Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten… Books I Could Re-Read Forever


Welcome to Top Ten Tuesday – a weekly feature from The Broke and the Bookish, now hosted by ThatArtsyReaderGirl. Expect a new top ten list every week!


| Top Ten… Books I Could Re-Read Forever |

Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday! This week we’re looking at the Top Ten books we could re-read forever.

There are so many books I would happily pick up and read again and again and, in the past few years, this list has only grown. Keeping this Top Ten to only ten books was, therefore, quite a challenge. But, as with all these lists, there are those books that ultimately deserve a place.

These are the books that I adored as a child and inspired my love of the weird, the magical, the fantastic and the witty; these are the books that will always have a place on my bookshelf.

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| 1. |

The Lord of the Rings

by J.R.R. Tolkien

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| 2. |

The Hobbit

by J.R.R. Tolkien

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| 3. |

The Silmarillion

by J.R.R. Tolkien

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| 4. |

Harry Potter

by J.K. Rowling

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| 5. |

The Little White Horse

by Elizabeth Goudge

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| 6. |

Pride and Prejudice

by Jane Austen

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| 7. |

The Chronicles of Narnia

by C.S. Lewis heart

| 8. |

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland + Through the Looking Glass

by Lewis Carroll
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| 9. |

The Secret Garden

by Frances Hodgson Burnett

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| 10. |

The Weirdstone of Brisingamen

by Alan Garnerheart

Which books would you re-read again and again? If you would like to join in with Top Ten Tuesday, head on over to ThatArtsyReaderGirl and sign up!

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This Week by Proxy: 19 – 25 February


Welcome to This Week by Proxy. Join me as I look back on the past week to see which books I’ve read, the reviews I’ve posted and the goals I’ve completed.


| This Week by Proxy: 19 – 25 February 2018 |

Once again, I’ve seemingly been mired under a never-ending to-do list – which didn’t even manage to include a review! At least this week I managed to finish two books, which is a far cry better than the last. I’ve also moved on to my first re-read of The Fellowship of the Ring in preparation for future There and Back Again posts – and because I couldn’t resist starting it already! (Mostly because I couldn’t resist starting already). And I can’t even describe my joy at picking up a book I used to re-read on a yearly basis.

I hope you’ve all had wonderful weeks, happy reading everybody!


| Books Read |

| 1. |

Spellslinger by Sebastien de Castell

With an interesting magic system, a witty narrator and twists and turns a-plenty, the first book in the trilogy of the same title is an exciting young adult fantasy that had me tearing through its pages. (Though not really as I’m very gentle with my books… also it was on kindle).

| 2. |

Lois the Witch by Elizabeth Gaskell

Lois the Witch is a short story by Elizabeth Gaskell published in 1861. This piece of historical fiction, depicting a young girl’s experience of the Salem witch trials, is a dark, depressing and incredibly well written tale.

 


| Posts |

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten… Books I’m No Longer Interested In Reading

Teaser Tuesdays: February 20 – Spellslinger by Sebastien de Castell + The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Waiting on Wednesday: The Bitter Twins by Jen Williams

Friday Firsts: Lois the Witch by Elizabeth Gaskell

The Friday Face-Off: The Staircase

Chapter + Verse – The Hobbit: Chapter III – A Short Rest


| February Goal Progress |

To read four books

Status: 4 of 4 Complete

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To write a review once a week

Status: 2 of 4 Complete


What have you been reading this week? Have you accomplished any goals?

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Chapter + Verse – The Hobbit: Chapter III – A Short Rest

Welcome to There and Back Again: A Journey Through Middle Earth – an indefinite season of all things Tolkien here at Books by Proxy. Join me as I make my journey through the most defining literature of my childhood, and unravel the details behind one of the most spectacular fantasy worlds ever made.


| Introduction |

Welcome to the third post of Chapter and Verse! This is a brand new weekly feature where I will be re-reading and analysing every chapter of The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien as part of my indefinite There and Back Again season.

If anyone wishes to join in with the re-read, please feel free to do so – the comments are open to anything and all things Tolkien. And for those of you yet to discover The Hobbit, there will be spoilers a-plenty throughout these posts.

The Hobbit

by J.R.R. Tolkien

| Chapter III: A Short Rest |

Subsequent to their encounter with the trolls, and with a feeling of danger both before and behind them, the company continue on their journey through desolate wastes, unexpected valleys and dark ravines. As Bilbo wistfully reminisces about home, Gandalf explains that they are headed to Rivendell, to rest, recover and resupply what had been lost on their journey.

