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lorien
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself


Mstermind1 wrote:
It was by luck that I found this group - and I am very excited!
I am a bit different from most of the posts so far --- I actually have never read the LOTR trilogy nor seen the movies. I am an English teacher of British literature (late in life career change, but that is another story), and I have taught The Hobbit for 3 years now.
I must confess that I am not a fan of the fantasy genre -- Charles Dickens is more my style -- but the more I read the Hobbit - and the more I study Tolkien - the more fascinated I become.
I so very much look forward to reading all of the insights into this series.
Molly





Welcome Molly, your timing couldn't be more perfect. I have been reading Shippey's Tolkien: Author of the Century and he brings up an interesting topic that I will be opening up a bit later. That is: is literature taught in schools better than literature that is read. His point is that, though popular reading is not always of high quality, a work should not be dismissed just because it is popular. As an example he brings up Dickens as an example of a quality author whose work was rejected as "serious" literature because he was popular.

This will be right in your area and we can discuss how this question relates to LOTR. Welcome to the Tolkien Reading Group.
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BarbaraN
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Ardo Wrote:
About ten years ago, I read "The Lord Of The Rings" aloud { from beginning to end } to my then teenage daughter...In more recent years, I also read "The Hobbit" aloud to my wife...
--------------------------

We had a discussion about the importance of hearing Tolkien's work aloud some time ago in this group. The book below is now out of print but you can still read a wonderful essay by Ursula LeGuin at the B&N site on "Rhythmic Pattern in Lord of the Rings". Click the "Festures" tab and then "Read an Excerpt."

http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?z=y&bnit=H&bnrefer=BROWSE&EAN=9780312275...


She does an analysis of the Barrow-wight Chapter in the FotR book. This was one of those chapter I could see little point to when I first read the series. After reading her analysis I see it very differently. In fact, she gave me a different perspective on his writing that I had not thought of or even appreciated. I thought he was just a good story-teller who put together a complex history around it and created a totally comprehensive world. I see now that he seems to be a literary giant and that there is more quality to his writing style that I, at least, did not first recognized. Ursula K. LeGuin is more than a "cult" fan. She is a fellow writer and knows what she is talking about. From her essay I see that an audio is an absolute necessity to fully appreciate his style.
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Mstermind1
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Thank you for the very warm welcomes!  I tend to enjoy the "lurker" status, but you have made me feel so welcome that I may actually step out of my comfort zone and post a comment sometime!
 
I must say that in my "lurker" status I found the post regarding the website for the Hobbit Name generator.  I plugged in all my students' names and created nametags for them to wear in class.  It was a great hit.  Thank you to whoever provided that valuable information; it was very well received.
 
Molly
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BarbaraN
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself


Mstermind1 wrote:
Thank you for the very warm welcomes! I tend to enjoy the "lurker" status, but you have made me feel so welcome that I may actually step out of my comfort zone and post a comment sometime!
I must say that in my "lurker" status I found the post regarding the website for the Hobbit Name generator. I plugged in all my students' names and created nametags for them to wear in class. It was a great hit. Thank you to whoever provided that valuable information; it was very well received.
Molly





Please do post. I believe you said you were reading LOTR for the first time in this group. That is even better because you will be looking at it as a first-timer and bringing a totally different perspective to the discussion than the seasoned reread people. I think a lot of people don't post because they think everyone knows more than they do and they feel inferior. Don't feel that way. Your comments have a great deal of validity. Not only do they give the old-timers a fresh new look at things but they will help the overwhelming number of new people that are lurking but also afraid to post. Posting is quite addictive once you start.

As a first-timer, you might want to stick with the "Chapter" area threads. In those you will find most of the new readers and no spoilers. That is exactly what they are for. Just share your impressions of each chapter, and if you like, you can even speculate on where you think the book is going. For chapter readers, the rest of the book doesn't exist yet. Post in the topic threads if you feel comfortable. Sometimes they run a bit off topic to general impressions. Topic threads are mainly for the more advanced readers. You can start your own threads on any relevant topic any time you want to. So if you wanted to start a thread let's say on "Teaching LOTR" go ahead. There may be other teachers in the group that want to address the topic. If not, it will eventually sink to the bottom and be forgotten. :smileysad: I have many threads down there!

Seek your own level and interest and don't worry about anything else. This is a very supportive group. Besides, no one knows who you are! :smileywink: So says Bramblerose!
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thartter
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Hello all,
 
I discovered this group a little over a week ago as I was searching for info on the upcoming Hobbit movie.  I read and thoroughly enjoyed The Hobbit and LOTR when I was in grade school.  Then when the LOTR movies came out several years ago, I reread The Fellowship and the Two Towers, and enjoyed them even more the 2nd time around!  I haven't participated in book discussions before, but I've skimmed several of this group's posts and this seems like it would be interesting, so I'll give it a shot!  I hope to start participating this week since I'm nearly caught up with the schedule. 
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lorien
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself


thartter wrote:
Hello all,
I discovered this group a little over a week ago as I was searching for info on the upcoming Hobbit movie. I read and thoroughly enjoyed The Hobbit and LOTR when I was in grade school. Then when the LOTR movies came out several years ago, I reread The Fellowship and the Two Towers, and enjoyed them even more the 2nd time around! I haven't participated in book discussions before, but I've skimmed several of this group's posts and this seems like it would be interesting, so I'll give it a shot! I hope to start participating this week since I'm nearly caught up with the schedule.





