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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Hobbit: JRR Tolkien - The greatest children's book ever.
JRR Tolkien's `The Hobbit' is, of course, one of the greatest children's books to have been written in the twentieth century. Based on the stories he told to his children and originally published in 1937, it is an almost perfect blend of fantasy, magic and adventure. It follows the adventures of one Bilbo Baggins, as he sets off with thirteen dwarves and a wizard to...
Published on 23 Oct 2012 by Victor

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56 of 65 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Martin Shaw Narration of The Hobbit (Abridged)
This audio version of The Hobbit tells the first tale of Bilbo's adventures with his trusted Dwarf companions and of course Gandalf. It tells the tale of their journey to gain wealth and treasure and all of the dangers they experience along the way. It more importantly tells how Bilbo comes across "The Ring" and its affects on him. From this the follow up story...
Published on 19 Mar 2002 by mike@wottle.free-online.co.uk


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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Hobbit: JRR Tolkien - The greatest children's book ever., 23 Oct 2012
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
JRR Tolkien's `The Hobbit' is, of course, one of the greatest children's books to have been written in the twentieth century. Based on the stories he told to his children and originally published in 1937, it is an almost perfect blend of fantasy, magic and adventure. It follows the adventures of one Bilbo Baggins, as he sets off with thirteen dwarves and a wizard to recover a great treasure stolen from the dwarves by Smaug the dragon. Along the way they get into various scrapes with goblins, trolls, elves, shape shifters and, of course, a dragon. Through a mix of extreme good luck and his own resourcefulness Bilbo comes through all these adventures, only to find things are not as he left them at home.