Following a trail marked with white stones, they are led on a difficult path to the secret valley of Rivendell. As they descend, they hear the elves laughing and singing from the trees, and Bilbo is surprised to hear that they know his name. In haste for supper, the company is directed to the Last Homely House, which they find with its doors flung wide in welcome.

After a stay of two weeks, the company find they are fully refreshed and recovered of all their ills. On the evening before their departure, the master of the house, Elrond, examines the swords retrieved from the troll hoard, and explains that they were made by the High Elves of the West in Gondolin for the Goblin-wars. Thorin promises to keep the sword and use it well.

Learned in runes of all kinds, Elrond then examines the old map. Holding it up to the moonlight, he discovers that the secret to opening the hidden entrance to the Lonely Mountain is written in moon-letters upon the parchment. Its naming of Durin’s Day, however, troubles Thorin as such a time is hard to predict.

The next morning the company depart from Rivendell in high spirits and with a clearer knowledge of the road ahead.

| Commentary |

This relatively short chapter introduces the reader to one of the most prominent locations in Middle Earth lore, Rivendell, along with one of its most well known characters, Elrond. It is also host to one of the biggest disparities between The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, that of the character of the elves.

Beginning with a description of the journey from Trollshaws to the hidden valley, A Short Rest gives a relatively clear depiction of the outlying landscape, indicating the hazards and the length of the journey ahead:

“They saw that the great mountains had marched down very near to them.” 

These descriptions provide a clear contrast between Rivendell and the surrounding wilderness and, though different in tone and length to the found in the subsequent novels, their quality is unquestionably Tolkien. Interestingly, however, the path to Rivendell is marked out by a trail of white stones; a detail which continues the fairytale-like quality of  the narrative. 

The shortness of this chapter is weighed by the length at which the company is supposed to have stayed there – “They stayed long in that good house, fourteen days at least.” Rather than elaborate however, the narrator briefly summarises this respite in their journey, of which, “there is little to tell.” This can be considered a means of maintaining the momentum of the adventure as later in the narrative we are told, “I wish I had time to tell you even a few of the tales or one or two of the songs that they heard in that house.”

The company’s first encounter with the elves depicts them as being a merry and mischievous race who find great enjoyment in laughing and singing songs. The verse in this chapter, with its abundance of tril-lil-lil-lolly’s, appears very contradictory to what we now understand the character of Tolkien’s elves to be and, reading in retrospect, is a little harder to enjoy.  The good humoured – if a little rude – comments made by the elves to Bilbo and Thorin are similarly contrary but help maintain the less-serious tone of this book.

In describing the Last Homely House as, “perfect, whether you liked food, or sleep, or work, or story-telling, or singing, or just sitting and thinking best, or a pleasant mixture of them all”, we are given a depiction that ties accordingly with our experience in The Lord of the Rings. And though the elves seem a little disparate to those found in rest of Tolkien lore, the character of Elrond is in fact reasonably similar:

“He was as noble and as fair in face as an elf-lord, as strong as a warrior, as wise as a wizard, as venerable as a king of dwarves, and as kind as summer.”

Chapter III: A Short Rest is a brief interlude in the ensuing adventure, allowing questions to be answered, bodies and minds to recover, and another pocket of Middle Earth to be uncovered. And though it throws up some contradictions and, as adults, can appear a little silly in places, my only memory of Rivendell and the elves from childhood is that of sheer enjoyment.

What did you think of the company’s encounter with Rivendell? Please leave a comment below!

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Teaser Tuesdays: February 20


Welcome to Teaser Tuesdays – a weekly feature hosted by The Purple Booker. Expect a new teaser every week!


| Teaser Tuesdays: February 20 |

Spellslinger

Book One of Spellslinger

by Sebastien de Castell

Fantasy | 416 Pages | Published by Hot Key Books in 2017


“She said nothing in reply, merely leaned back in her chair, looking placidly at the wall in front of her as if it were a peaceful vista. The spells lighting up he skin beneath the silken fabrics she wore shifted and shimmered, her features changing back and forth, sometimes young and beautiful, almost innocent. Other times she looked as old as every one of her three hundred years.

