Archive for the 'Tolkien' Category

LMB Book Club: The Hobbit ch. 4, “Over Hill and Under Hill”

Saturday morning, the Book Club ventured into the Misty Mountains to discuss chapter 4, “Over Hill and Under Hill.” It was chilly up there with Bilbo’s old traveling companion Gloin, but at least we had as warm a fire as even Kili or Fili could have made!

Gaiagil, Lindorieh, Fuinador and Lennidhren gathered round the fire, but we also had several kinmates sending their thoughts to us from afar via the /lmbbookclub chat channel. Nathegar, Halcaric, Isilwren, and maybe one or two others that I didn’t catch, were there in spirit if not in person!

Our main topic of discussion was GOBLINS! We talked about whether goblins and orcs are different things (as in game) or the same (as is the general impression in Tolkien’s writings, though he tends to call them goblins in The Hobbit and orcs in LOTR…). We talked about what kind of culture/society they have, and how they were able to recognize Glamdring and Orcrist – whether that implies that they have long lives like the Elves or whether it was information passed down by tradition. We discussed whether passing down such traditions implies an ability to read and write, and whether they would recognize the Elven runes on the swords. Along with literacy, we wondered if goblins have art – we allowed that they do have songs, at least, as we see such a fine example in this chapter! Perhaps they also have visual arts by which the swords had been represented for future goblin generations. As for their song, we did not get to hear it at this meeting, but Lindorieh and Gaiagil are working on an interpretaion to be shared at Ales and Tales. (And if anyone has a spare goblin mask…let them know. 🙂 )

We also talked about Gandalf’s role in the story. He comes close to being a deus ex machina…er, Maia Ex Machina?…but as the narrator says in my favorite quote from this chapter, “Gandalf thought of most things; and though he could not do everything, he could do a great deal for friends in a tight corner.” Of course it’s when the wizard is off on other business in later chapters (as well as earlier with the trolls) that we get to see Bilbo and the dwarves stretched to greater feats of heroics themselves. That is the way of a mentor or wizard! You can’t have them doing everything for the heroes.

For the rest…well, I remembered to log the chat this week. So perhaps I shall add it to this post: once I have taken out all the emotes, regional/advice chat, kinchat etc. 🙂 It’s a bit overwhelming as is.

No meeting next week: Be merry with your families for Christmas! I for one shall be traveling and not sure if I can get in game that weekend anyway, so we will have our next meeting the weekend of New Year’s. As always, watch the LMB forums for the chapter 5 discussion thread and meeting time poll.

Signing off with Gaiagil’s suggestion of a Book Club farewell phrase: “Not for the last time!”

LMB Book Club: The Hobbit Ch. 3, A Short Rest

This week the Book Club had a restful meeting in the lovely Hall of Fire as we discussed Bilbo and company’s stay in Rivendell in chapter 3. Six attended: Five from the Lonely Mountain Band – Phaenethdre, Lindorieh, Gaiagil, Tinki, and Lennidhren, plus a friend from the Council of the Secret Fire, Zogskald. Oh, and we had a special guest: Master Bilbo Baggins, the Author himself, now a resident of the Last Homely House, joined us in the Hall of Fire to hear our talk about his first visit to that house!

We discussed the mystery of the map’s moon-letters and what they imply about the importance of Fate or Serendipity in this book. We talked about the restorative powers of Rivendell and how they seemed to be connected to the merry songs of the elves there. And most of all, we discussed this first glimpse of the elves and how unusually jolly they are at their first appearance – to the point that one might understand why the dwarves think them foolish! We talked about how different elves seem in LOTR, so serious and grim, and discussed why this might be. Phaenethdre also pointed out how his people in Mirkwood, even in The Hobbit, are quite more perilous to Bilbo’s group than the laughing Rivendell elves. In the end we realized that elves have greater depth than most people tend to be aware of, that they have both merry and solemn aspects. Why, even Galadriel sings “Tra-lally” as she sweeps out her flet, or so her cousin Gaiagil reported to us! We can only assume that Elrond too sings merrily when he is cleaning out the Hall of Fire.