It's a great story and works on many levels. For the younger reader there is the straight adventure story, which many will find thrilling. For the older reader there is the subtle growth in Bilbo's character, as he changes over the story from a passenger on the expedition to a main player and the person people look to for help. There is a study of human nature, and the effects of greed upon people. In some respects it is a morality play. But for all that, at heart, it is a great entertainment. There is a reason it is still so affectionately regarded by readers world wide of all ages. 5 stars.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A treasure-trove, 23 Sep 2004
This review is from: The Annotated Hobbit (Hardcover)
I'm amazed no one has bothered to write a review of this before now.
Annotated versions of everyone's favourite classics are impossible to resist, and this is no exception. Beautifully designed and produced, everything about this book smacks of love and dedication, from the endless fascinating notes that fill in every conceivable aspect of this famous tale, to the gallery of pictures - who would have thought Bilbo Baggins could look so different, depending on which edition of the book you happen to have stumbled upon.
Do get this if you can, it's a thing of beauty.
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172 of 193 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully illustrated, 5 Jan 2002
This review is from: The Hobbit (Hardcover)
I decided to invest in this classic but I wasn't sure which edition to buy; the boxed set or the one book. I love hardback books, especially slightly oversized and I'm glad I decided to buy this one. The dust cover advertises the beautiful illustrations inside. It also has embossed gold foil writing and at the top and bottom the foil backed Runes. The bottle green hardback is gold embossed on the spine, and depicts in gold the Smaug (dragon) on the front. Inside you will find at the front Thror's map and at the back a map of Wilderland, to guide you through the journey of the heroes, whilst reading the book.
The pages are generously sized, clear and beautifully illustrated with Alan Lee's drawings in pencil and full colour throughout (I wish it had the old tissue paper covering the illustrations of bygone days!). There is also a Lord of the Rings edition in the same format. It is beneficial to read the Hobbit before the Lord of the Rings.
The Hobbit describes the adventures of a friendly, roughly 3 foot 6 hobbit called Bilbo. He is volunteered into an adventure beyond the scope of most hobbit's lives by a kindly old family friend, Gandalf the wizard. His journey is also initiated and accompanied by fourteen dwarves. Bilbo's contract is to steal the treasure back for the dwarves, stolen and held by Smaug the Magnificent. Smaug is a large and very perilous dragon. Bilbo even surprises himself by becoming a hero, despite his slight size. This is an enchanting book; Tolkien has a rare gift in creating books which capture the imagination of any age. It is beautifully written, comical, imagination stretching but with the skillfulness of convincing the reader that the story is factual and passing over a great empathy, tugging at the reader's heartstrings over the adventure's endearing characters. A must read book.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very big adventure, 17 Nov 2005
By 
Sally-Anne "mynameissally" (Leicestershire, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
The respectable Mr Bilbo Baggins, was extremely content and comfortable in his cosy little hobbit hole. He really didn't want an adventure so the wizard, Gandalf, had to trick him into joining the party of dwarves and helping them to recover their kingdom and their treasure from the dragon, Smaug. It was a dark and dangerous quest that took them through the realms of elves, orcs, eagles, a skin-changer, giant spiders and men, via mountains, caves and forests. Bilbo lost his buttons and his handkerchiefs but he found an amazing ring, made some wonderful life-long friends and learned what sort of person he was - not timid after all, but brave, hardy and resourceful when in a tight spot.
It's been one of my favourite stories since I first heard it, many years ago. It was read to our class in about 1961. Since then I've read it several times, listened to the BBC Radio 4 dramatisation of it, listened to Martin Shaw's excellent abridged reading and now I've listened to this unabridged reading by Rob Inglis. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It's true that this version does seem to have been read with the younger listener in mind, but I didn't find the character voices excessively exaggerated. It's a matter of personal taste, where you draw the line, of course. I will certainly listen to both the Rob Inglis (for the full story, beautifully told) and Martin Shaw (for a more adult orientated reading) audiobooks again and again. The BBC dramatisation (this is where I draw the line) is aimed squarely at the youngest audience however, and I would not want to listen to that production again. I've also listened to Rob Inglis reading the unabridged audiobook of Lord of the Rings, where he employs a more serious tone. After enjoying that enormously - and satisfied that he'd done Tolkien's great legend full justice - I knew I wanted to hear him reading The Hobbit. I was not disappointed and would have no hesitation in recommending this unabridged version to anyone who likes listening to stories.
As a previous reviewer has mentioned, it would have been good to have a map with the audiobook. I referred to the one in my copy of the book, which I can now visualise in any case after so many readings.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitive, erudite and delightful, 11 Oct 2004
By 
R. Sinclair "RoyS." (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: The Annotated Hobbit (Hardcover)
This is a wonderful book and so much more than a definitive text if such could exist, as it contains a wealth of information in the annotations that make it a must read for anyone interested in folklore, mythology or the origin of obscure words and phrases. Tokein fans sould already have it on their shelves. It provides a wealth of background info on Tolkeins sources as well as details of various non-english editions including many illustrations that are unlikely to be seen anywhere else.
The annotations are presented in a convenient way that does not interfere with a straight reading of the text but allows simple and straightforward reference to them without losing the flow of the text
Far from detracting, as heavy annotations can so often do, the annotations here seem to bring the story even more to life and add depth and character and perhaps explains why Tolkeins tales are so popular as new dimensions are added to myths we are all to some degree already probably familiar with.
As someone who used the phrase to 'bag off' when skipping off for an extra snack at lunchtime when younger I was delighted to discover the origin of the surname Baggins. An absolute delight.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfection in a box., 15 Sep 2012
By 
Glenn Cook (South Cave, near Hull UK) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Once and a while a great book is matched by a wonderful full cast BBC production and this dear friend is just that.

Over 4 Hours the well loved tale is woven and performed for your ears and delight.

I use the word delight for who ever loves the story will simply love this production.

4 cassettes each of one hour contains nine episodes of the story.

And what a story it is..

Dwarfs, dragons, Gold, Eleves, a quest, Trolls, Wargs and eagles but above all a Hobbit.

This edition is packed in a handsom smart dark green box with gold lettering and it contains four smart gold innercards. It really matches the production.

