A Hobbit Journey: Discovering the Enchantment of J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-Earth  -     By: Matthew Dickerson
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A Hobbit Journey: Discovering the Enchantment of J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-Earth

Brazos Press / 2012 / Paperback

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Product Description

The Lord of the Rings trilogy has delighted millions of fans worldwide in both book and movie form. With the theatrical release of the two-part film The Hobbit slated for 2012 and 2013, intensive attention will once again turn to J. R. R. Tolkien's classic works.

In a culture where truth is relative and morality is viewed as old-fashioned, Matthew Dickerson welcomes the chance to view the world through hobbit eyes: we have free will, our choices matter, and living a morally heroic life is possible.

A Hobbit Journey: Discovering the Enchantment of of J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-Earth is an engaging and morally thought-provoking book. A Tolkien expert, Matthew Dickerson shows how a Christian worldview and Christian themes undergird Tolkien's Middle-earth writings and how they are fundamentally important to understanding his vision. This revised and expanded edition of Following Gandalf includes new material on torture, social justice, and the importance of the body.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 272
Vendor: Brazos Press
Publication Date: 2012
Dimensions: 9.00 X 6.00 (inches)
ISBN: 1587433001
ISBN-13: 9781587433009
Availability: Usually ships in 24-48 hours.

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Publisher's Description

The Lord of the Rings trilogy has delighted millions of fans worldwide in book and movie form. With the theatrical release of the two-part film The Hobbit slated for 2012 and 2013, attention will once again turn to J. R. R. Tolkien's classic works. In a culture where truth is relative and morality is viewed as old-fashioned, we welcome the chance to view the world through hobbit eyes: we have free will, our choices matter, and living a morally heroic life is possible.

In this engaging and thought-provoking book, Tolkien expert Matthew Dickerson shows how a Christian worldview and Christian themes undergird Tolkien's Middle-earth writings and how they are fundamentally important to understanding his vision. This revised and expanded edition of Following Gandalf includes new material on torture, social justice, and the importance of the body.

Author Bio

Matthew Dickerson (PhD, Cornell University) is a professor at Middlebury College in Vermont, a writer, and the director of the New England Young Writers' Conference at Bread Loaf. His previous works include From Homer to Harry Potter; The Mind and the Machine; Narnia and the Fields of Arbol: The Environmental Vision of C. S. Lewis; and Ents, Elves, and Eriador: The Environmental Vision of J. R .R. Tolkien.

Endorsements

"What are the costs of military victory? Is mercy sometimes too expensive? Can torture ever be justified? Are there any moral absolutes in a world of competing faiths and cultures? Matt Dickerson's A Hobbit Journey traces these and many other issues through their surprisingly detailed presentation in Tolkien's fiction. If anyone should still doubt Tolkien's applicability and relevance to the twenty-first century, this is the book to put in their hands.
-Thomas Shippey,
author of J. R. R. Tolkien: Author of the Century

A Hobbit Journey instantly engages readers with its combination of scholarly knowledge and love for J. R. R. Tolkien's work. Matthew Dickerson resists imposing his own rigid, limiting thesis and instead interprets the text by simply pointing out to fellow readers what is there. In doing so he illuminates the power of Tolkien's stories to challenge, delight, and transform us.
-Colin Duriez,
author of Tolkien and C. S. Lewis: The Gift of Friendship and J. R. R. Tolkien: The Making of a Legend

Most fantasy novels are like amusement parks--full of familiar sights, sounds, smells, and thrills. But J. R. R. Tolkien's stories, which have inspired legions of imitators, offer much more than amusement. They are countries full of treasure that will go undiscovered and unappreciated unless we learn how to be attentive treasure hunters. Matthew Dickerson writes as one who has spent his summers in the Shire, hiked every trail in Mirkwood Forest, taken counsel from Gandalf, and argued with Gollum and Smaug. It's as though he sharpened the tools of his intellect in deep conversation with Tolkien himself. He will prove to be a thought-provoking guide through Middle-earth whether you're a frequent visitor there or a newcomer ready for the adventure of a lifetime.
-Jeffrey Overstreet,
author of Auralia's Colors and Through a Screen Darkly

"A Hobbit Journey is a grand accomplishment: a thoughtful exploration of the virtues and values that sustain the heartbeat of Tolkien's Middle-earth. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I expect that you will too.
-Diana Pavlac Glyer,
author of The Company They Keep: C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien as Writers in Community

Product Reviews

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  1. theTRu
    Northern, VA
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: male
    3 Stars Out Of 5
    on a Great [Spiritual] Journey with a Hobbit
    February 27, 2013
    theTRu
    Northern, VA
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: male
    Quality: 4
    Value: 3
    Meets Expectations: 2
    RATING 2.75

    (Recommendation depends on circumstances and expectations)

    Dickerson may have gone far beyond the deep end in his explorations of the text. Shrouded in academics and literary criticism, A HOBBIT JOURNEY seeks to excavate meaning from The Hobbit with thorough analysis and complete immersion in the text. The problem with this book is that it takes things more seriously than many people might find healthy. It's a more difficult read, as Dickerson tosses around ten-dollar words and makes this more akin to a collegiate dissertation than a casual discussion.

    This book tackles heavy issues, such as wartime ethics, deep theological aspects of military accomplishments, moral responsibility, and social justice, among others. Now, I'm not saying that these issues aren't addressed, or at least illustrated, in the pages of The Hobbit, but the added weight of over-analysis usurps the whimsy and joy of the text. There is a time and place (and audience) for this book - and it's intricately researched well written - but my instincts lead me to believe that Dickerson would rather invest his time in proverbial lofty towers (or a comfortable Hobbit hole in the Shire) trading philosophies than implementing these lessons in a practical sense. And it's precisely this irony that makes it hard for me to enjoy this book.

    - from TRudATmusic[dot]com[slash]raw 1/8/13
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