Hello everyone! Welcome back to cover to cover! Today I have the last installment on the Lord of the Rings series. I have to say that I am so sad that I finished it. I loved reading this book, and I loved the characters. Maybe I will feel more fulfilled if I watch the movies again? Anyways, let's get into it!
Return of the King is the last part of LOTR (but as we all know from a previous blog post, LOTR is actually one book. It was broken down into three main parts to cut on the cost of the book as well as help with a paper shortage). The cover you see above is from the box set I have which I cannot rave about enough.
In this segment, it is the last leg of the journey for Frodo and Sam. They are in Mordor and just have a little ways to go to Mount Doom. Of course, Gollum is still roaming around the barren landscapes after them. And while the two hobbits are making their way, the kingdoms on the west are 1. defending Gondor and defeating a huge ass army of Orcs and 2. marching right up to the black gate. Anything they can do to keep the eye of Sauron off of Frodo.
There is a lot of action in this book. So many battles, so many trials and tribulations, and so many acts of courage. For one, Sam goes head-to-head with some Orcs while trying to rescue Frodo; he physically carries Frodo up part of the mountain, and for awhile he bears the ring while Frodo is "pre-occupied." Aragorn goes to retrieve an army of the dead and goes where no one has come back alive from. Merry charges head first into the battle of Gondor with the King's daughter. Like I said....so much happens in this book.
Honestly, I really love the character Sam. He really grows and becomes more confident in himself. He is blindly loyal to Frodo and will do whatever it takes to make sure the ring is destroyed.
At the end Merry and Pippin are reunited and as they go back to the shire, they are still on a high from their adventure. They tell stories and sing songs and do whatever it takes to protect the Shire. They are ready to charge into another battle.
This book is about 385 pages, and it does alternate point of views again. But Tolkien does it in a way that keeps things from confusing the reader. The first half is the battle of Gondor and marching up to the black gate then we switch over to Frodo and Sam. That's how it is in the first two books as well. Frodo and Sam's journey always comes in the second half.
And the ending is so bittersweet. It feels so sad, but you know that it's not. The quest is done, everyone is back or where they should be for the most part.
I do have to say, the ending is way different than what was showed in the movies. 1. Frodo and Sam are in Mordor travelling to Mount Doom for days. I totally get it's a movie and why show all of that. But I thought that Mount Doom was a hop. skip, and a jump from wherever Sam rescues Frodo from. It's not. 2. Saruman attacks the shire after he escapes from Isengard. I think they killed him off in the movies as Isengard was being overrun, but he actually escapes Treebeard (the walking tree people) and gets revenge on the Shire. 3. The Shire is not the same peaceful place when the hobbits get back (because of Saruman). But in the movies it's portrayed exactly as how they left it. There's nothing wrong with these differences. It was just a surprise to see that oh, things weren't actually like that.
I actually really like the movies. I don't know if that's an unpopular opinion or not, but I think they did a great job of portraying the world and the characters. But I also liked the movies way before deciding to read the book, and even after reading, I can still say that I like them.
Overall, I really loved LOTR. This was my big reading goal for the year. If anything, no matter how long it was going to take, I was going to read and finish it. Well it's the end of January as I write this and I'm already done. Really overestimated how long it was going to take. I would definitely rate this a 4/5 stars- for the whole book, all parts included.
I highly recommend reading it! If you don't want a big commitment because the book is over 1,000 total, I recommend at least The Hobbit. It's just such an amazing world and it's hard to believe just one person can create all of this, the kingdoms, the characters, the language, etc. I really think LOTR deserves so much more hype than it gets (I mostly blame Harry Potter/Game of Thrones for that).
Alright, folks! That's all I have for this week. Come back next Tuesday for another post! As always thank you for reading :)