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review 2019-08-09 11:08
The Two Towers (The Lord of the Rings, #2) by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Two Towers - J.R.R. Tolkien

It's been a long time since I've continued my LotR marathon. Life became really hectic last year and I couldn't finish. Since then, I have reread The Hobbit and The Fellowship of the Ring and have enjoyed both of them tremendously all over again. Even more so than the last time. It was a thrill being back in Middle-Earth and falling in love with the characters again. Now finishing The Two Towers I can easily say that this series is becoming one of my favorites.

 

That's not to say I didn't have some difficulties with this book. Last year, when I first tried to read this book, I did struggle a little bit. I felt that it dragged and it was slow in the first half of the book when Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli were chasing the Hobbits. However, upon rereading those portions this time around, I didn't have those problems. I felt like it was fascinating getting to see more of the world and feeling the anxiety the characters were going through made it feel that much more real. I believe a part of my struggle with it the first time had mostly to do with my environment and the subsequent moving house I had to go through last year. It's hard to focus on the book you're reading when you have so many worries going on in your mind. Which is why I ultimately decided to put it aside until recently to fully immerse myself into the world and story. And it definitely paid off this time.

 

However, one thing I struggled with before and I still struggled with this time were the Ents or, as I like to call, sexist trees. Are you kidding me, Tolkien? I heard so many wonderful things about the Ents and I was so excited to see them in all their glory... and it turns out that the "Entwives" are shallow and like to boss the Ents around. That they didn't care about the beauty of nature or learning about the world. They just want to have things done their way. It was so disappointing to see that they were restricted to a gender-binary. They are trees, ffs! I wanted to see them be more epic than stupid, trivial, shallow reasons. And whilst I do admit when they weren't focusing on how "foolish" the Entwives were being, the Ents were pretty badass. But otherwise, they were just a letdown. I hope they are better in the movies once I finally watch them. The Ents are what really made it difficult to fully enjoy this book.

 

Other than that, I really liked this book! We got to see more of the characters we got to meet in the first book, really stand out in this book! And meet some new ones along the way. Finally got to meet both Eowyn and Faramir in this one! I really like what I see of the two so far. Eowyn is fierce, strong, and intelligent. Faramir is bold, caring, and sweet. I cannot wait to see more of them in book three. 

 

But I think my absolute favorite parts of this book are seeing Frodo and Sam's relationship and seeing more of Gollum. Frodo and Sam have a kinship stronger than anyone in this book. It's absolutely beautiful seeing how much these two love each other. They really would be lost without each other. And Sam! Ugh! The way he would give up his life just to make sure Frodo is protected at all costs just makes my heart asugufghdfh I love them. And Gollum! Okay, he's my favorite character in the entire series. He won my heart back in The Hobbit and I think he shall forever have my heart. Needless to say, we get to see more of who he really is in this book and it's beautiful and heart-warming and gut-wrenching all at the same time. I won't say anymore because spoilers, but you really need to see how wonderful of a character he is for yourself. It hurts me in all the right ways.

 

Anyway, I don't need to tell you to read these books. Most people have read them already. And that's good! I do think they are worth the read. These books really do live up to the hype. They are fun, interesting, adventurous, and fantastic books. If you haven't read them yet then I highly suggest you do. There's a little bit of something for everyone here. It's not the best representative-wise. The characters are all white, and not many female characters take center stage, but they're a classic and I think you should read them at least once in your life.

 

I only have one more book to go! I'm looking forward to seeing how this fantasy epic wraps up!

