Wednesday, March 31, 2010

"Aragorn sped on up the hill."

I almost ran out of time in March to read The Two Towers for the Lord of the Rings Read-Along.  I was going to just let it go and not stress about it but then I decided at the last moment to use this as another "for enjoyment" book and just did a two day re-read of this wonderful story.

This is the second in the Fellowship trilogy -- the middle of what began as one journey and has become two.  The first part of the book follows one set of travelers and the second part follows the other set.  I won't write any more about the plot for those of you who haven't read The Fellowship of the Ring yet.

The first part of this book was far more enjoyable to me than the second part.  There are dedicated friends, joyful reunions and moments of true wonder dispersed throughout.  I enjoy the journeys of those choosing their own paths.  The second part seems much more predictable as there is little choice involved for the travelers.

This novel introduces some of the best characters in the series -- Faromir, Eomer and the fantastic Fangorn, a.k.a. Treebeard.  I also treasure the acts of love shown throughout the story -- Eomer for Theoden King, Sam for Frodo and many others who show love through loyalty.  In fact, I think it was brave of Tolkien to use the word "love" a few times in this book.  I find that it is a word not used often enough in non-romantic literature.

I am really looking forward to reading The Return of the King next month and I'm not sure I will be able to leave it until the end of the month!

Continuing forward with faithful friends,

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  1. Hooray! I'm glad you were able to find time to squeeze this in. I couldn't wait and dove right into the Return of the King after finishing The Two Towers last week. That ending makes it impossible to wait even though I know what's going to happen.

  2. Ack, I need to finish this tonight! This is my favorite of the three, and you're right, the relationships are portrayed really well.

  3. I actually preferred the second part of the book. I felt that the focus on three characters only heightened the drama and made it feel more intimate.

    Wow, you read the entire thing in two days? That's some speed-reading!

  4. Teresa - I'm hopefully going to get to Return of the King right around the middle of the month!

    Jennysbooks - I am definitely going to be re-reading these a bit sooner than the six or seven years break I took this time. :)

    E.L. - It's true that it was more intimate. But I love the grand scale of the first half! And I can read quite quickly when I take the time. It's just that I don't usually have much time these days!

  5. You are so right: there is a lot of love in these tales of strife. Not just words, but actions. I would include Faramir's (underappreciated) love for Denethor and Eowyn's (misguided?) love for Aragorn among them.

    Perhaps also Merry and Pippin, who started the journey out of love for Frodo, and spontaneously pledged their loyalty to their various lords. It's much more than a literary device to give us a window into Rohan and Gondor.