We did not, however, give in to the urge to jump up and start sweeping that Hall when Gaiagil and Lindorieh performed a lively rendition of the “Tra-la-la-lally” song for us…

We did dance a bit though. 🙂 Then Gaiagil read aloud the passage right after the elves’ tra-lally song, and Lennidhren recited another “Elvish Song in Rivendell” from Tolkien’s unpublished manuscripts, as found in The Annotated Hobbit:

Come home, come home, ye merry folk!
The sun is sinking, and the oak
In gloom has wrapped his feet.
Come home! The shades of evening loom
Beneath the hills, and palely bloom
Night-flowers white and sweet.

Come home! The birds have fled the dark,
And in the sky with silver spark
The early stars now spring.
Come home! The bats begin to flit,
And by the hearth ’tis time to sit.
Come home, come home and sing!

Sing merrily, sing merrily, sing all together!
Let the song go! Let the sound ring!
The moon with his light, the bird with his feather:
Let the moon sail, let the bird wing!
The flower with her honey, the tree with his weather:
Let the flower blow, let the tree swing!
Sing merrily, sing merrily, sing all together!

And that wraps up this week in the Book Club. On to chapter 4 for next week!

LMB Book Club: The Hobbit, Chapter 2 – Roast Mutton

The Lonely Mountain Band Book Club met last night at the Green Dragon Inn, where we enjoyed (using the term loosely) some Mint ‘n’ Mutton Muffins (that term may need to be used loosely too) in honor of chapter two of the book – Roast Mutton!

Sam (Renamedsa pending, er, rename), Deithrian, Fastjarfi, Gaiagil, Byrdie, Fuinador, and Lennidhren had a great discussion of this chapter, in which adventure shows its scary – but still funny – side and Bilbo, scouting out three very alarming trolls, first tries his hand at a bit of burglary. We talked of magic, landscape, dwarves vs. hobbits, and much more.

At the end we had a new treat, as Gaiagil organized us into a band to try our hands at playing “Troll Sat Alone” – many thanks to Keptwise for providing us with a link to abc files and lyrics for it! It was Lennidhren’s first time playing in a band like so (and I think the same was true for others in our group…) and so very exciting! We hope to reconvene the book club group and play the song for Ales and Tales tonight, in fact. *tweetles on the clarinet she borrowed from Gaiagil…*

We finished with readalouds; Gaiagil read a passage from Bilbo’s encounter with the trolls, I read the part where he arrives at the Green Dragon Inn without his money, walking stick, or hat; and Sam read the ending passage with Gandalf being, as Pippin would put it years later, “close.” Sam does great voices; we should’ve had him read the trolls too… 😉

LMB Book Club: The Hobbit, Chapter 1: An Unexpected Party

The book club met at Bag End last night to discuss chapter 1, “An Unexpected Party”. We had a wonderful discussion with Kaetilly, Muiran, Gaiagil, Lindorieh, and Lennidhren.

Continue reading ‘LMB Book Club: The Hobbit, Chapter 1: An Unexpected Party’

A Not Unexpected Party: The LMB Book Club’s First Meeting

The Lonely Mountain Band’s new Tolkien Book Club gathered for the first time today at Bag End. Lennidhren hosted the meeting (with cookies!) and guests included Astleigh, Byrdie, Gaiagil, Lindorieh, Samwisse (Godwineson) and a friend from the Bounders of the Shire, Nelco.

We launched our read-along of The Hobbit by establishing a reading and discussion plan, as detailed here on the LMB forums.

Bag End’s library made a wonderful spot for a book discussion. We admired the paintings of Smaug the Dragon, the forest Mirkwood, and Bilbo’s map of Eriador. And we surmised that the book-covered writing desk in the corner must be where the old Hobbit penned the very story we are about to read!

After we established the reading schedule, Samwisse started us off by reading aloud the first paragraph of the chapter. What a delightful performance!

So, grab a copy of The Hobbit and The Silmarillion and join us this week as we begin our literary travels! Watch for the first discussion post Wednesday in the Tolkien category of these forums.

Blogger Gatherings!

Click the button for reports from the 2010 Spring Blogger Gathering, hosted by Linett of Nimrodel!

Berethron of Brandywine hosted the 2010 Summer Blogmoot.

The Winter Blogmoot was held on December 4, 9 p.m. EST at the home of Telwen of Silverlode.

Next up: The Spring Blogmoot of 2011 shall return to Nimrodel with Tuiliel (Whart, aka user-1027520) hosting! Linett is looking forward to another local moot!



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