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The Lord of the Rings trilogy (Your Opinions?)(Books)

Cutty Flam

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I picked up reading last June, and am really glad I did. I forgot how relaxing, fun, and overall just incredible it is to spend time reading. It expands your mind, your vocabulary, helps me with my temper and give me another outlet to spend my time creatively. I can say a lot about the benefits of reading for me so far, but I'll just say that it's a great hobby and is time very much well spent. I plan to keep this hobby

I started off reading the Harry Potter series, and I adore it. Love it. I really want to start reading all about it on Reddit now that I've finished all the books. And watch the movies as well

But now, I think I am almost decided. I want to try the Lord of the Rings books. I've seen the films, and they are very well made. The first one is a classic. And the rest I can't remember too much, except a huge war takes place in Twin Towers, and The Return of the King was a hell of movie. Somehow, I can imagine the books being even better. Maybe even unbelievably better, despite how well crafted and imagined the movies are. Am I right in predicting that? Really excited to try them out, I just don't know when I'm going to start. Because I know if I read these, I might get stuck in the universe and want to read all the books. And I think there's a lot right? The Hobbit and then there's like others I think one was called Sauron's ______ something but anyway, is it all worth it? Should I read the Lord of the Rings trilogy or is there something even better out there?

Might even consider Stephen King books in its place if I'm not totally up for LotR just yet. Like I said, I want to watch the Harry Potter movies and absorb more of that universe as well

Would love to hear any thoughts on any of this,
 

DKehoe

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I’d say go for it. If you’ve got an interest in fantasy then it’s worth checking out LoTR since it’s such a touchstone for the genre. Be aware that the books go at a slower pace than the movies so it might be a bit of a change. You also might want to consider reading The Hobbit first.

As for Stephen King, I cant think of a better time to read The Stand than right now since it’s about a pandemic.
 

Cutty Flam

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I’d say go for it. If you’ve got an interest in fantasy then it’s worth checking out LoTR since it’s such a touchstone for the genre. Be aware that the books go at a slower pace than the movies so it might be a bit of a change. You also might want to consider reading The Hobbit first.

As for Stephen King, I cant think of a better time to read The Stand than right now since it’s about a pandemic.
Thanks for the input brother!

Would that be a good idea, reading The Hobbit first? Did Tolkien write The Hobbit after he wrote the series? Or was that his very first book? And thanks for the heads up with the pace. I was actually very much anticipating that, since I imagine such a loved trilogy and series only being three books, would have incredible, incredible description, imagery, and overall just impeccable writing through and through. I’m betting it’s even better than Harry Potter, as close as the HP books are to me

I’ll look into The Stand. What are your thoughts on it overall? Is it extremely horrifying and gruesome? I used to love Goosebumps books as a kid, so I think Stephen King is right up my alley. I just don’t want to pick a mediocre one for my first go, stepping into his world, experiencing his work. I want to pick the right one for me if that makes sense. I’ll know when I know basically, but if you speak highly of The Stand then I’ll think on it
 
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Onikaan

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I can't recommend the Lord of the Rings highly enough. There's a certain chapter that's my favourite piece of fantasy literature... Ever. Warning: you're likely going to get wrapped up in the universe and spend hours on the wiki in your great thirst for more.
 

DKehoe

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Thanks for the input brother!

Would that be a good idea, reading The Hobbit first? Did Tolkien write The Hobbit after he wrote the series? Or was that his very first book? And thanks for the heads up with the pace. I was actually very much anticipating that, since I imagine such a loved trilogy and series only being three books, would have incredible, incredible description, imagery, and overall just impeccable writing through and through. I’m betting it’s even better than Harry Potter, as close as the HP books are to me

I’ll look into The Stand. What are your thoughts on it overall? Is it extremely horrifying and gruesome? I used to love Goosebumps books as a kid, so I think Stephen King is right up my alley. I just don’t want to pick a mediocre one for my first go, stepping into his world, experiencing his work. I want to pick the right one for me if that makes sense. I’ll know when I know basically, but if you speak highly of The Stand then I’ll think on it

Yeh he wrote The Hobbit first and then LOTR and the rest of the mythology followed later. It’s also a shorter book with a quicker pace so maybe a way to jump in and see if Tolkien is for you. It’s a bit more of a kids book, but still very much enjoyable.

