What can I say? The story's almost incomparable, so let me switch to commending Rob Inglis' performance. I tend to shy away from dramatizations, but Inglis' delivery is mostly narration. He does just enough variation in delivery to make the characters distinctive without resorting to silly vocal tics. It's masterfully done and a great example of how a good narrator can enhance a book just as easily as a poor one can ruin it.
Addicted to audiobooks & podcasts. 5 Stars=I Loved It, 4 Stars=Enjoyed it Thoroughly, 3=Kinda Good, 2=Bad/Boring, 1=Complete Waste of Credit
I tried to read Tolkien when I was young but it just didn't hold my attention - too many weird names (I hate when I don't know how to pronounce a name in my head) and songs and maps to keep track of. Even though I've seen all the movies (and the animated version of The Hobbit of course), I've always felt left out - I knew that true Tolkien fans had some inner level of cool that I lacked. Now, I am SO glad I missed out as a kid because it made listening to the audio version so much better! The narrator is perfect and of course the writing is superior. I am going to listen to the rest of them and really hope they are as good as The Hobbit.
"Please. Stop. Singing."
Granted, it's very hard to deal with a cast of 14-15 characters, but many of the characters' voices made me want to stop listening altogether. The narrator's default voice for every person other than most of the dwarves is a stuffy, old-fashioned sounding affair. Think of how you would imagine a stereotypical, British, upper-middle class grandfather of the 1940s to sound. Congratulations. You have heard Bilbo, Elrond, Gandalf, the LakeTown Master, and pretty much everyone over 4 feet tall. Thorin gets more of the same, but with an extremely affected, trying-to-be-posh inflection to top it off. However, on the dwarves, the narrator goes to the opposite extreme. Every single dwarf has his own "unique" voice, and most of these are incredibly annoying. Fili and Kili sound like idiots. They speak in a veeeerrrrrryyyy slllloooowwwwww, overly deep voice and mumble through consonants. They sounded, actually, rather like Crabbe and Goyle from Harry Potter. The voice made me think that the author was implying that they were extremely stupid goons.I would have preferred less "personalization" and more "reading what Tolkien actually wrote," as he's pretty good at identifying the speaker. The mixed-up, everyone-is-arguing parts are supposed to be muddled, so it's extremely unnecessary to inject a separate voice for everyone.This became utterly unbearable during the singing portions. In the narrator's defense, it is hard to come up with tunes for Tolkien's stuff, and it is acutely awkward to expect someone to sing a page's worth of unwritten melody, but augh! I had to fast forward through the elf songs. Rather than "elvish" or "merry" or "different but appealing" or anything Tolkien implied, the elvish music is closer to, "stuffy old guy blissed out on something very relaxing and probably illegal." By contrast, the narrator seems to be trying to rush through the dwarf songs, setting them at an overly brisk cadence and singing them as if he wants to get through as quickly as possible and is rather bored of the song. Awful stuff.
No; I liked parts of it, but the songs always made me abandon the story for at least a day or so, and the voices grated on my nerves.
I'm actually a day old tart, filled with maple custard. Perhaps, this reads as a rational introduction to others, and you are deliberately misreading it, because, come on, maple custard.
Wow! WOW! This was so much happier then the other LotR books! And there's so much compacted into the story.
Now I can see why they are making this into three movies, it WILL take that long to go in depth on the battle of five armies, and the necromancer back-story, and so on. And the MUSIC! If you loved the singing dwarves in the movie, then you WILL LOVE Inglis's take on each of the songs Tolkien's written in the Hobbit. His voice is so deep and rich.
I was hopping up and down at work, grinning madly, every time I heard Inglis start singing. Even if you've already read the Hobbit, experiencing it audibly, especially with Inglis's narration, is not something to pass up.
I urge you to listen to this book, you will not regret it!
Audible has changed my life! Dry , itchy eyes were destroying one of my greatest pleasures - reading. Now I am experiencing books again!
If ever a book was meant to be read aloud, it's this one! The storyteller is a tremendously important part of "The Hobbit", and Inglis just does a wonderful job enthralling us all with this adventure.
The tone and significance of this work is very different from that of "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy. As long as you recognize that and accept "The Hobbit" for the children's book it basically is, you will enjoy this version of a classic. And, when it comes to a good tale, there's a child in each of us who will absolutely love it!
1. Not A Prequel--love of god, can we at least separate the literary masterpieces from the mass market movie productions? The Hobbit was written first, whether or not Peter Jackson filmed it last.
2. Finally! Someone does an unabridged audiobook version!
3. It's Tolkien and brilliant.
4. The reading is great, but only one nit-pick: some characters and scenes should be read a little darker and not so upbeat. For example, the songs of the Dwarfs--these should be dark and foreboding, but the way that they're read/sung in this recording makes me think of lawn ornament Gnomes digging in the garden. Minor nit-pick. Overall, a very long awaited and welcome recording! Thanks!
Rob Inglis is the ultimate story teller! Perfect listen by the fire place! With multiple voices he is truly the Lon Chaney of audio! I have been borrowing these at my library for years. Now I can finally have them in my library. I listen to them yearly. Other versions of Tolkien's works by various authors pale compared to Rob Inglis' proper style.
Pleasant voice. Knows when to emphasize!
absolutely. The way Rob reads, allows for no dull moments.
The Hobbit is truly an imaginative force to be reckoned with. It has spawned hordes of imitators in a variety of forms. At it's core it's an adventure story with more heart and character in the first chapter than most accomplish in an entire book. If you consider yourself even the slightest bit a fan of fantasy, then you should give this a listen.
Addicted to books, especially audiobooks. Read lots and prosper!
So happy for The Hobbit to be on to be on audible unabridged. Abridged versions of books are just so wrong it's a crime. The narrator is wonderful. He is very able to carry this story and separate the voices. His tone and the depth of his voice, it's a pleasure to listen to. The story is after all the Hobbit. It's wonderful and fantastical and an adventure that everyone must take at least once in their lives.