I decided to reread the Hobbit. I had dismissed it years ago as too magical. It was a great read, much lighter than The Lord of the Ring. It’s a much more hopeful book that the massive books that followed.
The Lord of the Rings is an apocalyptic work; the end of a great evil, but the end of the Elves and the demise of much of an ancient culture. The ending is tainted with grief.
I hope that the movies made of The Hobbit will be better than The Lord of the Ring. Peter Jackson deserves all the credit that he has earned, but also deserves roasting over a slow fire. So much was edited out to make the movies – or outright changes – that I wish he had stuck with monster flicks.