I really liked The Stand. It was the first King book I read. There’s horror elements for sure but it’s not as horrifying and gruesome as I expected to be honest. Basically it’s about a flu pandemic that wipes out almost all of the population and then follows the survivors as they try to get by. As with many of King’s books there are also supernatural forces at play.
 

Onikaan

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The hobbit is worth the read. It'll set you up nicely for LOTR. As DKehoe said, it's apparent it was written by Tolkien for his children, but still a great story. Tolkien actually went back and altered the Hobbit in later publishings to line up better with the Rings trilogy.

I mean you COULD be an absolute mad man and start with the Silmarilion.
 
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Read The Hobbit first. Book one of LoR is the best and easily digested of the three, in my opinion. By book three it became a bit of a slog for me. Took me three attempts to finish it as a kid.

For Stephen King I'd recommend Salem's Lot.
 

SirTerry-T

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Read Tolkien's stuff first, try some King out and then read The Dark Tower, it's King's own epic fantasy ...just ignore any bad taste the shockingly bad film version may have left in your mouth. Even if you don't end up reading it, try and track down the audio books. It's a great story and Roland is a fantastic character.

The Michael Moorcock "Eternal Champion" saga is great too, The Elric lead, "Stormbringer" is probably my favourite fantasy story out of all I have read.
 

iorek21

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LOTR is a very well written trilogy, but it can be a little tricky at the beginning, depending on how experienced you are as a reader.
Wile Harry Potter goes for a more accessible language, LOTR doesn’t hold back and can be very... detailed in some parts, but it definitely picks up pace after a while.

As for other Fantasy books, I’d recommend Neil Gaiman’s American Gods, it’s a hell of a novel.
 
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Ornlu

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I love Tolkien; every time you think you know the whole story, you realize that there are vast depths to the story that you didn't know about. The world building is absolutely the best that has ever been written, bar none.

With LOTR in particular, it is a great read. One of the criticisms I agree with, however, is that Tolkien chooses to focus 90% of his works on description of nature and the environment. It will make for a jarring shock, if someone who loved the action in the movies were to seek out the books for the first time. For example, the movies might show minutes-long travel scenes peppered with character building, then have an epic hour long battle. The books will tend to the reverse, focusing on the journey the characters take. The actual fighting takes place largely "off-screen", and is left to the imagination of the reader.

For me in particular, I both love and am irritated by that. I love that in doing so, the books don't get bogged down in blow-by-blow combat, but I also wish that some of the most titanic, world shaping battles weren't at times condensed to the point that the scale is lost (the actual fighting in Helm's Deep is something like 5 pages, total).
 
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BigBooper

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The LOTR books are fantastic and they are better than the movie because you can have more detail in books, but they are a slightly slower burn. I've read all three and listened to the audiobook. I never felt like reading any others except The Hobbit.

The Hobbit book is so much better than the movies, but for me, I didn't love it as much as the LOTR trilogy.
 

GAMETA

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I read in my teenage years, the books are great except for some really boring passages. I don't think I'd read it again after 30, though... fantasy becomes kind of a waste of time.
 
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teezzy

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Reading is dope. Cutty Flam Cutty Flam , you gave me some awesome workout advice previously, and honestly, reading books really does feel like exercising your mind. Someone who lifts weights and reads books is instantly a cool person. I think it's hard not to be if you hold both those hobbies.

With that said, as far as LotR is concerned, start with The Hobbit. If you like that then check out Fellowship, etc.

If you're looking for Stephen King and are into the whole fantasy thing, The Dark Tower certainly lives up to that. Check out The Gunslinger. Starts out as more of a western fantasy sorta thing, but as the books go on... well, I don't want to spoil anything.

But yeah, The Hobbit and The Gunslinger are both sick as fuck.
 
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GreyHorace

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I say this as a big fan of Tolkien and his work.

