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Topic: Lord of The Rings series

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Subject: Lord of The Rings series
Date Posted: 4/25/2012 1:08 PM ET
Member Since: 4/27/2009
Posts: 5
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I have decidedbtobread the LoTR books this summer. Does anyone have a recommendation on whether The Hobbit and The Silmarillion be read before it after the trilogy? Or does it not make a difference?
Date Posted: 4/25/2012 7:39 PM ET
Member Since: 9/14/2008
Posts: 379
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I read The Hobbit first. (High school english class). Than the Trilogy. I'm torn about reading the Silmarillion. I haven't really decided wether or not to read it.

Date Posted: 4/26/2012 9:41 AM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2010
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Read the Hobbit first, then the Trilogy.  I read the Silmarillion after a second read thru of the Hobbit and Trilogy.  I was able to stick with the Silmarillion and understand it better after reading the other books first. Its been a while since I read the Silmarillion, but I seem to recall it wasn't at all like the other books as far as plotting, story, characters etc.  Actually I had to struggle to finish it.


Date Posted: 4/26/2012 8:51 PM ET
Member Since: 4/27/2009
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the silmarillion was actually my husband's favorite book, and he doesn't read much. So I'm excited to read that one
Date Posted: 5/8/2012 12:48 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2009
Posts: 1,588
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It is different, though.  Like reading non-fiction compared to a novel.  On a sliding scale between conveying facts and history and telling a dang good story, Silmarillion is much closer to the conveying info side of the scale.

Date Posted: 6/28/2012 12:49 AM ET
Member Since: 9/8/2010
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I tend to agree with the rest of the posters: read the Hobbit first, then the LoTR, then the Silmarillion if you really like the rest of them. It's like reading a history textbook for Middle Earth. Really interesting, but don't try to get through too much at once. If you couldn't get enough of the appendices at the end of Return of the King, you'll love it, though. It's not that I didn't like it, just that you have to approach it differently than most books.

Kat (polbio) -
Date Posted: 6/28/2012 6:06 PM ET
Member Since: 10/10/2008
Posts: 3,067
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I also agree with that order, Hobbit, LOTR, than Silmarillion.

Date Posted: 7/4/2012 11:01 AM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 13,991
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I also agree with that order, Hobbit, LOTR, than Silmarillion.

Me too. And, altho I loved loved loved LOTR, and have re-read it more times than I can count, I simply could not finish Silmarillion.....

Date Posted: 7/27/2012 5:13 PM ET
Member Since: 10/7/2008
Posts: 921
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Yes, Hobbit, LOTR and Silmarillion. I'm with you Betty, just couldn't finish the Silmarillion.  It reminds me of the begats section of the Old testament, very dry.

Just a bit of trivia here, Tolkien's son and author Guy Gavriel Kay helped put the Silmarillion together after his death.  I would highly recommend Kay's work.  His Fionavar Trilogy is right up there with LOTR for me, I have read it multiple times and love it!

Last Edited on: 9/24/12 5:31 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/31/2012 2:46 PM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 13,991
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wowie, I did not know that.

I knew Silmarilion was done after Tolkiens death, by his son and another writer, but I did not recall it being Guy Gavriel Kay.

I found GGK relatively recently. Some of his books I  loved---I think they were more contemporary/urban fantasy, or magic in contemp. times---but some of the others I could not get through....I'd have to see some summaries to remember which was which.

Date Posted: 8/23/2012 12:09 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2012
Posts: 38
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I agree with everyone who said Hobbit, then LOTR, then Silmarillion.   My hat's off to folks who make it through the Silmarillion.  I gave up almost immediately, and posted the book to my bookshelf.   The Hobbit and LOTR are some of my favorites ever, but the Silmarillion... I just couldn't get into it. 

Subject: Lord of the Ring series
Date Posted: 12/14/2012 10:03 PM ET
Member Since: 1/5/2011
Posts: 1
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Picked up  the Silmarillion on CD

It seemed to me to be more comprehensible

when there is someone else to pronounce the

real tounge-twisters for you. It definitely goes


Date Posted: 1/3/2013 4:47 PM ET
Member Since: 5/8/2009
Posts: 45
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If after reading The Hobbit and LOtR you find yourself fascinated by the lore then by all means continue with the Silmarillion.  If you're only interested in the characters and history/lore bogs you down then you probably won't make it through though, as it's all historical background information.  Wonderful if you've ever wondered where the elves go when they leave Middle-earth or just what the hell Gandalf really is, far less so if you only want to see Legolas kicking orc ass.

Last Edited on: 1/3/13 4:47 PM ET - Total times edited: 1