In case you are wondering; No, I did not make a mistake on my post title! This week I read through the last few chapters of Book 1 in The Fellowship of the Rings and finished the first chapter in Book 2! And let me tell you, I could not be more excited to be already half way through this book! Whooo Hooo!!!
We left off in chapter 9 at the part when Frodo and his band of merry hobbits had arrived at the Prancing Pony. Frodo had a brief conversation with Strider and then an "accident" occured that resulted with the Ring slipping onto Frodo's finger and he vanished!
While that piece of advice is a little on the late side, the letter also tells the hobbits that they can trust Strider. So, the hobbits take him on as a guide and they set out the next morning.
In chapter 11 we get this really long poem/song about an Elf queen named Luthien Tinuviel who falls in love with a mortal named Beren. I knew while I was trying to read through this that it was important and that it was foreshadowing what we learn about Strider later on, so I was trying really hard to grab hold of this poem/song and plow my way through it without getting lost. But Oh, Dear God seriously! These poems are ridiculous and this is only the beginning!
I'm not sure if I am the right one to give JRR Tolkien advice on how to write music, but hasn't he ever heard of a chorus? Some form of repetition that makes songs easier to learn? I'm not sure what they call it in poetry but I just know that when learning a song the chorus is at the heart of it. No matter how badly you stumble over the verses once you get to the chorus you can drive it home!
After the really long poem/song Strider comes in with an equally long explanation for the story within the song. Of course that eventually turns into a paragraph that reads like those chapters of the Bible that are all "And David beget Matthew who beget Gabriel who beget Susan who beget Clementine". I think all of that was supposed to eventually prepare you to learn that Arwen (Strider's love interest) was beget from Luthien and Beren, but it all starts to get a little fuzzy when they go on for so long.
Once they get to Rivendell we get to meet Elrond and Arwen. Bilbo comes back into the picture and after a big feast Bilbo entertains the group with a four page long poem about some guy named Earendil and a Silmaril, which I think was supposed to be a boat.
In the next hundred pages we have the Council of Elrond to look forward to. And the forming of the Fellowship of the Ring in its entirety. Whether or not all of the Fellowship will make it through those hundred pages...we will have to wait and see!
Now for the Life Lesson:
Life Lesson #3
This week our Life Lesson comes not from Tolkien but from another very wise and epic author, Rowling, and her character of Arthur Weasley...
Never trust anything that can think for itself if you can't see where it keeps its brain.
After getting stabbed on Weathertop, Frodo feels an overwhelming feeling of quilt. He knows that by putting the Ring on he was only obeying the desire of the Enemy. He feels that the Ring was calling to him and he can't believe he was so weak as to bend to it. Then when Frodo is trying to prepare to cross the ford into Rivendell and the Black Riders are calling out for him to wait, Tolkien writes that a strong hatred rises up in Frodo because he knows that the Ring is what is making him hesitate.
Those of us who are fans of this series (whether it be via the books or the movies) know that this is not the last time the Ring will tempt Frodo. But since this is the first time that Frodo realizes that the Ring might just have a mind of its own, I thought it was the perfect time to address this all too important life lesson!