The man was one of the most imaginative writers in all of literature. His ability to craft a secondary world plus create a whole mileu of languages for said world was unmatched. I dare say no one will match his achievement ever again.

That said, he could also be the most boring writer imaginable. I love the books but sometimes it just takes forever for the plot to move forward, especially in the first part. Tolkien didn't need to flood his text with page upon page of descriptions when a paragraph or two might have sufficed.

But can I say that Tolkien was underrated as a horror writer? Some passages in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings were very chilling because of how Tolkien set the mood. It's one aspect where his overtly descriptive text really worked.
 

billyxci

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i'm in the process of reading the books (not for the first time). i'm just about over half way through Two Towers.

the movies are brilliant. maybe one of the best book to movie adaptions of all time. of course i just mean LOTR and not The Hobbit. sure there is a lot of stuff left out but they movies really do the books justice. i would highly recommend the books. like i said there are some things in the books that movies don't have but mostly what i feel the books do are just flesh some scenes out and give you a better idea of how the characters are feeling. also Tolkien is really descriptive of the world of Middle Earth so just take your time and you'll get lost in it but i guess some people could find this annoying.

start with The Hobbit of course then LOTR trilogy (it's actually meant to be 1 huge book). if afterwards you want more then there is plenty more to read. The Silmarillion/unfinished tales, history of middle earth volumes, children of hurin, beren + luthien, the fall of gondolin etc. the world/lore Tolkien created is mindblowing and ultimately what happens in The Hobbit/LOTR ends up feeling like just a chapter in a book.
 
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IDKFA

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The film's are amazing. PJ did a fantastic job adapting LOTR to film. However, like in all cases of films adapted from books, the books are superior.
 
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#Phonepunk#

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I love those books. Read them as a teenager and just fell in love with the world. I really fell in love with fantasy at that point.

Right now I’m making my way through the Silmarilion, it’s a really nice companion piece, highly recommended if you like LOTR
 

Bolivar687

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I definitely recommend reading the Hobbit first. The first few times I read LotR it felt so slow and sometimes contrived. The Hobbit has a much quicker pace, it's easily digestible and it primes you for the epic he follows up on with LotR. I would actually say reading the Hobbit is a good primer for more complex reading overall.

Going into LotR after reading the Hobbit and some of the newer fantasy inspired by Tolkien is just an insane feast for your mind. If you start reading it slowly in your own voice, your mind kind of syncs up with Tolkien's and then the pages start flying by. A lot of Tolkien's successors tried to make LotR but darker or morally ambiguous, but when I go back to some of those scenes, I feel like Tolkien has them all beat on instilling a sense of dread in the reader. It's also essentially about a moral conflict, with the "good guys" failing on that front time and again.

The one fantasy series I must insist on recommending is the Second Apocalypse by R. Scott Bakker. It shamelessly borrows a lot from LotR, Dune, and the historical First Crusade as Bakker read it by Harold Lamb, but still somehow creates something mind-blowingly original. It's some of the most epic and best written stuff I've ever read. Just be advised, it's also some of the darkest and most fucked up content anyone has probably ever had in the genre.
 
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Dazrael

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The one thing that I do find jarring with film adaptations from books is that their imagery replaces the ones that I’ve formed in my imagination. I read LOTR long before watching the films and I had a good idea of how everything looked in my head. Then after watching the films that imagery takes over and replaces your head canon. It’s not a terrible thing but I definitely lost some great imagery in my mind.

LOTR is definitely worth a read though, a fantastic story with a satisfactory payoff. Reading The Hobbit first is a good idea though. Contrary to what others have said I didn’t find Tolkien’s writing style that difficult to follow. If you want difficult then try The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper. That book will fry your brain.
 
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GnomeChimpsky

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I picked up reading last June, and am really glad I did. I forgot how relaxing, fun, and overall just incredible it is to spend time reading. It expands your mind, your vocabulary, helps me with my temper and give me another outlet to spend my time creatively. I can say a lot about the benefits of reading for me so far, but I'll just say that it's a great hobby and is time very much well spent. I plan to keep this hobby

Thumbs up for this. I took the advice of Gavin McInnes (of all people) to force myself to read 10 pages a day and I'm glad I did.

