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This is a staple of any fantasy collection. It's a small, nice looking simple cover that matches the rest of this set, at a reasonable cost. I was surprised to see some black and white line illustrations in it. Other reviewers have commented on the type being too small. Personally, I never noticed this at all. It seemed pretty standard size to me.
Arrived quickly, the book was in perfect condition and the story is timeless. Every home should have this classic, my only disappointment is the cover .. .. it's pretty boring and doesn't reflect the amazingness of the story.
Have you not read this book yet? You are missing something! So much better than lord of the rings - if you liked the Sam and Frodo sections. Should be part of every library - you will read it more than once!
I cannot say anything negative about The Hobbit or LOTR that's how much I love these books. Hadn't read either in years so with the release of the Hobbit trilogy films I figured it was time to get reacquainted. I'm so glad I did. This "little" book is jam packed with adventure and just plain fabulous. My mom read these books to me as a kid and I would recommend all mothers do that, what special memories that keep you coming back for more visits to the Shire and beyond. No doubt it will get read a few more times of the years.
This is quite a small volume, and slips easily into a bag or roomy pocket. It is printed on nice thick paper and the cover is also sturdy. The print is small (had to wear my strongest readers) but clear.
It was fun to read this "prequel" again. It is more lighthearted and fairy-tale than the Lord of the Rings volumes, but that too has its charms. Unfortunately, the recent Peter Jackson movie confused fairy-tale with cheesy campiness, but that is for another review! May Mr. Jackson regain his senses quickly.
The best parts of the book are the conversations Bilbo has with individuals, in particular Gollum and Smaug. Nice to hear it all again.
I found the book astounding different then that of the movies. It gripped you from beginning to end. It wasn't full of plot twists and turns that would make it less clear of the purpose of the story. Whereas in the movies they filled with more story then was necessary and Hollywoodized it. Most of all this book has no love story which was a nice change.
"In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort."
With these words we are introduced to Middle Earth. The Hobbit is a timeless classic, which is a tale of Bilbo Baggins, the wizard Gandalf, Gollum, and the spectacular world of Middle-earth recounts of the adventures of a reluctant hero, a powerful and dangerous ring, and the cruel dragon Smaug the Magnificent. This book was written in 1937 and even today it is a best seller all over the world. The way Tolkien narrates the story you will know he is a master of his trade right away from the first page. This book started it all, the Lord of the rings, Simarillion, Beren and Luthien, Children of Hurin and the multi-million dollar industry. But at it's heart this is a simple children's story which Tolkien wrote for his own children and that's why it works.
Attaching some pics for your benefit. Hope this review was helpful to you. Thanks for reading.
5.0 out of 5 starsThe Hobbit: Facsimile First Edition
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 15, 2016
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
This has been a long-delayed product, but I found it to be worth the wait. I was pleasantly surprised by how nice the slipcase was and it arrived here in the U.S. undamaged, which is not always the case. I had to order this from AmazonUK because AmazonUS cancelled the product, several times. And I wasn't going to wait for them to actually get it in stock. Because frequently many of the Tolkien offerings from AmazonUK never end up here in the U.S. To me, it's well worth international shipping.
As others have mentioned, the first edition of The Hobbit is not within most folks budget and so I was quite excited to see this offered many years ago. I'm not sure I am going to actual pore over it and check to see what the differences between the first edition and subsequent ones (Rateliff's The History of the Hobbit does that). But just to look at it and page through it is worth the purchase price.
The best way to enjoy and truly understand J R R Tolkien's classic masterpiece The Lord of the Rings is to invest a little time in reading The Hobbit. Not necessarily first, but certainly at some point. The writing styles of each book are quite different. The Hobbit was originally intended for the pleasure of children and was, I understand, created with that purpose in mind. Even so, it can be enjoyed by children of all ages.
5.0 out of 5 starsa timeless adventure for all ages
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 18, 2019
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
The Hobbit is a wondrous tale of adventure and heroism set in the fantasy realm of middle-earth. Bilbo Baggins, an unambitious Hobbit is unwillingly recruited as a burglar by a party of dwarves and sent on a most extraordinary adventure. Coming head to head against trolls, goblins, wolves and the mighty dragon Smaug, Bilbo faces his worst fears, makes some unlikely allies, travels further than ever before and is changed, forever.
Having watched the three Hobbit films a few years back, and having only a vague recollection of their events, I was unsure what to expect when I started this book, needless to say I thoroughly enjoyed it. I love reading classical literature that has this beautiful old-timey English and the Hobbit was no exception, the wonder and pureness of it never fails to transport me into days gone by.
Bilbo is a funny, likeable character who’s thoughts actions and conversations are so wonderfully innocent that I immediately fell in love with him. His character evolution throughout the book made reading this a true delight. My only complaint is that I didn’t read this sooner.
