I know, I know, I've written about The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien so many times. I can't help myself, I have a problem.
I reread the book each year and it feels like each time I do, I notice things that I've never noticed before. So when Weeks 32 to 34 in last year's reading challenge were to read a trilogy, I knew immediately what I was going to read.
I also have this little quirk where each time I read the book, I try and read a different edition. This time around I most read my three volume paperback edition (the first one that I ever successfully read all the way through), though when I was on the go I read my Kindle version too in order to save carrying the books around.
Do I really need to go over the summary of this book again?
Magic Ring. Evil ruler. Short people with hairy feet. Black riders. Fellowship. Quest. Gandalf dead. Gandalf alive. Gollum. Battles. Mount Doom. Ring destroyed. Hobbits head to Grey Havens.
That about covers it.
My notes on this reread show that I really enjoyed my reread. I got through all three volumes pretty quickly, though I noted that I normally find the second half of The Two Towers drags (though on this read I got through that one quicker than anticipated). I'm not sure how much of this was because I was reading to a deadline because I whizzed through The Return of the King as well; normally it takes me a while to get through the appendices but this time only took two days.
Part of my speed of reading was the fact that I opened the book in the Kindle app on my phone so I could easily read it on my breaks and when I was out and about. I wish that I could get all books I own on Kindle so I have a back up for when book-books aren't convenient.
Each time I read The Lord of the Rings I find myself loving or feeling more drawn to different characters. I always love the Hobbits in Fellowship; prefer Merry, Pippin, Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas in Two Towers; and (not so) secretly ship Aragorn and Eowyn in Return of the King. This go around I fell in love with Aragorn right from the start and even really liked Tom Bombadil more too; now he's a character I disliked ten years ago so he seems to be someone you like more as you get older.
This time I felt as though The Return of the King has become my favourite book, though I'm sure this will change on future rereads. I loved the way that everything is wrapped up but the story still goes on, we just don't get to witness it.
I really appreciate the appendices now. I like to find out the little 'behind the scenes' bits of information. It's especially sad to see what happened in Dale and Erebor during the War of the Ring now, considering we got to see them and the people who live there in The Hobbit movies.
Often I read this edition of The Lord of the Rings with breathing space in between each book, but this time around I really enjoyed reading them back to back.
Expect to see my thoughts on this one again in the future.