Spacer Tolkien
  | Asymmetry | Writing | Tolkien |




"It is a fair tale, though it is sad, as are all the tales of Middle-Earth, and yet it may lift up your hearts."

There are all manner of unpleasant topics I could address here this week, but I've been re-reading Tolkien for the first time in a couple of years, and I'd like to rhapsodize instead. The delicate brushstroke capturing of an entire world, the way that world feels so darn lived-in, with all of its pieces precisely in place and as they should be. The fact that his poetry was absolutely wonderful. The way the story expands with perfectly natural grace from the living room at Bag End to the edges of the Shire, to the lands beyond, and ultimately encompassing the whole world, events moving from a simple birthday party to a series of measured climaxes with orchestral precision. The way you don't learn everything there is to know about the people in the story—modern fantasy seldom leaves any corner of a character's psyche unexplored, any interesting nook in their past unexamined. They attain dimension as much through absence as presence, from the things they will not speak of as the tales they willingly recount.

OK, that's probably enough of that. I'm very much looking forward to the end of the school year and having more time to myself to think about beginning to make a dent in the backlog of books I've accumulated.

| Top |


Except where otherwise noted, all material on this site is © 1999 Rebecca J. Stevenson