Welcome to the The Hobbit read-a-long! We’re reading this book through November and December. You can see the reading schedule and guidelines on the Starting Post Page.
Week Six: Read to Chapter XIII
“You are familiar with Thorin’s style on important occasions…” (212), oh Tolkien, I love how you treat us with such familiarity. Of course we know Thorin’s style – giggle, giggle. (I honestly can’t remember a thing about Thorin’s style – are we supposed to remember it? Do we care or do we just love the fact that Tolkien acts like we know each other so well?!)
Only a few pages after the above quote, it’s mentioned that Bilbo is a very different hobbit than he was when they left – that he doesn’t even carry a pocket-handkercheif and hasn’t for some time now. We all know that Bilbo is a different hobbit, certainly more flexible, brave, and self-reliant. What, though, do we think is the significance of the tidbit about the pocket-handkercheif. There are so many explanations running through my head, and I’m curious what you all think is the significance of telling us this specific thing.
We also witness Blibo beginning to wish he was home again – and I’ve realized that Tolkien has done a painstaking job to create a creature who is so incredibly human in some of our most base ways. All of the characters have human characteristics, of course, but Bilbo’s are very specific to children (who not only need routine, whether or not they like it, but also have strong bonds to their homes). Of course, adults can be exactly the same way (we really are just bigger children, aren’t we), but I do like that he seemed to take into account the psychology of children when writing Bilbo. (Hint: this is one of my theories about the pocket-handkercheif… a sort of “blankie” if you will.) What do you think of my theory?
The scene where Bilbo is speaking to Smaug is insightful. It’s almost as though Bilbo is realizing who he is now and saying it aloud. Though he calls them riddles (about himself) he could just as easily call them affirmations! He most certainly would not have been able to say even half of those things about him had he decided to stay home in his hobbit hole.
Is anyone nervous about the dragon taking revenge on the wrong people? I’m feeling anxious about the upcoming reading! And lastly, I have to say, I think Tolkien did not like ponies very much. I literally couldn’t help but exclaiming (aloud), “Not again! The ponies!”
Who’s Reading Along:
** Please don’t forget to come to this blog each Friday and share your thoughts in the comments section of the weekly The Hobbit discussion (see below for more information).**
Meg @ A Bookish Affair
Jenny Colvin (@readingenvy)
kai charles (@YogiKai)
- If you are participating and I don’t have you on this list, please let me know in the comments section. I did not include people who said ‘maybe’ so if you have changed your mind and are definitely reading along with us, let me know so I can add you. Also, if you are not going to be able to join us anymore please let me know and I will take you off the list.
- Comments from the previous week’s reading will be closing Thursday afternoon (before the next discussion takes place on Friday). If you would like to be part of the discussion, please remember to comment before then.
- Each week, on Friday, share your thoughts about the previous week’s reading. If you are stuck on what to comment about, you can respond to my post or others’ comments. Regardless, you MUST check in each week (two weeks without a response and you will be taken off of the list — see below for details on why). You may have only one “off week” (which may not be the last week of reading for obvious reasons) and still be kept on the list, but you must let me know in the comment section by saying something like, “I’m catching up,” or “I’m still reading.” ***for all week’s discussions please refrain from posting ahead, even if you have read ahead, as to not spoil the book for others***
- If you are a blogger you may post a link to your blog if you are posting about each of the each week’s reading. If I, or other readers, have extra time we will gladly try to visit your blog; however, you must make sure to share your thoughts here on this blog, and be part of the main conversation or your comment will not be counted.
- If you go for two weeks without commenting in my weekly update comments section, I will assume you are no longer participating and will take you off of the list (*NEW GUIDELINE*, in order to get back onthe list, you need to a.) Have missed no more than two weeks of discussion, b.) Let me know you would like to be on the list again, and c.) consistently be part of the discussion for the next two weeks after requesting to be put back on the list.). This is in no way to be discouraging, but helps to keep the read-a-long organized (and helps me remember who’s completed what read-a-long…there (ahem) might be something fun for different levels of participants at the end of the year! Thanks!