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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful
I bought this book along with the Two Towers and Return of the King Special Editions. The pattern on the spines of the three books match up to form an image of the White Tree of Gondor - it certainly looks good on the bookshelf!

This book is presented in a green/yellow coloured cloth bound hardcover that looks both attractive and durable. Inside, the first...
Published 6 months ago by Plank

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Slow but steady
You need time to get familiar with the world portrayed in this book. It took me 5 days to go past chapter 1, and then 3 days to finish the book. Now, I can't stop till the end of the journey, floating away with Mr Frodo.
Published 10 days ago by Shams Bhatti


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic story, expertly illustrated by Alan Lee, 1 Aug 2001
By A Customer
Not only does this book contain the fantastic beginning of the Lord of the Rings, it also contains fantastic illustrations by one of my favourite Tolkien artists. The one thing I like about the Fellowship of the Ring is seeing the transition from life in Hobbiton to life on the dangerous open road. A great book, a brilliant story...BUY IT NOW!!!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful productive begining, 2 Nov 2001
By A Customer
This book is excellent! It is about a Hobbit called Frodo Baggins who is related to the Hobbit Bilbo Bagins from the Hobbit. He is wisked off by Gandalf the wizard to go and destroy the magical ring that Bilbo once owned. Though the language is hard to understand, and it will take a while to get through, I believe that it is suitable for people above the age of eleven. I am thirteen and am enjoying the booke emensly. Five Stars!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quality book(s), 16 Mar 2014
By 
Darren (HUNTINGDON, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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Not going to say anything about the story. The production quality of the hardback book is superb. It feels fantastic in hand and looks fabulous on the bookshelf ... the trilogy placed side by side reveal a representation of the one tree. I also purchased an anniversary hardback edition of The Hobbit and it fits in nicely alongside them. Recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fellowship Of The Ring: JRR Tolkien, unabridged reading by Rob Inglis – The start of a tale that grows with the telling, 12 Nov 2013
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
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The Fellowship Of The Ring: JRR Tolkien, unabridged reading by Rob Inglis – The start of a tale that grows with the telling

First published in 1954 The Fellowship Of The Ring is the first part of the epic saga, and Tolkien’s masterpiece, The Lord Of The Rings. It has been a firm favourite of mine since I first read it over 25 years ago, and every time I return to the trilogy I find something new in this multilayered and deep piece of literature. I have worked my through it again recently, and with much temerity have decided to post a review of this stand out classic of classics.

In this first part of the trilogy, the Ring that Bilbo Baggins ‘acquired’ from Gollum in the Hobbit is passed to his nephew, Frodo. Gandalf informs Frodo that the ring is in fact deadly dangerous, and Frodo sets out on a desperate journey to the safety of Rivendell. There the true nature of the ring is learned, and a fellowship of elves, men, dwarves, hobbits and wizards sets off on an even more perilous quest.

It is, as the author notes in his charming foreword, a tale that grew with the telling. The early parts of the book are closer in style to the Hobbit, and compared to the epic nature and darker tone of some of the later sections these can seem still a little limited and at times almost childish, as though Tolkien is writing another children’s book. But the tale grows, Tolkien’s skill and imagination grows, and soon this is a thrilling, gripping, complex tale.

I find when reading this that it not just the plot that I love, but the completeness of Tolkien’s world. He has developed a whole history, mythology, geography and etymology for it, all incredibly detailed. The book does not describe these in detail, but has frequent sideways references to them. This is what sets it apart from other fantasies, the feeling of a complete reality in which the adventures are taking place, a rich and textured world. This adds a depth to the books which few others can match.

Again in his foreword, Tolkien mentions that there are parts of the book that some people dislike, yet others love, and that few people like all of the book. I have to agree with this, much as I love the tale, I find the early sections detailing the adventures as far as the land of Bree a little tiresome at times, and I have always thought that the character of Tom Bombadil is somewhat out of place in the book. After Bree however, the adventure kicks into high gear and I am totally immersed in the tale. This is just my opinion, I know others who will defend Bombadil’s inclusion to the death.

In all this is a great read in it’s own right, ending on a great cliffhanger that leads into the second book. It has a lot of high adventure, and Tolkien’s rich multilayered tale telling. It’s a classic of it’s time, and has to get 5 stars.

