolas overcome their abhorrence for each other and end up becoming best friends. Gandalf takes Saruman's place as the White Wizard. Seeing all the character growth is inspiring.

“Well, here at last, dear friends, on the shores of the Sea comes the end of our fellowship in Middle-earth. Go in peace! I will not say: do not weep; for not all tears are an evil.” - Gandalf the White