That was my wife and son’s reaction when I read the final line of The Hobbit to them last night. (It was this edition, so we had to stop often to admire the artwork–although I can’t say I was fond of the way the elves were portrayed.)
As family reading time goes, this was a long one, or maybe it just seemed long because I was the only one reading it. Usually we trade chapters between the three of us, but there was no way I was going to ask my dyslexic wife to read all those dwarf names over and over. That would have been hell for her. And since my son is not enthusiastic about reading aloud at the best of times, I gladly took on the task myself.
The only problem: we were watching DVD previews of… something last week (not a good sign, eh?) and the LOTR blue ray was one of them my son was startled to hear Elijah Wood say the name “Gandalf.”
“Didn’t you know?” I said. “The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings are set in the same world. They’re connected.”
“Oh. Let’s read those next.”
And my heart sank. I’m happy that he’s (finally) warming up to fantasy, but there’s no way I can ask my wife to read LOTR aloud, so all the books would be on me and me alone.
Not only that, but much of Fellowship… is freaking dire. I’m sorry; I know there are people out there who lurve the books so much they read them every year or whatever, but too much of the early travel stuff is just tedious. And Bilbo’s birthday party takes forever to get to.
I’m tempted to break the family rule and skip the books in favor of the movies.