This unabridged reading from Rob Inglis is pretty good. For the most part it is excellent, though he can be a little flat in his delivery at times, and some of his voices are ill suited to the characters – Lobelia Sackville-Baggins’ deep gruff tones are a particular miscalculation. But for the most part he gets it spot on, and his Jamaican Windsor Davies voice for Tom Bombadil is a particular delight, indeed I almost like the character in the audio book, whereas I usally skip past his section when reading the printed word. All in all it’s a good reading. At 16 discs and clocking in at 19 hours 10 minutes of listening, this is perfect for the car on long journeys! I have to say that I listened to it back and forth to work over about a week, and my interest was maintained throughout, a testament to the skill of both author and reader. 5 stars all round.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fellowship of the Ring: 50th Anniversary Edition [Hardcover], 12 July 2013
By 
Nat Whilk (Lincolnshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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An unfortunate consequence of the success of The Lord of the Rings has been that frequent resetting has engendered errors by the hundred. In some copies, the ring verse has lost its last line; in others, The Council of Elrond its last two sentences. The chief virtue of this 50th Anniversary Edition of The Fellowship of the Ring (ISBN 9780007203543) is that its text, prepared by some of the most eminent Tolkienologists on Arda, is undoubtedly the most accurate ever published.

Based on Tolkien's own second edition, the book omits his 1954 Foreword, which he himself came to regret as misconceived, but includes his revised Foreword of 1966 and his 1966 Prologue. We're also given a seven page Note on the Text by Douglas A. Anderson, as well as a four page Note on the 50th Anniversary Edition by Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull.

Tolkien would probably chuckle if he knew that two of his frustrated wishes for his book have finally been granted half a century after he proposed them. The tengwar ring inscription has at last been printed in fiery red instead of black; and a tipped in, fold-out plate reproduces his laboriously crafted, battle-distressed pages from the Book of Mazarbul, already well known to fans from their appearance in a Tolkien calendar and then in Pictures by J. R. R. Tolkien. The inscription on the Door of Moria, by contrast, remains in its familiar black on white, a retreat from the arguably more fitting white on black alternative ventured in the large format hardcover edition featuring paintings by Alan Lee. The only other illustrations are Christopher Tolkien's canonical red and black maps of part of the Shire and of the west of Middle-earth, the latter in its much improved, Unfinished Tales version but now reduced to only about a quarter of its original area. Readers with eyes as keen as Gwaihir's may regret that lines that were once firm and true are now pixelatedly fuzzy; those who would prefer a larger map should seek out the poster-sized version redone by John Howe (The Maps of Tolkien's Middle-earth: Special Edition).

The design of the text is very similar to that of the second edition, the only obvious difference being that the PostScript Monotype Plantin font is slightly smaller than the Imprint font of yore. The traditional tengwar and runes still adorn the title page, now accompanied by a JRRT monogram. L.E.G.O., Harper Collins's Italian printer, has printed the text crisply on a smooth, cream-coloured paper much like that often used by Everyman's Library, a touch less opaque than would be ideal but not to the point of being objectionable.

The book is signature bound with a black and yellow headband, and comes in a robust black cover with elegant gilt lettering. It lies nicely flat when opened. The dust jacket, matt and reminiscent of parchment but with a tough plastic lining, allows us to enjoy a motif painted by Tolkien himself, in which Sauron's Eye stares at us through the Ruling Ring and its tengwar, while Vilya, Nenya and Narya jointly confront his malevolence. The jacket's English lettering is printed in a striking copper foil, which lamplight kindles to a gleam that's rather beautiful.

This admirable, almost perfect edition of Tolkien's masterpiece probably comes closer than any other to bringing us his book in the form that he desired. Warmly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tolkien is a Genius., 2 Jun 2013
I wish it need not have happened in my time," said Frodo.
"So do I," said Gandalf, "and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us."

PLOT

This is the Story of Frodo Baggins, a little Hobbit with a big heart, living in the Shire, Middle Earth. Frodo lives with his Uncle, Bilbo Baggins in their house under a hill in Hobbiton. Bilbo has a very treasured possession, a magic ring, that he found on his adventures many years ago. But he has no idea of it's true power.

After Bilbo's 111th Birthday, he leaves the Shire, in search of more adventure, and finally, somewhere quiet where he can finish writing the book about his adventures. Bilbo vows to leave the ring to Frodo, but Gandalf, a dear friend of Bilbo's, and a Wizard, has a hard time persuading him to part with it.

Frodo takes responsibility for the ring, and for the rest of Bilbo's possessions, with no idea of the horror that is coming his way. He must flee the Shire, take the ring to Rivendell, the city of Elves, and seek advice on how to destroy it.

