Category Archives: The Hobbit

Top Ten Tuesday – Fall 2019 TBR (Sept 24)

I haven’t posted anything here forever, so I thought it was about time to get going again.

TTT-Big2Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme that is hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week a different topic is posted inviting the participants to come up with a list of ten things to do with the topic.

This week’s topic is ‘Books on My Fall 2019 TBR List.’ The ones I’ve chosen are a variety of books. Some I’ve had for too long, others are ones that are fairly new to me, but are ones I really want to read soon. I’m not always the best at getting through my TBR piles, but hopefully I’ll get through more than half of these in the next few months.

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  1. The Way of Tea and Justice (Becca Stevens) – I got this one for Christmas last year and it looks like a really interesting read.
  2. Voyages in the Underworld of Orpheus Black (Marcus Sedgwick, Julian Sedgwick, Alexis Deacon) – this is a review copy I got free from LibraryThing Early Reviewers, so it’s about time I got it read. I am about 60 pages into it and enjoying it so far.
  3. The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons (Sam Kean) – I got this one for Christmas last year as well. Sam Kean writes interesting and engaging non-fiction books, mainly of a scientific nature. This one on the history of the human brain really piqued my interest. I need to get to it soon.
  4. This is How it Always Is (Laurie Frankel) – I received this novel for Christmas last year and it looks lie one I’ll really enjoy when I get around to it.
  5. Hallelujah Anyway: Rediscovering Mercy (Anne Lamott) – yet another Christmas gift from last year and it’s Anne Lamott, so it needs to be read!
  6. Inspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again
     (Rachel Held Evans) – it was so sad when Rachel Held Evans died earlier this year at such a young age. This was her last book and I’ve wanted to read it for a while. I will soon.
  7. The Humans (Matt Haig) – I haven’t read anything by Matthew Haig yet, so I need to remedy that. Plus I’ve heard lots of good things about this one.
  8. Wearing God: Clothing, Laughter, Fire, and Other Overlooked Ways of Meeting God (Lauren F. Winner) – I’ve had this one unread on my shelf for too long. I always enjoy reading Lauren Winner, so I’m not sure why I haven’t gotten to this one yet.
  9. There and Back Again: JRR Tolkien and the Origins of the Hobbit (Mark Atherton) – this is yet another of last year’s Christmas gifts. The Hobbit is my favourite book, so I’m sure I’ll enjoy this one.
  10. Surpassing Certainty: What My Twenties Taught Me (Janet Mock) – I got this last month and started reading it right away, but then I got distracted by other book. I’ll get back to it soon for sure.

Top Ten Tuesday – Books I Meant to Read in 2017, But Never Did (Jan 9)

toptentuesdayTop Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week a different topic is posted inviting the participants to come up with a list of ten things to do with the topic.

This week’s topic is ‘Ten Books We Meant To Read In 2017 But Didn’t Get To (and totally plan to get to in 2018!!)’ All of the following books appeared on at least one of my many TBR lists last year. I managed to start a few of them, but none of them were anywhere near finished! I’d like to think that I’d manage to get them read this year, but I hope I haven’t cursed them by putting them on another list like this!