~ Chapter 31: The Cell | 64% | Spellslinger by Sebastien de Castell


| Synopsis |

There are three things that earn you a man’s name among the Jan’Tep. The first is to demonstrate the strength to defend your family. The second is to prove you can perform the high magic that defines our people. The third is simply to reach the age of sixteen. I was a few weeks shy of my birthday when I learned that I wouldn’t be doing any of those things.

Magic is a con game.

Kellen is moments away from facing his first mage’s duel and the start of four trials that will make him a spellcaster. There’s just one problem: his magic is gone. As his sixteenth birthday approaches, Kellen falls back on his cunning in a bid to avoid total disgrace. But when a daring stranger arrives in town, she challenges Kellen to take a different path. Ferius Parfax is one of the mysterious Argosi – a traveller who lives by her wits and the three decks of cards she carries. She’s difficult and unpredictable, but she may be Kellen’s only hope…

Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads



The Hobbit

by J.R.R. Tolkien

Fantasy | 306 Pages | Published by HarperCollins in 1995


Bilbo never forgot the way they slithered and slipped in the dusk down the steep zig-zag path into the secret valley of Rivendell. The air grew warmer as they got lower, and the smell of the pine-trees made him drowsy, so that every now and again he nodded and nearly fell off, or bumped his nose on the pony’s neck.

~ Chapter III: A Short Rest | Page 47 | The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien


| Synopsis |

The Hobbit is a tale of high adventure, undertaken by a company of dwarves in search of dragon-guarded gold. A reluctant partner in this perilous quest is Bilbo Baggins, a comfort-loving unambitious hobbit, who surprises even himself by his resourcefulness and skill as a burglar.

Encounters with trolls, goblins, dwarves, elves and giant spiders, conversations with the dragon, Smaug, and a rather unwilling presence at the Battle of Five Armies are just some of the adventures that befall Bilbo.

Bilbo Baggins has taken his place among the ranks of the immortals of children’s fiction. Written by Professor Tolkien for his own children, The Hobbit met with instant critical acclaim when published.

Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads


| Join In |

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Please leave a comment with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your ‘teasers’ in a comment here!

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This Week by Proxy: 12 – 18 February


Welcome to This Week by Proxy. Join me as I look back on the past week to see which books I’ve read, the reviews I’ve posted and the goals I’ve completed.


| This Week by Proxy: 12 – 18 February 2018 |

This week has been quite a busy one and, though I’ve been reading throughout the week, have not actually finished any books at all! Shocking, I know. I have however, probably done the equivalent of reading The Hobbit once again as part of my There and Back Again season – so I’m going to take it as another re-read down! Hope you’ve all had a wonderful week!


| Reviews Posted |

The Hit by Nadia Dalbuono


| Posts |

Top Ten… Doomed Romances of Fantasyland

Teaser Tuesdays: February 13 – Half the World by Joe Abercrombie and The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Waiting on Wednesday: Waiting on Wednesday by Raymond E. Feist

The Friday Face-Off: Groovy Baby

Friday Firsts: Spellslinger by Sebastien de Castell

Chapter + Verse – The Hobbit: Chapter II – Roast Mutton


| February Goal Progress |

To read four books

Status: 2 of 4 Complete

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To write a review once a week

Status: 2 of 4 Complete


What have you been reading this week? Have you accomplished any goals?

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Chapter + Verse – The Hobbit: Chapter II – Roast Mutton

Welcome to There and Back Again: A Journey Through Middle Earth – an indefinite season of all things Tolkien here at Books by Proxy. Join me as I make my journey through the most defining literature of my childhood, and unravel the details behind one of the most spectacular fantasy worlds ever made.


| Introduction |

A little later in the week than expected… but welcome to the second post of Chapter and Verse! This is a brand new weekly feature where I will be re-reading and analysing every chapter of The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien as part of my indefinite There and Back Again season.

If anyone wishes to join in with the re-read, please feel free to do so – the comments are open to anything and all things Tolkien. And for those of you yet to discover The Hobbit, there will be spoilers a-plenty throughout these posts.

The Hobbit

by J.R.R. Tolkien

| Chapter II: Roast Mutton |

Bilbo wakes up to find his home empty and in a state of disarray, proving that the unexpected party the night before had not been a terrible dream as he had hoped. Feeling relieved that the dwarves had already departed, though with a brief pang of regret that he would not be sharing in their adventure, Bilbo sets to the washing up.