A confession? I loved the Lord of the Rings BUT actually prefer the Hobbit.

It is a perfect tales, well wriiten and in this format so well performed.
100 per cent recommended.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There and back again in style, 18 Feb 2004
By 
Marco Busani "Proven Intellect" (Edgware, London) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Hobbit (Hardcover)
The Hobbit is the prologue to Lord of the Rings and is more of a children's fantasy novel as opposed to an adult one. Don't let that discourage you though, as The Hobbit is an enjoyable read for all ages alike.
Reading this book will help enhance your enjoyment of LOTR as there is a lot of background information, introductions to certain characters, locations and artifacts that are prominent in that trilogy. The novel is centred on Bilbo Baggins and his quest to help the dwarves retrieve their treasure trove from Smaug the dragon.
Bilbo gradually increases in confidence and capability as the novel progresses and the dwarves opinion of him improves radically. From Gloin's "little fellow bobbing and puffing on the mat" at the start of the novel to Balin's "Good old Bilbo" some 8 chapters in.
Tolkien gives the reader an early introduction to the slippery Gollum and The Riddles in the Dark chapter is one of the most impressive in the novel. Bilbo's one on one conversation with Smaug is also particularly enjoyable.
The novel has plenty of depth to it taking the reader from the endearing Shire to a narrow escape from a troll's banquet, from capture by the goblins and wargs to an encounter with the formidable Beorn etc. The novel draws to a close with the grand Battle of Five Armies and Thorin's repentance. There is plenty in here to keep the reader engaged.
If I had one small criticism of the Hobbit it is the fact that Tolkien opts not to individualise the Dwarf characters enough. Other than Thorin, Balin, Bombur, Fili and Kili little is known about the characters of the rest of the dwarves.
This deluxe edition is generously illustrated by Alan Lee with extensive full page colour illustrations aswell as smaller black & white diagrams. The gold colour cover and nice maps help complete the package. This is certainly the edition to opt for and the Hobbit is an effective introduction to the world of Tolkien.
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36 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece!, 8 Jan 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: The Hobbit (Hardcover)
The Hobbit along with The Lord of The Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien in my opinion must be one of the best books ever written. I thought to myself is it worth spending £60 on this special edition though. However when I received it I knew it was money well spent. The quality of the book is amazing as they have used good quality paper which is brilliant white and means the text is crisp and clear unlike the majority of books. Also the colour illustrations are of superb print quality, not forgetting Thror's Map which folds out and changes when held to the light, altogether there are 18 illustrations all well worth it. There is even a ribbon page marker which is a pleasant rarity in modern books. The only thing I think they could have improved on, in my opinion, is the cover which is very plain and doesn't do much for the book.
So, although a bit expensive, I think that once you have this book you won't regret buying it and will want to buy The Lord of The Rings which has also been published in this special edition.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien, 6 Dec 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: The Hobbit (Mass Market Paperback)
A great book and a great lead to The Lord Of The Rings. A hobbit (Bilbo Baggins) was swept from his home in a hill to go on a great adventure through mountains, forests and a dragon in hope of finding a tresure. With the help of Gandalf (a wizard), 13 dwarves and a whole load of other magical cretures, will Bilbo reach the treasure before he gets killed ?
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42 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tolkien's classic, but with a little bit of added magic!, 5 Oct 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: The Hobbit Gift Pack (Hardcover)
This is the timeless classic of J.R.R. Tolkiens' 'The Hobbit', the story is a timeless tale of Hobbits, wizards, Dwarves and dragons. The tale will keep you entertained for years. The added bonus of this pack is the C.D. of Tolkien reading the first encounter with Gollum. This is just wonderful as you start to imagine what Tolkien was creating, and the different charcters' actions within the book. The extras also include an illustrated map, and limited postcards which are colourful and excluive to this pack. I recommend this pack to all collectors of Tolkien, but also to new commers.
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The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien (Audio CD - 19 Feb 2009)
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