It really isn’t difficult to see why this book became a classic and I honestly believe that regardless of your age, knowledge of middle-earth or affinity for the fantasy genre, there’s something that everyone can take away from reading this.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 11, 2020
A child's story which I love and will start to read to my grandsons in the next few years as I did to my children. I think they love the tales of elves and dwarves and who knows what as much as I have done for nearly 60 years. It has an innocence and yet a depth of understanding of human nature that is all so true, and the road goes ever on.
5.0 out of 5 starsIf you're wondering whether to try this children's evergreen...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 30, 2012
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
...It may help you to know that the book began as a serial, invented by Tolkien to read aloud to his children on winter evenings after tea. This, I think, is what shapes it, and gives it its special flavour (very different from that of The Lord of the Rings or The Silmarillion).
The Hobbit is divided into nineteen short, episodic chapters, each satisfying in its own right, but each also whetting appetites for the next. And it's very much written not so much for the eye as for the ear. It has a wonderfully rich cast of characters with very different voices - the hobbit himself, the wizard Gandalf, dwarves, elves, men, a shapeshifting were-bear, eagles, wolves, giant spiders, trolls, goblins, the creepy Gollum and the wily dragon Smaug. Yet more diversity of tone is provided by the songs that variegate the prose. If you're the kind of parent who likes to send the children off to bed with a story, Tolkien has given you the perfect script - his ingenuity takes even the least actorly Mums and Dads and turns them into Streeps and Day-Lewises.
But what kind of tale is it, this 75-year-old classic? My list of monsters must have made it sound terrifying or even horrific, but rest assured, it isn't. It's what Hollywood would call an action comedy hybrid. Many of the baddies that the brave little hobbit encounters are almost as absurd as they are sinister, so that the scariness of the narrative is regularly tempered by amusement. Be warned, though, that the story does have an underlying seriousness. The hobbit does need to gradually grow in courage as his quest proceeds; he is confronted by a grave moral crisis; and not all of his companions escape the dangers of their adventure with their lives.
This hardcover edition includes Tolkien's own illustrations, some in colour, some black and white, and is to my mind almost the most desirable of all - my favourite of favourites being Harper's gorgeous slipcased de luxe edition, The Hobbit, in which Tolkien's monochrome art has been sensitively colourized. Alternatives include an edition with lavish colour paintings by Alan Lee, one of the concept artists who contributed to Peter Jackson's Tolkien movies (The Hobbit), and a luxurious edition published by the Folio Society and illustrated in stylish monochrome by Eric Fraser (The Hobbit or "There and Back Again"). Also, Bilbo's Last Song includes a series of Hobbit vignettes painted in jewel-like colours by Tolkien's own favourite illustrator, the late, great Pauline Baynes. There and Back Again: The Map of Tolkien's Hobbit is another gorgeous companion to the book that any Hobbit-lover would delight in.
5.0 out of 5 starsThe Hobbit: 70th Anniversary Edition
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 29, 2019
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Ive always tried to get into books but could never finish any. I am a big fan of The Hobbit and LOTR movies and thought to try this book. Ive been reading it here and there for a week now and I have never felt myself drift off so much while reading a book. Last night I sat up to 1am in front of a fire unable to put the book down. Highly recommend this book. (print is also a good size.) For sure buying LOTR hardcover set after this.
3.0 out of 5 starsGreat story, unfortunately this production has aged badly
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 24, 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )Verified Purchase
Originally recorded in 1968, this is a full cast Radio 4 production of the absolute classic The Hobbit. One of my favourite ever books, I have read it several times over the years.
I had never heard this audio rendering of the book, and looked forward very much to hearing it.
The production was actually recovered from an amateur tape recording of the original. The master copy having been wiped by the BBC some time following its original broadcast on radio. This explains the slightly sub-par quality of the audio - although it has to be said, it is still quite listenable.
Acting and casting is extremely good for the most part, with Paul Daneman as Bilbo and John Justin as Thorin Oakenshield being especially entertaining.
Unfortunately I personally feel that Heron Carvic as Gandalf does let the side down somewhat. His voice is rather meek, and not the dominant, masterful tones one might expect from such a commanding character in the story. He also seems to struggle with his lines at times, and just doesn't quite match up to the other cast members' performances. This is a real shame.
The narrative music is written and performed in a medieval style, which is refreshing and feels very authentic, but it is used too repetitively to book-end each section of the story, and it does begin to grate after a while. Not a major criticism, but something which could have been done somewhat better.
Most of the human, elf and dwarf voices are portrayed naturally as one might expect. However, the non-human voices (eagles, trolls, goblins and spiders) are heavily modified with some kind of frequency modulation of the type obviously employed by the Dr Who production team. As a result, all of these characters tend to come across as 'variations on a Dalek' which detracts greatly from their performances, and makes them difficult to understand. It is also rather harsh, and begins to grate on the ear after a while.
In summary then, a well produced script and excellent acting from most of the cast, let down by some very dated sound effects and mis-cast Gandalf.
No doubt in its day it was a cutting edge production. Unfortunately, time has not been kind to it, and I fear many modern day fans of the book will be somewhat disappointed.