House in order, Bilbo sits down for a little second breakfast when Gandalf happens upon him, informing the surprised Hobbit that he has missed the note on his mantelpiece and that the dwarven company are awaiting his arrival at the Green Dragon Inn in Bywater. Ushered out of the door with not even a pocket handkerchief, nor even time to question whether he really intended going on an adventure, Bilbo hurries to meet Thorin and company.

Suddenly finding himself on a small pony, wrapped in a hood and cloak donated by Dwalin, Bilbo and his strange new companions set out on their journey. From merry beginnings, the company soon find themselves in the cold and miserable rain as they cross the Lone-lands, and Bilbo, not for the last time, wishes himself back in the comfort of his hobbit hole. The situation is only exasperated when they find that Gandalf has gone missing.

After a series of mishaps where all but a small amount of their food is lost to the river, the company, now more than a little miserable and argumentative, find their spirits lifted when they see a red light through the trees. Putting all their faith in their poor under-qualified and unsuspecting burglar, Bilbo sets out to investigate.

As he sneaks quietly towards the light, he discovers that it is a campfire occupied by three trolls. Deciding that he cannot return to the dwarves without demonstrating his usefulness, he sets to picking one of their pockets. Lifting a purse when it can talk however is a far more complicated business. Bilbo is captured by the trolls and they set to arguing over what they should do with their captive. Dropped in the ensuing fray, Bilbo scrambles out of the light of the fire only to see the trolls capture the dwarves one by one as they approach to investigate the fire and Bilbo’s whereabouts.

Still in hiding and with no idea how to save his dwarven companions, Bilbo looks on as the trolls argue over how to best cook the dwarves. They argue for so long, for unbeknownst to them Gandalf has returned and is mimicking their voices in order to delay them, that the sun rises and turns the trolls to stone.

Rescued from their misadventure, the company go in search of the suspected troll hoard where they find enough supplies to sustain them on their journey, and Gandalf, Thorin and Bilbo obtain beautiful and unusual weapons. Finally, Gandalf explains to Thorin and Bilbo that he had left in order to scout out the road ahead but upon hearing rumours of the trolls turned back, and only just in time.

| Commentary |

During the course of this re-read, I am continually surprised by the humour which rings out of every page and the beauty of each succinct description which frequently appear throughout the narrative. This is a children’s book which could easily have been written for adults, with Tolkien’s careful use of tone, humour and fairy-tale magic creating a more child-friendly read in what is actually quite a dark tale.

The opening of Chapter II gives a clear indication of Bilbo’s divided spirit; convincing himself that he doesn’t want any part in the adventure, despite his pangs of regret. Assured that he has now missed out on the ensuing escapades, he sets to cleaning his Hobbit hole; the mundanity of which perhaps makes him question going on adventure even less.

However, when Gandalf arrives to hurry Bilbo to The Green Dragon, he is taken aback that Bilbo hasn’t cleaned the mantelpiece, suggesting it is a chore he usually does daily and has been neglected due to a preoccupied mind. Furthermore, Bilbo is surprised when he finds himself “pushing his keys into Gandalf’s hands” before running “as fast as his furry feet could carry him” to catch up with the dwarven company, an indication that his spirit of adventure had not truly been quashed. 

Having left his home in such a hurry, he begins his journey without the necessities that he might have otherwise brought including a hat, money, a walking-stick, or even a pocket-handkerchief. Supplied by Gandalf with handkerchiefs and tobacco a-plenty, Dwalin loans Bilbo a dark-green hood and cloak:

“They were too large for him, and he looked rather comic. What his father Bungo would have thought of him, I daren’t think. His only comfort was he couldn’t be mistaken for a dwarf, as he had no beard.” 

This is a paragraph that I find rather significant in Bilbo’s developing relationship with the dwarves. It is clear that initially he would have been quite embarrassed to be mistaken for a dwarf; an indication of his inherent hobbit-ness and a characteristic which suggests the insular nature of his kind.

However, during Chapter I of The Fellowship of the Ring, Bilbo’s perspective of the world and its inhabitants has entirely shifted, and it is revealed that he has treasured and frequently used his old loaned hood and cloak, eventually departing from Hobbiton wearing them: 

“From a locked drawer, smelling of moth-balls, he took out an old cloak and hood. They had been locked up as if they were very precious, but they were so patched and weatherstained that their original colour could hardly be guessed: it might have been dark green. They were rather too large for him.”