Hi thatter and welcome. You and most of the group read LOTR when the movie came out and many of us for the first time and not since then. So you are well placed. As you have stated these books seem better with each reading. I know I am taking my rereading much more seriously this time around and enjoying it a lot more. We should be starting the Fellowship of the Ring March 3, but this is a pretty free group and you can continue to post in any thread you want to. In fact, in January we spent a lot of time on the movie waiting to get started. You might want to look that thread as well. I'm sure we will be discussing more on the movies as we go along.

Looking forward to your contributions.
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krb2g
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Hi,

I'm Katie, and I've been reading these books for years. I tend to re-read The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings at least once a year (usually mid-winter), and I've recently started reading The Silmarillion yearly as well. I'm looking forward to the discussion.
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BarbaraN
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

[ Edited ]

krb2g wrote:
Hi,

I'm Katie, and I've been reading these books for years. I tend to re-read The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings at least once a year (usually mid-winter), and I've recently started reading The Silmarillion yearly as well. I'm looking forward to the discussion.




Hi Katie. Welcome to the discussion. You must be in the expert category! I haven't read the Silmarillion once yet but I am looking forward to it. We should be getting into that after we finish LOTR. Perhaps you have some suggestions as to how we should approach this book. Normally we would treat it as a book to do in a month but maybe it is something we should spread out a little more. Any thoughts?

Message Edited by BarbaraN on 03-03-2008 04:21 PM
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TiggerBear
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Any thoughts?
----------------------------
Spread it out, reading in one piece is a bit like trying to eat a 32oz steak in one sitting. Sure you could do it, but it would sure give you a belly ache. And I must admit the first 3 times I read it, well lets just say it'll cure even my insomnia. The Similarion is just more digestible in small doses.
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krb2g
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

BarbaraN and TiggerBear,

I absolutely agree that the Silmarillion is best digested slowly; I also feel like having time to go back and re-read (if only to keep the characters straight) is helpful to increase comprehension. Part of the difficulty is that the Silmarillion was published posthumously and Tolkien didn't edit it as he did for the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings.
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oldBPLstackdenizen
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Greetings Katie, and Welcome!
 
It hasn't been so true for me in more recent years, but in my younger days, I too, used to re-read LOTR ritually every year --- only I usually started my re-reading in the Spring ( that always seemed like just the "right" time to me )...I have just read some of your comments, and it looks like they were clear and concise --
( if you've read any of my posts, you might have noticed that they sometimes get a little bit "muddy" )--- 
It's nice to know our little group is growing... ( one might even say: "burgeoning" ) ---
 
Ardo Whortleberry
Tolkien Reader
"Middle-earth Is A State Of Mind"
^^^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^^^^^^

Ardo Whortleberry
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oldBPLstackdenizen
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

WHOOPS!                    WHOOPS!                  WHOOPS!
I'm so sorry, Katie-- I've got to start paying closer attention --- I just realized that I haven't actually read any of your other posts yet ... I had read one by "Dagor" ( who appears to be another one of the newer members to the group )... But I'm sure your comments will be illuminating, as well ----Ardo
"Middle-earth Is A State Of Mind"
^^^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^^^^^^

Ardo Whortleberry
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lmpmn
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Just wanted to say a quick hello to all who have joined in recently.  Hello!  I'm Laura from Minnesota.  I'm also participating in the First Look Book Club here.  I think it's going to be a challenge for me to read these books simultaneously.  I hope I don't get too far behind!  I'm looking forward to the discussion--I'm sure I'll have many more questions than actual thoughts to be bandied about!
Happiness is a warm blanket!
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BarbaraN
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself


lmpmn wrote:
Just wanted to say a quick hello to all who have joined in recently. Hello! I'm Laura from Minnesota. I'm also participating in the First Look Book Club here. I think it's going to be a challenge for me to read these books simultaneously. I hope I don't get too far behind! I'm looking forward to the discussion--I'm sure I'll have many more questions than actual thoughts to be bandied about!





Glad to see you are still around. That First Look Club seems to lure everyone out the regular groups. I was wondering why some of the big participation groups like Epics and Woman's Lit were so dried up. I understand just reading all the posts in First Look can take up a good part of the day. :smileywink:

Our threads are perpetual and anyone can pick up a discussion at any time. We are not exactly speeding through everything. I'm beginning to get a feeling that we may still be on Book 1 of the Fellowship at the end of the month. We haven't even gotten Frodo on the road yet! So when you and the other Tolkien people in the First Look Club finally finish off you should be able to fit right in. Participate where you have time.