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text 2019-08-05 19:59
Halloween Bingo 2019 PreParty -- Question for 08/05 (Day 5): Favorite Series with Supernatural Elements?
Witches Abroad - Terry Pratchett
Harry Potter Box Set: The Complete Collection - J.K. Rowling
The Chronicles of Narnia - C.S. Lewis,Pauline Baynes
The True Game: Kings Blood Four/Necromancer Nine/Wizard's Eleven - Sheri S. Tepper
The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien
The Once and Future King - T.H. White
The Dragonbone Chair - Tad Williams
Merlin Trilogy - Mary Stewart
The Green Mile - Mark Geyer,Stephen King
The Complete Vampire Chronicles (Vampire Chronicles, #1-#4) - Anne Rice

Hmmm, are we talking "series" as in "including trilogies and quartets" here, or does it have to be more than that number?  Also, what about works that were intended as one (very long) book but are traditionally broken up into several parts that are published separately (like Tolkien's Lord of the Rings) and books originally published in several self-contained parts but now frequently combined into one omnibus volume (like Stephen King's Green Mile)?

 

Anyway, starting with the beasts that nobody can legitimately dispute are series and moving on from there, based on the assumption that it's "yes" to all of the above:

 

MULTI-BOOK SERIES ( >5 INDIVIDUAL ENTRIES)
Terry Pratchett: Discworld
J.K. Rowling: Harry Potter
C.S. Lewis: The Chronicles of Narnia
Sheri S. Tepper: The True Game (all nine books, including the Mavin Manyshaped trilogy and the Jinian / End of the Game trilogy)

 

TRILOGIES / QUARTETS / MULTI-PART OMNIBUS VOLUMES
J.R.R. Tolkien: The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings
T.H. White: The Once and Future King
Tad Williams: Memory, Sorrow and Thorn
Mary Stewart: Merlin Trilogy
Stephen King: The Green Mile

 

JUMPED THE SHARK
Anne Rice: The Vampire Chronicles

 

Unsurprisingly, almost all of my favorite supernaturally-tinged series are fantasy -- and I read both Green Mile and the Vampire Chronicles for pretty much everything but their horror contents.  That said, Rice jumped the shark for me when she insisted on using Lestat (of all characters) as a vehicle for exploring her rapidly altering expressions of faith ... shortly before going BBA and thus earning herself a place on my no-go list once and for all.  I still like the first books in the series, though, especially the first two.

 

 

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text 2019-08-05 19:16
Halloween Bingo Preparty Supernatural Series
Bitten - Kelley Armstrong
The Hobbit & The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien
The Wine of Angels - Phil Rickman
The Palace - Chelsea Quinn Yarbro

In general, it would have to LOTR.  Because I've read one copy into the ground.

 

 

But this year, my top three Halloween fitting titles would be:

 

The Women of the Otherworld series. - I believe this was Armstrong's first series.  At times it shows, but you can see her developing as a writer (and she works with her editor).  What I really love about this series is not only does feature women, but each woman is strong in her own way.  And I say this as someone who didn't like all the women in the series.  Additionally, the women are friends with each other.  

 

Merrily Watkins - I've developed a love for series, mostly because of the characters and the use of English folklore.

 

Count St. Germain Series (counting the Olivia books) - world's greatest vampire.

 

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text 2019-08-05 17:16
Halloween Bingo Pre-Party: Favorite Series with Supernatural Elements
The Witching Hour - Anne Rice
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone - J.K. Rowling,Mary GrandPré
The Hobbit & The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien
The Crystal Cave - Mary Stewart
Dance of the Goblins - Jaq D. Hawkins

This one took a little thinking for me because I don't follow many series. When I do they tend to be Fantasy genre and the supernatural aspect is magic or shapeshifting. Horror tends to have more stand alones. So for what it's worth, these are the series that came to mind.

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text 2019-06-22 20:28
Moonlight Reader - towards the 500
A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess
Chocolat - Joanne Harris
It Was a Dark and Stormy Night, Snoopy - Charles M. Schulz
The Sandman, Vol. 1: Preludes and Nocturnes - Neil Gaiman,Malcolm Jones III,Karen Berger,Sam Kieth,Todd Klein,Mike Dringenberg
London - Edward Rutherfurd
Chaos: The Making of a New Science - James Gleick
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland & Other Stories - Lewis Carroll
The Hobbit & The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien
The Mists of Avalon - Marion Zimmer Bradley
Ramses: The Son of Light - Christian Jacq,Mary Feeney

More essential books, by request. :)

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