The speed at which the journey progresses, when compared to Frodo’s departure from the Shire in The Fellowship of the Ring, is made very apparent throughout Chapter II.  Bilbo’s encounter with the trolls only takes him to the end of the chapter, a relatively short read, while Frodo’s encounter with the stone trolls occurs during Chapter XII of The Fellowship of the Ring. Understandably cut short for a children’s book, the length of their journey is given more indication than lengthy description throughout The Hobbit:

“At first they had passed through hobbit-lands, a wide respectable country inhabited by decent folk, with good roads, an inn or two, and now and then a dwarf or a farmer ambling by on business. Then they came to lands where people spoke strangely, and sang songs Bilbo had never heard before. Now they had gone on far into the Lone-lands, where there were no people left, no inns, and the roads grew steadily worse. Not far ahead were dreary hills, rising higher and higher with dark trees.”

The landscape encountered, or the Lone-lands, is the wilderness found to the east of Bree which features the ruined watchtower of Amun Sûl, or Weathertop, which featured in The Fellowship of the Ring and once housed one of the Palantíri. The narrative describes the hills as being crowned with, “old castles with an evil look, as if they had been built by wicked people”, which suggests not only that the company were passing perhaps near Weathertop, but also near the ruins associated with the old Kingdom of Rhudaur, which formed after the division of the Kingdom of Arnor.

This may also give some explanation to the apparent anachronism of “They have seldom even heard of the king round here”, which could in fact be a reference to the subsequently divided kingdoms of Arnor – Arthedain, Cardolan and Rhudaur.

The prologue to The Fellowship of the Ring gives some further explanation, describing how Hobbits still remembered and followed the laws set down over a thousand years before by the high king at Fornost, to the north of the Shire, which was in fact the capital of Arthedain. Furthermore, in direct relation to the ancient tradition of Fornost, it is explained that, “the Hobbits still said of wild folk and wicked things (such as trolls) that they had not even heard of the king.” 

It is in Chapter II that we begin to see something of the individual (or often paired) skills and personalities of the dwarves, and the worrisome and often bewildered character of Bilbo is developed further. Upon leaving the Shire, Bilbo soon begins yearning for home and its comforts, which leads to the revelation that Nori and Ori, like hobbits, enjoy eating plenty and often. It is also revealed that Oin and Gloin are particularly skilled at making fires; and that Balin was always their look-out man.

Bilbo’s role as the company’s burglar is also developed when he is thrown headlong into his new role; a role which is more like what we might call a thief or rogue in today’s fantasy novels. It is explained throughout the narrative that hobbits, by nature, are skilfully quiet, however Bilbo puts himself and the dwarves into unnecessary danger in order to prove himself worthy of his burglar title. His encounter with a talking purse, as “Trolls’ purses are the mischief, and this was no exception”, is particularly humorous but opens the discussion of where a troll might happen across a talking purse.

The trolls are very humanoid in The Hobbit, appearing to Bilbo as “three very large persons” who speak in the common tongue and give themselves quite ordinary names. Their nature is also given some indication through the suggestion that they have a long history as the foes of dwarves – “Trolls simply detest the very sight of dwarves (uncooked)” – and that there are in fact other types of trolls inhabiting Middle Earth, including those with more than one head. They also appear quick to be reasonably dim-witted and are quick to anger – as much with each other as anyone else – calling each other “all sorts of perfectly true and applicable names in very loud voices.” 

However, there also appears to be a certain (and surprising) emotive quality to at least one of these trolls when William says of Bilbo, “Poor little blighter, let him go.” Whether this was because he was drunk and had no more room left to eat him, or whether trolls are capable of feeling on an emotional level is left unexplained.

Gandalf’s reappearance further enhances his role as more of a trickster in The Hobbit than the great wizard we see in The Lord of the Rings, throwing his voice to confuse the trolls and apparently, along with Bilbo and the dwarves, putting “a great many spells” over the hoard of buried gold which had been looted from the trolls. Interestingly, Gandalf is also unable to read the elvish runes inscribed on the swords – a wizard who, in The Fellowship of the Ring, “once knew every spell in all the tongues of Elves or Men or Orcs”.

Chapter II: Roast Mutton sets off at an exciting pace, throwing the company directly into the action and setting the scene for the remainder of the novel. The interactions between both the company and with outside forces, makes for a funny, endearing and somewhat tense chapter that sets the rhythm of their flight from danger to safety over the course of the novel.

What were your impressions of Chapter II: Roast Mutton? Please leave a comment below!