With a fellowship with him including three more Hobbits, an Elf, a Dwarf, and three men;including Gandalf, Frodo must travel to the land of Mordor, and destroy the ring once and for all.

MY OPINION

Let me just begin by saying that Tolkien is a genius.I'll admit, I had this book on my bookcase for a few years and I didn't read it. I attempted to when I was younger, and I couldn't get into it. But as I've grown older, I could appreciate this book for what it is. And what it is is an incredibly well written novel, that has stood the test of time, and I'm certain people will read it for many more years to come. The characters have so much depth, they all come from very different backgrounds, and each one has a detailed history.

THE AUTHOR

Tolkien has created a world, not just a novel. He has created new languages, amazing settings, and has captured the imaginations and hearts of people all over the world.I'm so glad that I was able to get into this book, and enjoy it for the work of art that is truly is.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars LOTR Audiobook, 27 May 2013
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Arrived promptly and well packed. I bought this for my father as I have the same audiobook in cassette form and absolutely love it. Rob Inglis is the perfect narrator, he brings so much life and character to this wonderful book. This is by far the best audiobook version of LOTR and is a joy. I have listened to my copy over and over. Very highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The War Of The Ring Begins, 3 Sep 2012
The Fellowship of the Ring:

Though receiving mixed reviews, there is little doubt that "The Fellowship Of The Ring" stands as starting a new era for fantasy literature. Prior to its publication (July 24, 1954), fantasy adventures were aimed at young readers, including Tolkien's previous work - "The Hobbit" which was published nearly 17 years prior. While "The Fellowship Of The Ring" still centers on the adventures of the child-like Hobbits, the material is much darker and more serious than its predecessor. Tolkien also showed that one can deal with serious themes (machine vs. nature) in fantasy writing.

Tolkien preferred the name "The War of the Ring" to the eventual title of "The Lord of the Rings", and he wanted it published in a single volume as part of a two-volume set which would have also contained "The Silmarillion", but Tolkien did not have much influence at that time, and so the Publisher dictated that the single work would be divided into three books, the first of which is "The Fellowship Of The Ring". Each of the three volumes is then divided into two books, though this volume also contains a prologue entitled "Concerning Hobbits" which summarizes the events in "The Hobbit" as well as provides background material about what type of beings Hobbits are.

The first book is titled "The Ring Sets Out" and covers the events of Bilbo Baggins leaving the Shire after his birthday, the transfer of the ring from Bilbo to his nephew, Frodo Baggins, and the adventures of Frodo, Samwise Gamgee (Sam), Merriadoc Brandybuck (Merry), and Peregrin Took (Pippin) as they escape from the shire and travel to Rivendale. In addition, the reader is introduced to Gandalf, Strider/Aragorn, Fredegar Bolger (Fatty), Farmer Maggot, Tom Bombadil, and Glorfindel. The reader is also introduced to the Nazgl, who and pursuing the ring. The events in this book take place over numerous years, though once the hobbits leave the shire it is a shorter period of time.

The second book is titled "The Ring Goes South", though it has also been called "The Journey of the Nine Companions" and covers the time at Rivendale. There we learn about Saruman turning on Gandalf and imprisoning him at Orthanc, and we meet the other members of the fellowship, Boromir, Legolas, and Gimli. In addition there is Glóin (Gimli's father whom the reader would have met in the Hobbit), and Galdor. The book then covers their travels, from the failed attempt to cross the Misty Mountains at Caradhras through their travel through Moria, to the forest of Lothlórien where they meet Celeborn and Galadriel. The book ends with the breaking of the fellowship at Amon Hen. Frodo and Sam have left the others, and an Orc attack is causing confusion with the remaining members.

As much as I enjoyed the movies which were based on these books, they are simply do not capture significant pieces of the story. Wonderful characters are lost, as are nuances and events which are simply cut out. Some things are changed in the movies, perhaps to make them easier to follow, so while I can certainly understand why one might enjoy the films, I would suggest that you do not deprive yourself of the opportunity to enjoy the books and the original story.

The Two Towers:

Which Two?