Certainly worth a listen, but I'm not sure whether you'll want to re-visit it often.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 27, 2013
I remember reading this when I was 10, although I found the language hard the story had me hooked. Fast forward to being a married mother I have little time now to sit and enjoy the writen word and always miss my favourite classic stories. Since my husband is not a book person, prefering movies and video games I was always a little saddened that he never had the chance to enjoy this extraordinary tale so bought this to listen to in the car (my favourite place for audio books). Sitting and listening while stuck in traffic was bliss, being read to was comforting and calming and, well, I get to enjoy books again. My husband has said he will listen to it (he does enjoy spoken word in the car) and personally I can't wait for my son to be able to enjoy it (at 4 he is a little young to understand it all). The thing with Tolkien, at least for me will always be about taking me back to the magic of childhood, the fantacy world and creatures and the adventure, it will always be a classic and for people who can't manage or are unable to read the books, this is the next best thing to enjoy this timeless classic
5.0 out of 5 starsAn Unexpected Journey ... the beginning of an epic adventure
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 12, 2013
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I still remember the first time I read Tolkien's The Hobbit and was enthralled by it. As I was going to see the new movie, I thought I would re-read Bilbo's adventure as they were first imagined, by the great visionary Tolkien himself. So I began by downloading the Kindle edition and started, as did Bilbo, in 'a hole in the ground' in which the story begins. I was introduced to Gandalf again and met, as did Bilbo, his dwarf companions on his unexpected journey, one by one. I set out into the unknown as if it was the first time reading it again and found that I loved it just as much as I had the first time around. In fact, I think I love The Hobbit more now than when I first picked it up all those years ago as I have, since then, read its sequel and know how much hinges on seemingly insignificant events in this beautiful story. Tolkien is a master storyteller and his use of language is exquisite. The Hobbit was my first introduction to Tolkien and his wonderful world of Middle Earth. Charming, with more depth than perhaps given credit for on first reading, The Hobbit is sure to capture your heart and fire your imagination.
5.0 out of 5 stars70th Anniversary Hardback Edition
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 14, 2011
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
This is the first time I have read The Hobbit and I was thrilled to receive this edition as a gift. The 70th Anniversary hardcover edition is really quite beautiful and features Tolkien's own colourful artwork on the cover. There are also some lovely black and white illustrations within the text and some exquisite maps in the front and back covers. After reading this magical tale I can see why many people hail Tolkien as one of the fathers of fantasy literature - the characters are incredibly well-written and the story is captivating. I found myself laughing at the dwarves, rooting for the bumbling hobbit, Bilbo, and admiring the great wizard Gandalf on their adventure together through the mountains looking for treasure. I was hooked after a few pages and kept reading wondering what would happen next on their journey as they encounter goblins, spiders, elves and giant eagles. After the success of The Lord Of The Rings film adaptations I am thoroughly looking forward to seeing how The Hobbit is translated to screen soon. If you are a fan of Tolkien then I would recommend this fantastic hardback edition for your collection as the dustcover is a real work of art. I feel the beauty of the story deserves the great presentation of this colourful collectors edition.
The Hobbit, or There and Back Again is written as the memoirs of Bilbo Baggins, the Hobbit of Bag End. I first read it when I was young enough to be scared of trolls and goblins not to mention evil dragons. There are certain scenes from it that will remain ingrained on my brain for life and others that I can't really recall at all. That's age and not the quality of the book.
Tolkien can be ponderous at times but is far less so in The Hobbit than in The Lord of the Rings. In this book it's the Dwarves that sing, not the Elves. Tolkien does like his songs.
Bilbo embraces his adventurous side and sets out on the quest to reclaim treasure from the dragon Smaug. The book charts his encounters and the events along the way. It's a time of turmoil in Middle Earth, the era before the dominion of Men. There are dangers at every turn for a young Hobbit. He has his blade, Sting, taken from a troll hoard, and his wits to protect him.
The Hobbit was so successful in 1937 that Tolkien was asked to write a sequel and so was born the Lord of the Rings.
The Hobbit is a far easier read than LOTR and a child can make short work of it, but it is by no means exclusively a children's book. Readers of all generations will enjoy this book and it will be passed on from one generation to the next as a worthy way to absorb some literature.
It is with great delight that having re-read Tolkiens Hobbit I am satisfied all is well with the world and balance has been restored. Having recently watched Peter Jackson's dreadful 2nd film based on Tolkien's work I found myself yearning for the original work. Thankfully this is where I could imagine the world he created as he described it without the need for Hollywood style embellishment and reinvention designed solely for those who need action to hold their attention. I am not entirely critical of Jacksons work, for the recreation of Tolkien's work is masterful in places, but the introduction of an Elf/Dwarf love interest, the pursuit of the Dwarves on the river, the depiction of Thranduil to name but a few are simply too much to take. It's a shame really as a faithful recreation could have stayed in memory so much longer and been measured against the timeless creation Tolkien delivered. I love this book and recommend you read it to your children with the same enthusiasm that Tolkien gave to its creation, they will thank you for many years to come.