Tips for people who want to start to read: get the Kindle-app, add all the books you want to ereaderiq.com, subscribe to r/ebookdeals on reddit. You'll never run out of cool stuff to read.
 
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Steve.1981

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Go for it op. There's a reason LotR is so beloved. The book is an absolute stone cold all-time classic. Dive in. You're going to have a great time.

I've read it... 8, 9 times now? It doesn't age. Great setup, deep world building, long cast of memorable characters, enjoyable both on the surface level as epic fantasy with action & set-pieces... & as in depth as you want to go with the whole history of Middle Earth's various peoples & events across 3 ages & thousands of years.

Just do it man. It simply can't go wrong.
 

CloudNull

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I went hard when I was younger and started to learn the elevish language after reading the series. Easily some of the best fantasy around. As many have said though he was from a different time which can make some parts super boring.

He also writes himself into a corner several times and his methods of handling this leave a bit to be desired. Honestly very minor critiques and worth the read alone to see how his work has set the precedent for the majority of fantasy.
 

Scotty W

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I haven’t read them because I know I would spend years stuck in that universe. There has been so much other stuff published that it scares me.

Cutty Flam Cutty Flam please consider reading Homer as well as the Aeneid. Homer arranged his material from pre-existing mythology, folktales and songs. He worked from an extended universe. Tolkein created his own extended universe. Homer is one of he greatest writers ever, he is not as difficult as people think, and he will make a lot of things in western culture and literature much clearer.
 
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Ornlu

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I went hard when I was younger and started to learn the elevish language after reading the series. Easily some of the best fantasy around. As many have said though he was from a different time which can make some parts super boring.

He also writes himself into a corner several times and his methods of handling this leave a bit to be desired. Honestly very minor critiques and worth the read alone to see how his work has set the precedent for the majority of fantasy.


Where does he do that, in your opinion?
 
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Nymphae

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Really great series, few will deny this. I bought a really nice leather set (might be fake leather I don't care) a few years ago but haven't re-read it yet, I think I might do that soon. These are smaller than normal books too which I really love, the print is sort of tiny but I prefer holding something small like that. I love how these look.



 
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KO7

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I read The Hobbit and LOTRs when I was 12 or 13 years old prior to high school and it’s still my most beloved stories and fantasy universe ever. The LOTR films were “moment in time” events for me, and I may or may not have attended midnight releases for all 3 movies. The Hobbit theatrical releases didn’t really jive with me, but I recently watched the extended versions and enjoyed them a lot.
 
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Cutty Flam

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Nymphae Nymphae thats a dope set bro. The Hobbit is such a good read, it’s really interesting how J.R.R. Tolkien is able to manipulate mood/tone so powerfully. There was this one particular moment when
Gandalf speaks to Thorin and completely commands literally 100% of everyone’s full attention. He was speaking about Thorin’s grandfather and the way he did it was unbelievably powerful storytelling on Tolkien’s part. I can definitely see where J.K. Rowling might have gotten some of her inspiration for Dumbledore from. Had to be from Gandalf. Extraordinary wizard. And I’m only a third of the way in and can say that much about him. Profound writing, definitely

I can’t wait to read The LOTR Trilogy after The Hobbit
 

Andyliini

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I first pick it up during junior high, by recommendation of class mate. I really enjoyed reading through all of them, and quickly became a fan. I have since then read The Hobbit, Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth and even Bilbo's Last Song. Today, The Lord of the Rings is one of the "big 3" of literature, as I call them. There are two other books that have greatly influenced me, and Lord of the Rings is the first one of them.
 
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Cutty Flam

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I first pick it up during junior high, by recommendation of class mate. I really enjoyed reading through all of them, and quickly became a fan. I have since then read The Hobbit, Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth and even Bilbo's Last Song. Today, The Lord of the Rings is one of the "big 3" of literature, as I call them. There are two other books that have greatly influenced me, and Lord of the Rings is the first one of them.
What are the other two?
 

