Today’s is June 23. That means it’s time for Putting the Blog in Balrog, a group read of The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy. This is the brainchild of one of my most awesomest Tweeps/blog-friends, SJ over at Snobbery. If you are interested in joining us, here is the reading schedule. Then, read on below.
First, whether you will read these books for the first time or the hundredth time, do yourself a Gandalf-sized favor by checking out the easy-to-read, entertaining and very helpful summaries SJ wrote for the various chapters of The Silmarillion. (The Sillmarillion is the story of the birth of world, the gods, the creatures and humans we later meet as wizards, elves, orcs, hobbits, dragons, dwarves, spiders and other such magical, mystical, creeptastic things.)
SJ’s summary divides into five parts:
Part I: Ainulindalë (Music of the Ainur) and Valaquenta (Tale of the Valar)
Part II: Quenta Silmarillion (the Tale of the Silmarils)
Part III: Quenta Silmarillion (the Tale of the Silmarils) (continued)
Part IV: Quenta Silmarillion (the Tale of the Silmarils) (continued) (Now do you see why you should read the summary?!?)
Part V: Akallabêth (The Downfallen) and Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age
Also, if you are (or become or would like to become) a LotR super-fan, check out David Jón Fuller’s blog over at As You Were. He will hook you up with the “Total-nerd Tolkien reading plan.” This is a road map for the order in which you should read Tolkien’s published works on Middle-earth, in addition to The Hobbit and the LotR trilogy.
If you’d like to join us, just read per the schedule, then visit Snobbery at the end of each reading section to peruse SJ’s posts and the participants’ comments on the group read. If you have your own blog, you can write your thoughts and point us toward them. And, don’t worry if you can’t keep perfectly to the schedule — SJ’s posts will be there when you’re ready, and you can still leave a comment.
Personally, I am ridiculously excited about this. I haven’t The Hobbit or the LotR trilogy since I was very young, and I’ve forgotten more from the stories than I remember. I started reading The Hobbit early (because I cheat), and already I realize that it’s like reading a whole new book. Now, I get the added benefit of sharing it with others who love it, too.
So, come meet us in the Shire. Don’t forget your pocket kerchiefs or your pipe!