Actually, this might not be such a bad thing. We can spend more time on some of these interesting side issues and the Histories, which are definitely top-heavy for Book 1, and then take up Book 2 of the Fellowship next month. How does everyone feel about that?
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TiggerBear
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Oh I'd give 2 months before we even come close to exhausting our chatter. One doesn't seem long enough.
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pokeyspride2002
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Hi,
 
 Pokeyspride here! I just joined the B&N book club, I love writing poetry. I have seen all three LOTR movies, but have never had the opportunity to read the books. I am also a hige fan of the Tanya Huff Blood books series and have read the first three. I loved them so much I read them over and over. I would love to discuss LOTR though, I love it!!
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lorien
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself


pokeyspride2002 wrote:
Hi,
Pokeyspride here! I just joined the B&N book club, I love writing poetry. I have seen all three LOTR movies, but have never had the opportunity to read the books. I am also a hige fan of the Tanya Huff Blood books series and have read the first three. I loved them so much I read them over and over. I would love to discuss LOTR though, I love it!!





Hi pokeyspride. Welcome to the Tolkien group. We are just starting out and only as far as chapter 2 so it should be easy for you to catch up. As a poetry writer you may be interested in Tolkien's extensive use of poetry. Some of us also have a side discussion on the evolution of the story and how Tolkien the writer turned it into the final product. This is all extremely well documented in the Histories (see that thread) with reprints of all his versions and steps. You can really follow the creative process. That thread is at:

http://bookclubs.barnesandnoble.com/bn/board/message?board.id=tolkien&thread.id=995&jump=true

If you have the extended version of the Fellowship of the Ring movie, one of the extras on the 4th DVD covers how they turned the book into the movie screen play and then "story boarded" the whole thing. You may find the process very interesting.

Just join in whenever you wish. I'm looking forward to your contributions, especially from your point of view as a writer.
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lorien
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself


TiggerBear wrote:
Oh I'd give 2 months before we even come close to exhausting our chatter. One doesn't seem long enough.




I agree, but I'm just plodding along at my own pace. We could easily read the book and finish it off in a month, but I've done that. Now I am interested in going deeper and talking more about the sources, implications, and development of ideas and that is going to take a great deal more time. I also feel that each of the six books should be dealt with as separate but related entities. This time around, I'm relating them as separate books with a different focus on the "hero(s)" of each one and a different purpose. Like I feel Book 1 is Frodo's book but there is a shift to different people in the subsequent volumes and Frodo declines as the focus of the books. My feeling is not that LOTR is a book about Frodo and his Ring but of the important achievements and challenges of a series of common folks who rise to the occasion.
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EmeraldTear07
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself

Gosh, it's exciting to see that this group has started up. I've been a big LOTR fan since I was 15...but haven't reread the books since then. I live in London now and recently went to see the new production, The Lord of the Rings, at the Royal Theatre....gosh, it's phenominal. If any of you are ever in London, don't miss this. They have a website....www.lotr.com. Very well done (the musical that is...the website is nice too).
 
Anyway, I've decided it's time to reread the books. I seemed to have missed feb. and The Hobbit discussion, but I was planning to go out and find FOTR tomorrow to start reading again (left my copy back in the states) and logged into Barnes and Noble (which they don't have in London...sad!), and saw this group. I hope I'm able to join in on the discussions! It will be nice to stay connected to my "favorite" book store back in the states this way.:womanvery-happy:
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lorien
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Re: LOTR: Reading Group - Introduce Yourself


EmeraldTear07 wrote:
Gosh, it's exciting to see that this group has started up. I've been a big LOTR fan since I was 15...but haven't reread the books since then. I live in London now and recently went to see the new production, The Lord of the Rings, at the Royal Theatre....gosh, it's phenominal. If any of you are ever in London, don't miss this. They have a website....www.lotr.com. Very well done (the musical that is...the website is nice too).
Anyway, I've decided it's time to reread the books. I seemed to have missed feb. and The Hobbit discussion, but I was planning to go out and find FOTR tomorrow to start reading again (left my copy back in the states) and logged into Barnes and Noble (which they don't have in London...sad!), and saw this group. I hope I'm able to join in on the discussions! It will be nice to stay connected to my "favorite" book store back in the states this way.:womanvery-happy:





Hi EmeraldTear07. What an interesting idea. A musical of LOTR. I like it! Sure they must have abridged this down to bear minimum but it looks like it was quite a musical and visual experience. Can you tell us more about it?

As far as reading is concerned you are just on time. We are all the way up to Chapter 2 of the Fellowship of the Ring and speeding right along. :smileyvery-happy:

You can also join the Hobbit discussion if you wish. That is still going on. Some members are still working on the Trolls of chapter 2. We go for quality discussions rather than speed here. :smileywink:
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