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  1. The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto – Mitch Albom. I’ve had this one for a couple of years or more and enjoyed all his other books, so I’m not sure why I’ve left this one unread for so long.
  2. Sacred Reading: The Ancient Art of Lectio Divina – Michael Casey. It’s over three years since I purchased this book about lectio divina. I really looked forward to reading it at the time, but it still remains unread.
  3. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay – J.K. Rowling. I got this round about the time the movie came out. I loved the movie, but haven’t picked this up yet. I’m sure it wouldn’t be a long read. Maybe I’ll save it for this year’s Savvy Readathon.
  4. The Complete Robot – Isaac Asimov. I started reading this one, was enjoying it, then got distracted by other books. The fact that it is a collection of short stories means that I’ll be able to pick up easily from where I left off.
  5. A Hobbit, a Wardrobe, and a Great War: How J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis Rediscovered Faith, Friendship, and Heroism in the Cataclysm of 1914-18 – Joseph Loconte. I received this one a couple of Christmas’s ago and had great intentions of quickly getting into it. Hopefully I’ll do just that soon, especially as it’s a book about two of my favourite writers.
  6. Convictions Matter: The Function of Salvation Army Doctrines – Ray Harris. I’ve started this one a couple of times, but on each occasion I’ve never gotten that far. This will be the year that I keep on going!
  7. The Drawing of the Three (The Dark Tower #2) – Stephen King. I read The Gunslinger earlier on last year with the intention of at least reading this book, the second Dark Tower book, before the end of the year. I’d even thought I might get round to book three. Lots of people have told me it’s a great series, so I need to try and get on with reading more of it.
  8. In the First Circle – Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. I’ve written about my failure to read this on a fair number of occasions. I’m determined to get it read this year.
  9. Bradbury Speaks: Too Soon from the Cave, Too Far from the Stars – Ray Bradbury. This collection of autobiographical essays has sat unread on my shelf for too long. I know it’s one that I’ll enjoy, so I need to read it soon.
  10. Outlander – Diana Gabaldon. I promised my wife that I’d read this one, so I started it last summer. I got to about page 100 and neglected to finish it. I’m not sure why, because I was kind of enjoying it. I’ll try to get back to it soon, although when I do I may have to restart it. I’ll see how much of what I read I can actually remember!

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Top Ten Tuesday – Unique Titles (Oct 24)

toptentuesdayTop Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week a different topic is posted inviting the participants to come up with a list of ten things to do with the topic.

This week’s topic is ‘Top Ten Unique Book Titles’. Quite often book titles tend to be bland or too similar to others already published.  Although it’s important that the actual content of the book be worthwhile, a unique book title can also draw a person in. Here are ten books from my shelves that have, in my opinion anyway, titles like this:

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  1. Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls – David Sedaris
  2. Optimists Die First – Susin Nielsen
  3. The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry – Rachel Joyce
  4. 13 Things That Don’t Make Sense – Michael Brooks
  5. When Did Wild Poodles Roam the Earth? An Imponderables Book – David Feldman
  6. A Hobbit, a Wardrobe, and a Great War: How J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis Rediscovered Faith, Friendship, and Heroism in the Cataclysm of 1914-18 – Joseph Loconte
  7. The Man Who Loved Books Too Much: The True Story of a Thief, a Detective, and a World of Literary Obsession – Allison Hoover Bartlett
  8. The 100 Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared – Jonas Jonasson
  9. The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination: Original Short Fiction for the Modern Evil Genius – John Joseph Adams (editor)
  10. Undermajordomo Minor – Patrick deWitt

I haven’t read all of these yet, but for most of them it was the title that first drew me in. My favourites from the list would have to be the ones by Jonas Jonasson and Patrick deWitt, both of which were very funny and unique.

Happy Birthday Bilbo and Stephen

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If you’ve been reading any book blogs or visited bookstagram today, you’ll have realised that today is the 80th anniversary of the publication of The Hobbit and is also Stephen King’s 70th birthday. The Hobbit is, of course, my favourite book of all time, whereas Stephen King is someone I am slowly rediscovering again. He was my favourite author in my teen years, but I got away from reading him for about 25 years.

I discovered The Hobbit in the early 70s, when Bernard Cribbins read it on Jackanory for a week. I can remember rushing home from school to see it – no VCRs in those days – because I didn’t want to miss a word of it. The same year we read it as a class at school and I was hooked. In the early 80s we got a Sinclair ZX Spectrum computer and one of the first games I got was The Hobbit adventure game, which came with the copy of the book pictured above. I don’t think I ever finished the game and seem to remember that things used to go awry whenever I got into Mirkwood. The Hobbit is a book that I read at least once every three years and I never grow tired of it. I haven’t watched the recent movies yet and have written enough about it here and elsewhere, so I don’t need to go over my reasons why again.

My first encounter with Stephen King came when I was about 14 or 15. If I remember correctly, I think the first book of his I read was Salem’s Lot. I had never read anything like it before and for the next few years I read anything of his that I could get my hands on. My favourite book of his at the time was The Dead Zone. I got it round about Christmas one year and read it in less than two days. I read it once again the following year, but haven’t read it since. I’d be interested in reading it again to see how much I like it now.