I remember reading an article where the author discussed which towers were possibly the two towers referred to in the title of the second novel of "The Lord of The Rings". Candidates included Ortanc, Barad-dr, Ecthelion, Minas Morgul, and Cirith Ungol. One could have included the Hornburg in the list as well, but this particular discussion did not include it. The author discussed several pairs of options, but for me the answer was simple, as it indicates at the end of authorized Ballentine edition of "The Fellowship of the Ring" that it is Ortahnc and Minus Morgal and that is where the action is focused for most of the two books contained in the "The Two Towers". However, if you watch the film, it strongly points to two towers as Orthanc and Barad-dr. To confuse matters more, there is a letter from Tolkien to Rayner Unwin where he states that the two towers are Orthanc and Cirith Ungol, but remember that it wasn't Tolkien that split the work into three volumes and he was never happy with the title, and apparently he changed his mind later as he is the author of the note I mentioned above. Of course, to enjoy the book it really doesn't matter which two towers the title actually refers to, but it was an interesting discussion.

I believe that the second volume of a trilogy is the most difficult one to evaluate. The reader is coming into a story which has already begun, and left with no real ending. In the case of "The Two Towers", Tolkien navigates those difficulties quite well. Though certainly one should read "The Fellowship of the Ring" first, there is a brief synopsis, and while each of the two books in the volume leaves the story hanging a bit, they are certainly reasonable places to leave the story off. "The Two Towers" was originally published on November 11th of 1954.

Book III is titled "The Treason of Isengard" and covers the stories of all the characters except Frodo and Sam (who are the subjects of Book IV). It starts where Book II left off, with Aragorn hearing Boromir's horn. This book introduces numerous new characters such as Treebeard, Éomer, King Théoden, Lady Éowyn, and of course Grima Wormtongue. It is a tale rich in characters, and in large battles, heroism, and last ditch efforts. The book ends with victory against Saruman, but that is over-shadowed by the coming battle with Sauron and the forces of Mordor, as well as the lack of knowledge of what has become to Frodo and Sam.

Book IV is titled "The Ring Goes East", though it has also been called "The Journey of the Ringbearers" and by contrast with Book III there are very few characters. Frodo, Sam, and Gollum are the main characters of this book, though we do meet Faramir during the tale of the ring-bearers as they take the ring to Mordor. This book as a darker ending than Book III, as the book closes with Frodo having been poisoned by the venom of Shelob and has been taken by the enemy, with Sam struggling to rescue him.

As with the first book in the series when compared with the movie, I personally prefer the book, though I have enjoyed the movie as well. However long the movie is, it is a condensed version of the book, and you will miss out on many significant characters and events, as well as be unaware of the changes which were made for whatever reason. The movies were a valiant effort to bring this effort to the screen, and they honor Tolkien's overall story, but to fully appreciate what Tolkien created, you need to read the books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spectacular, 6 July 2012
This review is from: The Fellowship of the Ring: The Lord of the Rings, Part 1: The Fellowship of the Ring v. 1 (Kindle Edition)
I bought the kindle eddition of this book and it is flawless. The story its self is absolutely breath taking. The amount of detail makes Middle Earth seem like a historic world we are only begining to uncover. The detailed discriptions, amazing scenery and gripping plot make this a must have. Every person should read these books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterwork of the Imagination, 11 Dec 2011
By 
David Ford "Genre junkie" (Cheltenham) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Fellowship of the Ring: The Lord of the Rings, Part 1: The Fellowship of the Ring v. 1 (Kindle Edition)
As with its predecessor The Hobbit, it is extremely hard to say anything new about this book. However, I may as well add my voice to the thousands who have come before me...

This, then is the first chunk of Tolkien's magnum opus and the book that launched an entire genre; while fantasies existed in literature before, elements from this story have been imitated, pastiched and referenced by countless imitators.

The Lord of the Rings is the product of an incredible amount of work on the part of its creator; every facet of the world's languages, histories and cultures is detailed down to the last detail. However, this would count for nothing if all that worldbuilding had not been welded to a brilliant adventure story.

Every scene in the book is unforgettable, from the House of Elrond to the Mines of Moria. Each new incident or character adds something to the epic quest, and what characters they are. The touching loyalty between Sam and Frodo, the spiky rivalry between the elf Legolas and the Dwarf Gimli, the nobility of Aragorn and the pride of Boromir - all beautifully drawn.

There are perhaps overindulgences - the deluge of names is daunting for first-time readers, Tom Bombadil and many of the songs seem slightly frivolous among the more serious adventures - but this is very much my personal taste, and stem largely from Tolkien's wish to share as much of his world with the reader as possible.

Middle-Earth lives and breathes, and is much a character as any hobbit or wizard. The land seems infused with both magic as well as an underlying melancholia, as that magic fades with the changing of the world.

It seems inconceivable that any fan of fantasy or adventure has NOT read this grand work yet, but if you have not, grab this now. Enjoy the imagination, the thrills, and the magic; you'll not regret it.
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