Reading progress update: I've read 29%.

The Fellowship of the Ring - J.R.R. Tolkien

So I figured I'd stop stealth-updating and give my thoughts and opinions thus far.

 

1) I love Robert Inglis! He's an amazing narrator, and I love how he sings little ditties for the songs! It makes the poetry (my least favorite part of the book) so nice and fun!

 

2) There are a lot more differences from the movie than I realized! And - gasp! - some of the movies changes actually improve the story!

 

For instance, there are YEARS between Bilbo's party and Frodo's leaving the Shire. Even in the book, it seems odd. Also, Frodo waits MONTHS to leave Bag End, and even when he does leave, he is just leaving for the new home in Creek Hollow. His entire plan was to wait for Gandalf - until Gandalf doesn't appear.

 

Another one: Merry isn't with Frodo, Sam, and Pippin when they first meet the Black Rider. In fact, the party meets up with the Black Rider twice!

 

3) Most of the "action scenes" are told in dialogue format. Gandalf exposits Golloum's history. Farmer Maggot tells about the Black Riders. Sam tells about the Old Gaffer meeting the Black Riders. Then Merry talks about the Black Riders. Then Frodo speaks with Gildor of the Wood Elves. The stories are good, but I also would rather read about what is happening, not one person talking to another person about this event.

 

4) They eat - a LOT! I know, hobbits like their food, but really all the eating and talking just takes away from the urgency. Actually, there is like zero urgency because A) there is no rush to leave the Shire, Frodo is walking at a leisurely pace and B) there is no feeling of dread, even when the Black Riders arrive.

 

5) Sam is an idiot. He is just such a goofball in this book, I'm really glad the movie made him more serious. Yes, he still does silly things, but at least it isn't as insulting.

 

So those are my thoughts! I am enjoying this heartily, but it's been immensely insightful to see the tweaks the movies have made.