Middle Earth Home for Retired Heroes is somewhere I’d like to hang out (draft)

Well it took me over a year to get here, but I finally made it. I finished the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. I actually finished a couple of weeks ago (last week? time is beginning to be less linear and more muddled) thanks to the dramatic increase in driving time resulting from the start of September. And so, this in turn resulted in my eventually turning on my LOTR audio book (yes, I know it’s dangerous due to the lullabies, but sometimes we have to take risks to achieve our goals). This is how I finished Return of the King. I have no regrets.


Return of the King had about 20 endings

This book could have ended SO MANY times before it actually did. It could have ended when the war ended. It could have ended after one of the tertiary character’s weddings. It could have ended after Frodo and Sam came-to like the movies did. It could have ended when the hobbits took back Hobbiton. To make things even better, Tolkien was ending all of his chapters as if they were actual endings. The last paragraphs, and especially the last sentence of each passage, had a closing tone to them – they suggested finality. But no, Tolkien was just pulling a fast one. Like the director of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (am I right? How many endings can one movie have?!)

Saruman is allowed to live so that he can have a hilarious death

The Good Side let Saruman go at least 3 times and then Wormtongue (who reminds me of Wormtail in HP) slits his throat in a totally awesome way. They kept letting him go and I was all “Noooo whyyyyy kill him! Idiots!” and then BOOM – throat slit. Moral of the story: don’t kick your minions in the face.

Hobbits are bad ass

Tiny people kicking ass and taking names, like we always have. There are a handful of moments throughout LOTR when a passage comes up and Tolkien writes something along of the lines of “…and then Merry/Pippin/Sam had had enough” – that’s how you know you’re about to get to a good part.

Frodo is okay too.

Frodo, Bilbo and Gandalf basically go to a heroes’ retirement village

What’s up with that? Coolest retirement village ever? Yes, I want to hang out there and go lawn bowling.


Admission: I’m not crazy about this post, so I reserve the right to review it later and make updates as I see fit. I’m publishing it now because I’m impatient and wanted to get this up immediately upon finishing Return of the King but for various reasons that didn’t happen. I’m posting it now with the intention of revising it (read: fix and make better) later.

Bonne nuit!!

Tolkien, Round 2: The Two Towers (and a few notes on Allegiant)

I started The Two Towers a couple of days ago after finishing Allegiant. I have to admit, even though I wrote in my last post that I would be able to finish Allegiant within a week’s time, I didn’t actually believe that I would.  And then I did! Awesome. I credit two things to the accomplishment of this goal:

1) telling myself (sternly) to buckle down and read
2) shaming myself into reading more to balance the insane number of hours I’ve recently spent watching back to back episodes of Raising Hope on Netflix.

SIDE BAR: Please note that Raising Hope is awesome and hilarious. Here is the trailer:

In the end, I decided not to write a post for Allegiant and instead jump right into The Two Towers. Before moving on, however, I do want to acknowledge that Veronica Roth managed to end that series in a way that I was not anticipating at all. In fact when the “Big Denouement” did occur, I thought she was twisting my arm. I kept reading because I was so convinced that in a few more pages or chapters, something would happen to the effect of a Literary Gotcha* but the Gotcha never came. I was bewildered, dazed, and, I’m not ashamed to admit, I cried. I soldiered on and read through my tears, and now I can put that pain behind me and move on to some good old fashioned fantasy lit.

When I last left the gang, Boromir had tried (and failed) to get the ring from Frodo, which didn’t work out too well for him as I recall. Then Frodo and Sam had stowed away on a boat together to face the rest of their journey alone. Such brave lil’ hobbits, aren’t they?

My goal now is to finish The Lord of the Rings series before the end of the month, which means I need step up my game. Wish me luck!

*Literary Gotcha: 1 to be led to believe one thing and to later discover that the opposite is true; 2 a term I just made up (dibs on copyright!); 3 a literary device