NeoIkaruGAF

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Fellowship is just as great as a book as it is as a movie. The telling of Gandalf’s research about the One Ring is fantastic, and everything up to the parting of the Fellowship flows much better than anything that happens next. Moria is the pinnacle of the book, and probably of the whole story. Towers and Return are, as already said, slower books and I don’t think I ever read the whole story in English (I did read it whole in Italian in my teenage years).
Nothing about LOTR is overrated, IMO. It’s as good as they’ve been saying for 60 years now.
 
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DadEggs

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You cant go wrong reading lotr tbh.

tolkein is a master linguist and its the pinnacle of fantasy as a whole


Very light on magic though which always irritates me. Thankfully The Wheel of Time is full of it.


Edit: fuck - now i need to reread this series
 
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Hulk_Smash

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I picked up reading last June, and am really glad I did. I forgot how relaxing, fun, and overall just incredible it is to spend time reading. It expands your mind, your vocabulary, helps me with my temper and give me another outlet to spend my time creatively. I can say a lot about the benefits of reading for me so far, but I'll just say that it's a great hobby and is time very much well spent. I plan to keep this hobby

I started off reading the Harry Potter series, and I adore it. Love it. I really want to start reading all about it on Reddit now that I've finished all the books. And watch the movies as well

But now, I think I am almost decided. I want to try the Lord of the Rings books. I've seen the films, and they are very well made. The first one is a classic. And the rest I can't remember too much, except a huge war takes place in Twin Towers, and The Return of the King was a hell of movie. Somehow, I can imagine the books being even better. Maybe even unbelievably better, despite how well crafted and imagined the movies are. Am I right in predicting that? Really excited to try them out, I just don't know when I'm going to start. Because I know if I read these, I might get stuck in the universe and want to read all the books. And I think there's a lot right? The Hobbit and then there's like others I think one was called Sauron's ______ something but anyway, is it all worth it? Should I read the Lord of the Rings trilogy or is there something even better out there?

Might even consider Stephen King books in its place if I'm not totally up for LotR just yet. Like I said, I want to watch the Harry Potter movies and absorb more of that universe as well

Would love to hear any thoughts on any of this,

The Lord of the Rings books are not as action packed as the movies make it seem. Helms Deep is a great example of this. Not nearly as much time is given to the actual battle in the book as it is in the movie.

Just keep that in mind. Also, the first book has a ton of poetry in it. Some of it tells the lore of middle earth, some doesn’t. Even with this heads up, you’re going to go “geez there’s a lot of poetry.”

My suggestion with Stephen King is don’t do the dark tower series yet. That’s a bit of a deep dive. Start off with The Stand. Not only is it a great book (my all time favorite) but it gives you a taste of non-horror King as well. If you like it, you’ll probably like the dark tower series.
 
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H4ze

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Can't say anything else but I absolutey love The Lord of the Rings, no matter what.
I enjoy the movies a lot (first one is my favorite), I read the books too, they are of course even more detailed and a bit more awesome since they
had to cut a lot out of the movies obv.

The really funny thing right now is, that I just tought yesterday like damn, I should watch the movies again, it's almost one year since I saw them last, absolute heresy.
 

Ornlu

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You cant go wrong reading lotr tbh.

tolkein is a master linguist and its the pinnacle of fantasy as a whole


Very light on magic though which always irritates me. Thankfully The Wheel of Time is full of it.


Edit: fuck - now i need to reread this series

TBH that's probably why the series is so good. Magic retains its mystique and power when used sparingly and without number-crunching or power levels.
 
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Kev Kev

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Edit: fuck - now i need to reread this series
lol i know right!?

i went through it once about 10 years ago. but i dove in and read pretty much everything other than history of middle earth series. immensely enjoyed myself in this universe. and i also believe im getting close to going through it all again. but i know tis going to consume me so im scared :messenger_tears_of_joy:
 

Cutty Flam

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Second one is The Dark Tower by Stephen King, the third one is The Egyptian by Mika Waltari.
Interesting stuff. The Dark Tower seems very popular and highly praised. I heard Stephen King is well known for the length of his books, among many other great aspects. How is his wrying style in The Dark Towers. I like the title a lot

Also love Egyptian books, books with mummies and pyramids. I remember reading a good one by R.L. Stine in his Goosebumps series when I was in 3rd grade I think. Had some protagonist named Gabe, I only remember because my friend laughed at his name during my presentation lol
 

Cutty Flam

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Can't say anything else but I absolutey love The Lord of the Rings, no matter what.
I enjoy the movies a lot (first one is my favorite), I read the books too, they are of course even more detailed and a bit more awesome since they
had to cut a lot out of the movies obv.

