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The Fellowship of the Ring

Book One in The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
Narrated by: Rob Inglis
Length: 19 hrs and 7 mins
5 out of 5 stars (33,372 ratings)

Regular price: $38.49

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Publisher's Summary

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

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • L. N.
  • New Hampshire
  • 10-10-12

At last - The Definitive Recording!

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.

276 of 295 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Greatest Book, with the finest reading

What made the experience of listening to The Fellowship of the Ring the most enjoyable?

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.

What does Rob Inglis bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

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.)

194 of 212 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A Classic Done Right

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.

57 of 64 people found this review helpful

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Perhaps my favorite narrator ever

Would you listen to The Fellowship of the Ring again? Why?

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.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Fellowship of the Ring?

Surprisingly the songs. I loved that the narrator managed to put into melody the songs on the book and actually sing them.

Which character – as performed by Rob Inglis – was your favorite?

Elrond. Perhaps because of the contrast with the Elrond from the movies. Rob's voice for this character was lighter and melodious.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

If I could, I would, but it's a bit too long for me to listen in one sitting :)

31 of 35 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Rob
  • Dallas
  • 02-26-13

Epic Fantasy's Heritage

I should start off by saying I am a huge fan of epic fantasy. The longer, and more epic, the better. And I believe The Lord of the Rings really gave birth to the genre.

If you are a fan of any fantasy genre, you should read or listen to these books. I hadn't until they were recently released on Audible, and must say I have mixed feelings. It was quite interesting to see some proto-forms of tools modern authors employ frequently, and this gives me better insight into how the modern authors work.

The story, to me, was a bit boring and too full of songs. The narrator does an excellent job singing the songs and reciting the poetry, and overall does a quite good job with the books.

I am glad the series is finally available on Audible so we can see where it all started with ease. I think anybody who enjoys Fantasy Novels should listen to The Lord of the Rings books - just don't expect them to blow you away.

Worth the credits? Absolutely. Worth the time? Probably. Best books ever? Unfortunately, no.

39 of 46 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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Will the poems and songs ever end?! Please, end!

Middle Earth is a fantastic world to get lost in and I loved all the time spent with world-building. What I didn't like is how longwinded the poems are. You have forgotten you are listening to the book, you've become one of the fellowship, then suddenly you realize that Gandolf has been reciting the same sonnet for, what feels like, the last million years. Tolkien must have been a talker because most of his characters can't shut up. It's a wonder that Sauron needed spies because the Fellowship is LOUD!

41 of 49 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Love the story, narration, not so much

If you could sum up The Fellowship of the Ring in three words, what would they be?

Heroic quest epic.

What did you like best about this story?

This has always been one of my favorite stories, from childhood. It's always delightful to reread it.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Rob Inglis?

I don't know who I would prefer, but Rob Inglis is just not working for me. He did The Hobbit. Now I've got three LOR rings with him, and I just don't like his characterizations or the way he emphasizes his sentences. Plus, he's slow. Yes, you can speed it up a bit, but then it's off.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

26 of 31 people found this review helpful

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Audiobook version better than I had hoped

I have read and re-read the LoTR books many times, and this was my first time listening to them as an audiobook. I was prepared to be disappointed but was instead very pleasantly surprised. It seemed to me that the plot moved much faster when listening to the books than when I read them. In any case, these are among my very favorite, if not my favorite, books ever. The story is great, but there is so much more to these books than just a great story. There is a tremendous amount of wisdom that infuses these books. If you’ve read these books, you know what I mean. If you haven’t, you really must read them. Before I finish, I will say that the narrator is excellent. He infuses the different characters with personality and full credit to how he handles all the songs. I found that listening at 1.25x speed was just right.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Dubi
  • New York, NY
  • 10-25-14

One Ring to Rule Them All...

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, a 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.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

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Finally. The Hobbit and LOTR Unabridged on Audible

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!

37 of 46 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-01-17

A classic story wonderfully told

This may be my favourite book, and the narrator is wonderful, even though some of his choices are not as I would have read them, but it's only a minor nitpick. If you've only​ ever seen the movie, do yourself a favour and pick up this audiobook now.