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Teaser Tuesdays: February 13


Welcome to Teaser Tuesdays – a weekly feature hosted by The Purple Booker. Expect a new teaser every week!


| Teaser Tuesdays: February 13 |

Half the World

Book Two of the Shattered Sea

by Joe Abercrombie

Fantasy | 484 Pages | Published by Harper Voyager in 2015


Thick neck darted towards her and she blocked his sword with hers, steel clashing, chopped at him and struck splinters from his shield, stepped away, trying to give herself room to think of something, slipped on fallen fruit in darkness and lurched against the table. A sword chopped into her leg.

~ Chapter: Rage | Page 303 | Half the World by Joe Abercrombie


| Synopsis |

Thorn Bathu was born to fight. But when she kills a boy in the training square she finds herself named a murderer.

Fate places her life in the hands of the deep-cunning Father Yarvi as he sets out to cross half the world in search of allies against the ruthless High King. Beside her is Brand, a young warrior who hates to kill. A failure in her eyes and his own, the voyage is his last chance at redemption.

But warriors can be weapons, and weapons are made for one purpose. Will Thorn always be a tool in the hands of the powerful, or can she carve her own path? Is there a place outside of legend for a woman with a blade?

Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads



The Hobbit

by J.R.R. Tolkien

Fantasy | 306 Pages | Published by HarperCollins in 1995


To the end of his days Bilbo could never remember how he found himself outside, without a hat, a walking-stick or any money, or anything that he usually took when he went out; leaving his second breakfast half-finished and quite unwashed-up, pushing his keys into Gandalf’s hands, and running as fast as his furry feet could carry him down the lane, past the great Mill, across The Water, and then on for a mile or more.

Very puffed he was, when he got to Bywater just on the stroke of eleven, and found he had come without a pocket-handkerchief!

~ Chapter II: Roast Mutton | Page 29 | The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien


| Synopsis |

The Hobbit is a tale of high adventure, undertaken by a company of dwarves in search of dragon-guarded gold. A reluctant partner in this perilous quest is Bilbo Baggins, a comfort-loving unambitious hobbit, who surprises even himself by his resourcefulness and skill as a burglar.

Encounters with trolls, goblins, dwarves, elves and giant spiders, conversations with the dragon, Smaug, and a rather unwilling presence at the Battle of Five Armies are just some of the adventures that befall Bilbo.

Bilbo Baggins has taken his place among the ranks of the immortals of children’s fiction. Written by Professor Tolkien for his own children, The Hobbit met with instant critical acclaim when published.

Amazon | The Book Depository | Goodreads


| Join In |

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Please leave a comment with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your ‘teasers’ in a comment here!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten… Doomed Romances of Fantasyland


Welcome to Top Ten Tuesday – a weekly feature from The Broke and the Bookish, now hosted by ThatArtsyReaderGirl. Expect a new top ten list every week!


| Top Ten… Doomed Romances of Fantasyland |

Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday! This week it’s a love freebie in honour of valentines day so, to get you all in the spirit, I bring to you the Top Ten… Doomed Romances of Fantasyland!
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| 1. |

Túrin Turambar + Niënor Níniel

from The Silmarillion + The Children of Húrin

by J.R.R. Tolkien

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Without giving away any spoilers to one of Tolkien’s many great tragedies, there is one glaringly obvious reason these two star crossed lovers should never have got their heavenly bodies entangled. Amnesia can be a bitch.heart

| 2. |

Beren + Lúthien

from The Silmarillion + Beren and Lúthien

by J.R.R. Tolkien

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While this may be the only ‘happy ending’ The Silmarillion has to offer, the tale of Beren and Lúthien, which sees a man fall in love with an elvish woman, takes pleasing the in-laws to a whole new level. With more shapeshifting, limb-lopping and blood-letting than you can shake a silmaril at, its a good job this elf maiden had a beautiful voice.