In the mid-80s I read Skeleton Crew and it is still my favourite King short story collection. Included in it is the story that still freaks me out, The Monkey. A character in one of the Toy Story movies brought back memories of it to me again and I had to search out the story again. Sure enough, it still freaked me out as much as it originally had.  Reading that collection again ignited my interest in King’s books again and I slowly got back to his books again. The problem is that in the ensuing years he has written so much more that I’m having a hard time catching up. My favourite book of his from recent years is the one in the above picture, 11/22/63, which is an awesome read. I haven’t seen any of the recent King movie adaptations yet, but I intend to watch them eventually. I’d like to read The Dark Tower series first and try to reread It as well, because it is so long since I read it.

So, happy birthday to two literary ‘giants’ that have had a huge impact on my reading life. I look forward to catching up on the Stephen King books I have missed and also to many more still to come. I also look forward to many more readings of The Hobbit, but I don’t think it will ever be knocked off the top of my favourites, although there are perhaps Stephen King books that come close.

Musing Mondays (Nov 21)

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Musing Mondays is a weekly meme, hosted by Jenn at Books And A Beat, that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Are there any particular worlds in books in which you’d like to live?

It’s been a really long time since I did one of these posts, so I’ll answer a few of the prompts, as well as the random question, instead of choosing just one:

I’m currently reading: I always have too many books on the go, but one that I’m currently reading and enjoying is Beyond Loneliness: The Gift of God’s Friendship by Trevor Hudson. It’s the first book in this year’s Renovaré Book Club, which I joined again this year. Another book I’m trying to get through is The Complete Robot by Isaac Asimov. This selection of classic short stories is the first I’ve read by Asimov. So far it’s a great read.

I can’t wait to get a copy of: either Finding God in the Waves by Mike McHargue or Rescuing Jesus by Deborah Jian Lee. They are both on my Christmas wish list and are two I’d really like to read soon.

Now the random question: Are there any particular worlds in books in which you’d like to live? There are two: Narnia or Middle-Earth. Both of these imaginary worlds are so different to where I am now, but Lewis and Tolkien created two vivid alternative worlds that would be exciting to live in, plus I think I’d make a good Hobbit!

 

Booking Through Thursday – Multiples (Feb 11)

btt2This week Booking Through Thursday poses the following questions:

Do you own multiple copies of any books? Why? Is it the format? Size? Just because you love it?

There are some classics that I have hard copies and e-books of, mainly because the digital copies were free. Besides these, the only books that I have a significant number of multiples of are The Bible and The Hobbit.

For The Bible it is handy, not to mention essential, to have different translations and paraphrases for my work and studies. One of my favourites would be a copy of The Living Bible that I received as a prize for being the highest boy collector in a Sunday School sponsored walk when I was 10.

As I have said many times before, The Hobbit is my favourite book of all time, so when I see unique or different additions I am often tempted to buy them. My favourite is the first copy I owned from almost 40 years ago. It’s in fairly rough shape, but I’d not want to part with it now. I can’t read it now for fear of it falling apart, but that’s what my other copies are for.

Musing Mondays (Feb 8)

musingmondays51Musing Mondays is a weekly meme, hosted by Jenn at A Daily Rhythm, that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: What would you say is the best children’s book you’ve ever read?

I’m just going to answer the random question:

the hobbit favouriteIn my opinion the best children’s book I’ve ever read, which is also my favourite book of all time is The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. I first read it when I was about ten years old and loved it right from the start. I’ve read it many times since, and I think that this year I’m due to read it again.

I still haven’t seen the three Peter Jackson movie adaptations yet, but that may change soon. My son now has all three extended version on blu-ray and I did say I would watch them with him at some point. I may run out of excuses soon for not watching them! Maybe I’ll read the book again soon and then offer to watch the movies with him after that. I’m sure I’ll have plenty more to write about on here then.

The Hobbit

in a hole in the ground(source: http://quotesgram.com/)

J.R.R. Tolkien was born on this day in 1892. The above is the best book beginning ever.

Top Ten Tuesday – Christmas Wish List (Dec 22)

toptentuesdayTop Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week a different topic is posted inviting the participants to come up with a list of ten things to do with the topic.

