Well, first, I would like to both thank Audible for finally making this available, and alternately curse them for doing so at a time when they're making so many other great books available (Gardens of the Moon, for one). Needless to say, all others will have to wait until I'm done listening to these.
Second, I have to admit that I've just started listening to it, but so far, I must say that I'm entirely impressed by Mr. Inglis' reading. Nice, clear voice, good differentiation of the different characters.
Third, like many others, I read "The Hobbit" and this trilogy as a pre-teenager about 30 years ago. I loved it. I honestly don't think you can consider yourself a fantasy fan if you haven't read these books. They are, simply put, amazing. I eagerly watched all the movies and was very impressed with those as well. Except for "The Hobbit", of course. Now, I finally have a chance to listen to them in audio, and unabridged!
Again, thank you Audible... now, if you could just get "Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn" by Tad Williams, I'd be even happier!
I'm going to review the reading as opposed to the writing.
I thought the reader did a good job, except for the singing. I appreciated that he sang the songs that Tolkien wrote, but I'm curious where the melodies came from. I wasn't a big fan of them. To be honest, the songs in the hobbit cartoon and the lord of the rings movies was infinitely better. When this reader sang, it just made my eyes roll.
Also, the reader had a hard time creating a different "voice" for each character. The characters seemed very similar. That could also be the fault of Tolkien.
People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.
The last time I "read" The Fellowship of the Ring, I read it out loud to my daughter at bed time. Took several months, reading a handful of pages each night. That was about a dozen years ago. Prior to that, I read the entire trilogy about a dozen times, but that was back in my youth in the 60s and 70s, when I re-read it every summer (yeah, yeah, go ahead and mock me, I'd do the same). So no surprise that I jumped at listening to the audiobook when I got the chance.
So who are you and what can I tell you about Tolkien's classic fantasy trilogy? Chances are, you already know all about The Lord of the Rings, in which case there's not much I can add other than critique the narration (see below). If you've never heard of LOTR, you've either been living under a rock for the past half century, or you're too young to read, in which case, all I can say is, READ IT (as soon as you can get out from under your rock, or when you're old enough to read big boy books).
Perhaps you've seen the movie trilogy and are wondering whether it's worth your time to read (listen to) the books, no small consideration given the total length of The Hobbit and LOTR tops 65 hours. I would strongly recommend that you at least read The Fellowship. I always loved it the best because it takes place at more of a, uh, I can't say human level because they're mostly not human, but you get more of a feel for individual characters and specific settings, the remaining books operating on a more epic scale.
And a lot of that character development and scene/mood setting occurs in passages (entire chapters, actually) left out of the movie. The film version of The Hobbit, an as yet unfinished trilogy, contains far more material than the book (including some sections originally in The Fellowship). The movie versions of The Two Towers and The Return of the King may be structured in a different manner than the books, but the events are pretty much all there.
By contrast, there are substantial portions of The Fellowship completely omitted by the movie, including four consecutive chapters in Book 1 along with most of a fifth -- when the hobbits approach Buckland with the Black Riders in pursuit, meet Old Man Willow and Tom Bombadil in the Old Forest, and encounter the barrow-wight on the Barrow Downs. To keep the movie length manageable, it was determined that these adventures did not further the story of the ring. I don't disagree with the decision, despite my disappointment especially with the loss of the magical Tom Bombadil and his companion Goldberry.
Here then is your main reason to read The Fellowship if you've only seen the movie. There are also major scenes omitted from the fellowship's journey through Moria, Lothlorien, and down the Anduin from Book 2, as well as major passages of lore from The Council of Elrond and other similar discussions. And then there are the many Tolkien songs sung a capella by narrator Rob Inglis to tunes he and his producer wrote. Personally, I found the songs tedious and the recording (done a quarter century ago) crude by today's audiobook standards, so I took a star off Inglis's otherwise legendary recitation.
For Tolkien fans looking for a new way to enjoy his best work, or for others willing or desiring to see what the fuss is all about, this audiobook is a perfect way to follow the adventures of Frodo and his hobbit friends as they make their way across the Shire, through the Old Forest to Bree, on to the magical valley of Rivendell, into the mines of Moria and the enchanated woodland of Lothlorien, and down the Great River toward Gondor and Mordor, along the way meeting Tolkien's version of wizards, elves, dwarves, trolls, wraiths, wights, orcs, balrogs, wargs, and all sorts of men, strange, heroic, devious, and jolly.
In several spots you can hear background noises: talking mostly. Like someone is in the next room talking on the phone. Very distracting and pulled me completely out of the story.
I wouldn't go looking for books that he's narrated.
I'm disappointed in Audible for allowing a 2nd rate recording of such a venerable title as LOTR.
This is by far the most exciting, most literate, most frightening, most elevating, most imaginative, most humane story ever written.If you have only seen the film, well, too bad. All that remains to be said is that Rob Inglis' narration is masterful.If you have only one credit, use it here.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
I can't help having flashbacks to the movie as I read "The Fellowship of the Ring." The audio book is so much better then the film. I cannot get enough with the singing of the reader. It's a bit annoying, but it's apart of the tale that I enjoy. I can't wait to finish off the series and share the trilogy to my family for many years to come. It's one of those books that never get dated. After reading The Hobbit and The Fellowship of the Ring, I'm really looking forward to the next two additions in the trilogy to find out what they missed in the movies.
It is a timeless classic. So much more here than the movies (still great) can get into. You get such deeper insight into the characters. It can be a bit more whimsical than the movies, if that is your only exposure to this story. Great narrator.
Sam is still the unsung hero.
There are a lot of different characters in this book, and Inglis does a great job at keeping them separate.
There were times that it drug a little long, but over all it was great.
Worth the credit.
One of my favourite books read the way I'd like to be able to. Rob Inglis does this story the justice it deserves. This book is the first of three, you'll want the other two.
Take out the songs or make it possible to easily skip them. There's just too many. I'm addressing the whole Lord of the Rings, not just Fellowship.
Come on, this is a classic that generations have grown to love. Picking out even ten scenes would be hard. ok, ok, Frodo encountering the Nazgul on Weathertop .
effing horrible singer
I don't think anyone will every be able to make this into a movie ;) - It would be really interesting if someone would really do this someday. Take the actual book, realizing that it is mostly made of quiet moments and inner turmoil, rather than 20 minute battle scenes. I think it would lend itself to a mini-series format more than the movie and would take several seasons. Would like to see it done at a rate of one chapter per episode. Take your time with it, get to know the world of middle-earth.
I really liked this book but I found parts distracting because I hear some background noise and even talking in the background in a few parts. In Chapter 3 about 1/3 of the way through there is someone talking in the background - like on the telephone. I was surprised that no one has edited that out. Maybe they can't or no one knew about it. Don't the editors listen to the whole story before they publish? I am disappointed because when you purchase an audible book you expect superior production.
When you get to Chapter 7 of the second book - the Two Towers - you will hear someone talking and a BLENDER going in the background. What is going on???!! Audible - get a new person in your quality control department!