No. 118 (essentialsaltes) wrote,
No. 118

Smith of Wootton Major / Farmer Giles of Ham, by JRRT

 I confess I had not read these before, despite being a humongous fan of LotR. I think something about the cover art and the focus on, well, a farmer, put me off. Magic rings and orcs good, farming and smithing not so interesting. So I blame Tolkien's title.

If I renamed it Farmer Giles who Almost Accidentally Does Something Useful (and Lives to Regret the Imposition it Creates Upon his Life) Yet Receives a Magic Sword and Quickly Runs out of Fucks to Give About Anyone or Anything (of Ham), I might have cracked it open before now.

'Smith' is a fairy story, somewhat somber but satisfactory. And well, you can see what I thought of Farmer Giles. Both are more in the form of European folk-tales (as opposed to stories of Middle Earth) but they contain little elements here and there that disclose some of Tolkien's preoccupations.
Tags: book, tolkien

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