This week’s topic is ‘Top Ten Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Leaving Under My Tree This Year’. I haven’t posted here much for a while now, due to a number of reasons I won’t get into right now, but I thought this would be a fun topic to get restarted with.

Every year round about the end of September I give my family a wishlist of books that I wouldn’t mind getting for Christmas. Usually there are about 12 books on the list and I’m usually fortunate enough to get at least half of them. Even though I come up with this list, it’s still lots of fun on Christmas morning discovering which ones I actually received. This year I came up with an initial list of 12, then added another later on that I had forgotten about. So this week’s top ten will in fact be a top baker’s dozen!

  1. The Buried GiantKazuo Ishiguro
  2. Undermajordomo Minor – Patrick deWitt
  3. The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto – Mitch Albom
  4. Simply Good News – N.T. Wright
  5. Daddy Lenin And Other Stories – Guy Vanderhaeghe
  6. The Sherlock Holmes Book – DK Publishing
  7. A Hobbit, a Wardrobe, and a Great War Joseph Loconte
  8. Amazing Fantastic Incredible: A Marvelous Memoir – Stan Lee
  9. The Bazaar of Bad Dreams: Stories – Stephen King
  10. Yes, My Accent Is Real: And Some Other Things I Haven’t Told You – Kunal Nayyar
  11. Stitches: A Handbook On Meaning, Hope And Repair – Anne Lamott
  12. The Life You’ve Always Wanted: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People – John Ortberg
  13. The Story of Kullervo – J.R.R. Tolkien

It’s quite a varied list and I look forward to reading some of these very soon!

Top Ten Tuesday – Fall TBR List (Sept 22)

toptentuesdayTop Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week a different topic is posted inviting the participants to come up with a list of ten things to do with the topic.

This week’s topic is ‘Top Ten Books On My Fall TBR’. Unfortunately most of my books are packed in boxes in a storage container next to our house as we await renovations to take place. I thought we would have had them unpacked by now, but I do have some unread books sitting around, as well as enough in both my Kobo and Kindle apps. Add to that the fact that the library is two minutes walk from our house, then it shouldn’t be too much of a problem to find things to add to my TBR list. I’ll just have to make some adjustments to my original reading ideas and everything will be alright. So, here is my list:

  1. Doctor Who: The Shakespeare Notebooks – Justin Richards. I picked this one up at Fan Expo earlier in the month. It looks like a fun read.
  2. Shattered Glass – Teresa Toten. I received this one from LibraryThing Early Reviewers a couple of months ago. I started it and forgot about it, but I should read it soon and get it reviewed.
  3. The Day it Rained Forever – Ray Bradbury. This is a collection of short stories I picked up this summer. I love reading Bradbury, so this is one I should enjoy.
  4. Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus – C. Christopher Smith, John Pattison, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove. This one has been unread on my Kobo forever, so it’s time I got around to reading it.
  5. Convictions Matter: The Function of Salvation Army Doctrines – Ray Harris. This is yet another one I’ve had for too long, although I did start it and got distracted by something else. I’ll get into it again soon for sure.
  6. The Turn of the Screw – Henry James. I am already about half-way through this one, as it is on my list of 50 books for The Classics Club. I’m a bit behind in my classics reading, so finishing off this one should help me get back on track.
  7. Candide – Voltaire. This is another one on my classics list. I downloaded a free copy to my Kobo, so I have no excuse to leave it unread.
  8. The Autistic Brain: Thinking Across the Spectrum – Temple Grandin. I read a couple of chapters of this one last year, so it’s time to get back to it. It’s on my Kobo, so there’s no problem in accessing it.
  9. Lectio Divina – The Sacred Art: Transforming Words & Images Into Heart-Centered Prayer – Christine Valters Paintner.  Over the past couple of years I’ve been attempting to incorporate Lectio Divina into my daily living, so I’m hoping this book will help me in my continuing endeavours.
  10. The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien. This is my favourite read and it’s been a few years since I last read it. I’m keeping my pocket edition handy, so that I’ll not be stuck for something to read wherever I am.

IMG_0212If I get stuck for choices, I also have the first twenty Penguin Little Black Classics to read, which I received as a gift yesterday.

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