The Ring Goes South by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Balrog by Ted Naismith

The Balrog by Ted Naismith

This is not so much a review as a progress report. After a fantastic start to my 2017 Reading Challenges, things have slowed down quite a bit. I’m still keeping up with the Hobbit/Lord of the Rings Readalong, however, and according to Goodreads I’m still seven books ahead of my overall schedule for the year.

I’ve just finished The Ring Goes South, part two of The Fellowship of the Ring in the Millennium edition. I have to say that I’m really enjoying reading The Lord of the Rings in these smaller volumes. I’m not sure why exactly. Maybe it’s the hardcover format with the sturdy pages, or maybe it’s the feeling that the book isn’t as long. Not that I’ve ever minded reading a long book, but I think with the lack of time to read lately, it’s been a comfort to know that I can dip into the story every so often without having to commit a lot of time to it. It’s purely psychological, but isn’t reading fiction a largely psychological matter?

In any case, the story of Frodo and the Fellowship still has the ability to move me, even after all these years and multiple re-readings. The highlight of The Ring Goes South for me is still the chapter called The Bridge of Khazad-dûm, as I’m sure it is for many readers. The confrontation on the bridge is one of my favorite scenes in all of literature.

As I watch April turn into May, I hope to make more time to read, but also to blog. I’m way behind in reading posts from other bookbloggers, and I hope to get back into a more regular pattern of reading, writing, and commenting.

Deacon Nick

Nick Senger is a husband, a father of four, and a Catholic school teacher, vice principal and technology coordinator. He taught junior high literature and writing for over 25 years, and has been a Catholic school educator since 1990. In 2001 he was named a Distinguished Teacher of the Year by the National Catholic Education Association.

1 Response

  1. Brona says:

    Glad to see you’re still progressing through the LOTR Nick.

    Like you I have enjoyed the leisurely read this time around & have been very grateful for my schedule as life has ended up very hectic this year. It has taken 3 days off work with a nasty cold for me to finally catch up on some of my reading & blogging stuff.

    Like you, I like the stand that Gandalf makes on the Bridge of Khazad-Dum. Although there are some very strong faith based themes evident with this stand, fall & ultimate resurrection, it never feels like Tolkien is preaching. He always said he never wrote the book with analogies in mind, but obviously the religious stories that he grew up with and were a central part of his life, influenced the type of story he wrote as well as infiltrating the details.

    I started book 3 yesterday – which is one of my favourite sections of the journey.
    See you in Isengard.

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