Inspired by The Hobbit and begun in 1937, The Lord of the Rings is a trilogy that J.R.R. Tolkien created to provide "the necessary background of history for Elvish tongues". From these academic aspirations was born one of the most popular and imaginative works in English literature.
The Fellowship of the Ring, the first volume in the trilogy, tells of the fateful power of the One Ring. It begins a magnificent tale of adventure that will plunge the members of the Fellowship of the Ring into a perilous quest and set the stage for the ultimate clash between the powers of good and evil.
In this splendid, unabridged audio production of Tolkien's great work, all the inhabitants of a magical universe – hobbits, elves, and wizards – step colorfully into life. Rob Inglis' narration has been praised as a masterpiece of audio.
©1983 Christopher R. Tolkien, Michael H.R.Tolkien, John F.R. Tolkien, and Priscilla M.A.R.Tolkien (P)1990 Recorded Books
There are a number of Lord of the Rings recordings out there, including a superb dramatization by the BBC. But there is only ONE set of unabridged recordings of the trilogy -- from Recorded Books and read by Rob Inglis. For many years, I've treasured the set of these recordings I have on compact disc. But never before now have I been able to find them for audio download -- until now!!! Words cannot express how thrilled I am to listen to the Lord of the Rings on my iPod (and on my Kindle too!) Audible members who have never yet heard the saga read in its entirety, you are in for a very special treat indeed! In a whole new way will you enjoy the story you've read years ago and have seen transformed into the motion pictures. It'll be almost as if you're experiencing the story for the very first time.
Yes, for sure. It was just a pleasure to listen to it. The narrator made it so captivating... Even though the book is of course from The Lord of The Rings series and wouldn't need further reasons to listen to.
Surprisingly the songs. I loved that the narrator managed to put into melody the songs on the book and actually sing them.
Elrond. Perhaps because of the contrast with the Elrond from the movies. Rob's voice for this character was lighter and melodious.
If I could, I would, but it's a bit too long for me to listen in one sitting :)
The audiobook doesn't let you skip or skim the songs (or the whole Tom Bombadil section); the result is that you experience the book as Tolkien intended it.
Rob Inglis's reading is superb on general principles - he distinguishes characters well and interprets them beautifully. But the best surprise is the authenticity and quality of his rendering of Tolkien's many songs. Heroic when that's appropriate; funny or moving or spiritual by turns, this is an effect you can't produce for yourself in a silent reading. (And Tolkien heard and authorized some of Inglis's tunes.)
This book marks the beginning of Frodo the Hobbit's quest to resolve the question of the Ring of Power which hangs over the fate of Middle Earth like a menacing cloud. I read this book over 40 years ago and it has headed up (together with the others in the trilogy) my list of books to be stranded on a desert island with ever since.
Although the fantasy genre predates The Lord of the Rings, it is no exaggeration to say that Tolkien's books inspired the tsunami of fantasy fiction which is with us even today. More than once, I have read some particularly dreadful specimen of the same and thought to myself that J.R.R. Tolkien has a lot to answer for (tongue-in-cheek) but his genius speaks for itself and is recognized today. When I was in college, stating that The Lord of the Rings was a great work of fiction elicited (from my English professors) stares of incomprehension from some and mild contempt from others. As Norman Cantor has remarked, however, it is the reading public that determines whether a work is great or not and by that standard The Lord of the Rings is now a classic.
Rob Inglis is able to do the series full justice. Not only is he a superb narrator, but he can sing which is important in a work with such an emphasis on songs and music (not always the case.. sometimes I've cringed in sympathetic embarrassment as a narrator, competent in other respects, attempted to sing or chant his/her way through a song with dismal results).
In short, you can't go wrong with this series, particularly if you like stories about quests or knightly adventures. There's very little in the way of boy-girl romance however and no sex so readers who like plenty of that in their fiction may want to look elsewhere.
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.
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.
Say something about yourself!
Having listened to the entire series starting with The Hobbit, and continuing through The Lord of the Rings series, it is difficult to review each book only on its own merit, as they are each part of grand story. Truly an example of the sum being greater than its parts.
Bilbo's part in the tale of the one ring is over, and Frodo's begins. There is quite a bit in the books that the films left out, that add so much to the story. Characters that are far older than Sauron, Gandalf and Elrond. They have been largely forgotten by the realms in Middle Earth, but still have their parts to play (for good or ill) in the Fellowship's battle against the forces of Sauron .
Please indulge yourself and experience the complete unabridged performance of the beginning of the LOTR trilogy. Rob Inglis does an admirable job with both the narration and the songs. As tempting as it might be to skip over some of the songs, they do contain nuggets of information that hep to more completely flesh out the storyline.
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!
This is the best! Rob Ingles is excellent. His performance is as if JRR Tolkien was reading it himself.
Enjoyed the entire story and narration.
I have listened to The Hobbitt - also highly recommend,
I focus on fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, science, history, politics and read a lot. I try to review everything I read.
The Lord of the Rings is a true classic and if you have not experienced it (or only experienced the movies) this recording should be a wonderful experience. This recording includes the prefix and appendices (both at the end of the recording), which might be dry for some, but is great for LOTR geeks. Having an unabridged Lord of the Rings on Audible has been long awaited and is terrific. If I had not been exposed to the NPR/Minds-Eye production of this series I would have been pretty happy with the narration. The Minds-Eye production was abridged but was a really excellent performance. Rob Ingles’ narration is very good, and he does particularly well presenting the difficult epic poetry sections, but I did not much like his singing and overall a simple narration can’t compete with the Minds-Eye performances. Nevertheless I was very happy to have this excellent unabridged version. I started out a little unhappy with the narration, but as time went on I just became quite immersed in the story.
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