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| 3. |

Aredhel + Eöl 

from The Silmarillion

by J.R.R. Tolkien

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When your spouse traps you in a forest and stops you from seeing any of your friends or family you know life has taken a turn for the worse. But hey, at least you didn’t try and escape with your small child and get fatally wounded in the process… Though on the grand scale of things death is probably the least of your worries.
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| 4. |

Harry Dresden and Susan Rodriguez

from The Dresden Files

by Jim Butcher

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If Harry Dresden and Susan Rodriguez can teach us anything with their dramatically flawed relationship it’s that being honest with your love interest is probably the best course of action. Harry and Susan however did not take this advice which lead to an escalating series of lies, dangerous encounters and eventual vampirism… things couldn’t get any worse, could they?
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| 5. |

Albus Dumbledore + Gellert Grindelwald

from Harry Potter

by J.K. Rowling
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Albus Dumbledore’s fancy for dark wizards and muggle suppression in his youth was bound to end in disaster from the start. After a chain of events instigated by his lover all but destroys his family, his interpersonal relationships took a sudden turn for the worse. But hey, love excluded, he didn’t do too badly afterwards.
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| 6. |

Severus Snape + Lily Potter

from Harry Potter

by J.K. Rowling

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The spurned love of Severus Snape by Lily Potter, which was escalated by her not-at-all-spurned love for infamous bully James Potter, lead to his eventual joining of He Who Should Not Be Named, her untimely death, and a somewhat short lifetime of secretive babysitting. 
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| 7. |

Cersei + Jaime Lannister

from A Song of Ice and Fire

by George R. R. Martin

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This one really doesn’t need any description, explanation or sorry conclusions. Suffice to say that having an incestuous affair with your twin is probably not the best idea you’ve ever had.

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| 8. |

Petyr “Littlefinger” Baelish + The Tully Sisters

from A Song of Ice and Fire

by George R.R. Martin
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If love makes you go crazy then Petry “Littlefinger” Baelish may be the perfect example. Spurned by his childhood sweetheart, Littlefinger’s unrequited love caused him to instigate a civil war just to get her back. After this plan fails abysmally he settles for the runner-up, which leads to a series of deaths, murders and general mayhem thereafter. 
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| 9. |

Lyra Belacqua + Will Parry

from His Dark Materials

by Philip Pullman

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After spending almost an entire two books together, Lyra and Will’s blossoming relationship is cut woefully short when neither of them is capable of living in the others world. I guess some things just aren’t meant to be.

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| 10. |

Lord Asriel + Marisa Coulter

from His Dark Materials

by Philip Pullmanheart

After a steamy affair results in the birth of a certain compass wielding little girl, a sequence of murder, abandonment and child cruelty ensues. But it wasn’t all so bad; their tragic end, for once, made all the difference. 
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What are your favourite doomed literary romances? If you would like to join in with Top Ten Tuesday, head on over to The Broke and the Bookish and sign up!

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This Week by Proxy: 01 – 11 February


This Week by ProxyWelcome to This Week by Proxy. Join me as I look back on the past week to see which books I’ve read, the reviews I’ve posted and the goals I’ve completed.


| This Week by Proxy: 01 – 11 February 2018 |

The beginning of February saw my return to blogging – something I have missed for a long time. While I’m still finding my feet once again, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed creating new posts, reading books, both new and old, and catching up on everything I’ve missed in this wonderful blogging community. A huge thank you to all my blogging friends for welcoming me back, continuing to reading this blog and for continuing with my neglected memes in my absence!


| Books Read |

| 1. |

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

With the start of my There and Back Again season, I decided to give The Hobbit an initial re-read before proceeding chapter by chapter every week for my Chapter + Verse posts. Suffice to say my love for this book only grows with age, and I cannot wait to explore the ins and outs of Middle Earth a little further.

| 2. |

Half the World by Joe Abercrombie

The second book in Abercrombie’s Shattered Sea trilogy lived up to all expectations as an action-packed, exciting read full of the trademark sword swinging, blood letting, comic violence and sticky ends. I cannot wait to continue the series with Half a War in the near future. 


| Reviews Posted |

The Emperor’s Blades by Brian Staveley


| Posts |

The Month Ahead: February 2018

Tough Travelling: Shapeshifters

The Friday Face-Off: Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds

The Friday Face-Off: My, What Big Teeth You Have

Friday Firsts: The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu

Friday Firsts: Half the World by Joe Abercrombie

Chapter + Verse – The Hobbit: Chapter I – An Unexpected Party

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten… Books I Still Haven’t Read

Teaser Tuesdays: February 06 – The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu + The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Waiting on Wednesday: Black Mirror – Volume 1 edited by Charlie Brooker


| February Goal Progress |

To read four books

Status: 2 of 4 Complete

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To write a review once a week

Status: 1 of 4 Complete


What have you been reading this week? Have you accomplished any goals?

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