The really funny thing right now is, that I just tought yesterday like damn, I should watch the movies again, it's almost one year since I saw them last, absolute heresy.
The Fellowship of the Rings is what I remember the most, the rest I can only recall moments of the film. The first movie is fantastic. I watched it as a kid in theaters and it was something else. Peter Jackson must be a huge fan himself he did really well I thought. But I also haven’t read the books yet. Going to be fun comparing the books and the movies

Kind of sucks he missed with The Hobbit though, I wonder why he failed? Or at least, most fans seem to think he did a poor job...
 
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Ornlu

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The Fellowship of the Rings is what I remember the most, the rest I can only recall moments of the film. The first movie is fantastic. I watched it as a kid in theaters and it was something else. Peter Jackson must be a huge fan himself he did really well I thought. But I also haven’t read the books yet. Going to be fun comparing the books and the movies

Kind of sucks he missed with The Hobbit though, I wonder why he failed? Or at least, most fans seem to think he did a poor job...

He didn't want to make it, and got lured in with wads of cash. Agreed to make a short book a trilogy, which was a terrible idea from the start.
 
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Feb 9, 2018
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The Fellowship of the Rings is what I remember the most, the rest I can only recall moments of the film. The first movie is fantastic. I watched it as a kid in theaters and it was something else. Peter Jackson must be a huge fan himself he did really well I thought. But I also haven’t read the books yet. Going to be fun comparing the books and the movies

Kind of sucks he missed with The Hobbit though, I wonder why he failed? Or at least, most fans seem to think he did a poor job...
It didn't need to be three movies. That was the issue. But money talks.
 
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AetherMage

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Probably my favorite books. I've read them 8 or 10 times. The Hobbit is made for a younger reader, but is still a fantastic story. Both are much better than the movies.

Interesting stuff. The Dark Tower seems very popular and highly praised. I heard Stephen King is well known for the length of his books, among many other great aspects. How is his wrying style in The Dark Towers. I like the title a lot

The Dark Tower is awful in my opinion. Starts off excellent, but bogs down after a few books and has the very worst ending in the history of literature. Made me regret ever starting it.
 

SirKicksalot

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Kind of sucks he missed with The Hobbit though, I wonder why he failed? Or at least, most fans seem to think he did a poor job...

He did a great job. The Hobbit is not a cinematic book. For example, Bard is pulled straight out of Tolkien's ass the paragraph before he shoots the arrow. That doesn't work in a film. The pace and characters of the book are difficult to put on screen.
The third movie (ignoring the prologue) starts where Tolkien took a break from writing because he couldn't figure out the story after Smaug. The third movie was unfinished at launch - the extended edition has many differences and it's still incomplete.
 

Madflavor

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The Lord of the Rings Trilogy marked the end of an era were blockbuster movies could get away with not targeting the lowest common denominator in audiences, and be an intelligent, slow burning, crowd pleasing set of films. There hasn't been anything like it ever since.
 

NecrosaroIII

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Feb 2, 2020
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Probably my favorite books. I've read them 8 or 10 times. The Hobbit is made for a younger reader, but is still a fantastic story. Both are much better than the movies.



The Dark Tower is awful in my opinion. Starts off excellent, but bogs down after a few books and has the very worst ending in the history of literature. Made me regret ever starting it.

Kind of agree. Drawing of the Three and Wasteland are great. Wizard and Glass was bad. Kind of liked Wolves of the Calla. Didnt like Song of Susannah. The Dark Tower felt like three novels worth of concepts rushed into one book.

The final battle does suck. But I loved the epilogue. I loved the epilogue too much.
 
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