First, thanks to Teresa at Shelf Love for hosting The Two Towers this month. She put together a few questions to help in our discussion for the mid-month check in.
1.Where are you in your reading? Are you finding it slow going or is it a quick read?
2.If you’re a rereader, how does this reading compare to past readings? If you’re a first-time reader, how has The Two Towers met—or not met—your expectations? What has surprised you most in your reading?
3.In Book 3, we visit lots of new places and meet lots of new characters. There’s Fangorn and the Ents, the riders of Rohan, Saruman at Isengard. Which are your favorites? Least favorites?
4.Have your opinions of the main characters from Fellowship changed at all in The Two Towers?
5.Are there any scenes that strike you as particularly memorable? Anything you could do without?
6.And the obligatory movie question: If you’ve seen the movie, has it affected your perception of The Two Towers? If so, how?
For some reason, it’s slow going for me. I’m just about done with Book Three but where I had trouble putting the first two books down, I now have trouble picking this one up. I read a chapter or two and put it down and then I get sucked into another book and don’t read it for several days. I hope it’s not Middle Earth fatigue?! No, I think it’s that I’m a one book at a time person and reading only a few chapters throws me off. I enjoy the story when I’m reading, but I think the idea of reading only a bit at a time has been the wrong approach for me and I will be sitting down to finish the book in the next few days.
Update – I moved on to Book Four last night. I unexpectedly got some extra reading time in thanks to the start of the NCAA Mens Basketball Tournament. I came home to see that my husband had The Setup going on which means he had both laptops on the coffee table in front of the TV watching three different basketball games at once. He was quite proud of himself. I never got a chance to post this but instead got to spend some quality time with my book which worked out just fine for me. 🙂
I’m a re-reader and I was surprised to find myself annoyed with Gandalf this time around. He comes and goes, offers some vague advice when he blesses people with his presence, moves on, and comes back when he has the time. He’s like this in the other books as well so I’m not sure why it’s bothering me here. Also, and this has been mentioned by others, the master/servant thing with Frodo and Sam. In past reads, I’ve been able to ignore it for the most part but this time it’s troubling me.
I love the Ents and Fangorn. The Ents are the most amazing creations and I love the way that no one can really describe them and in a way are just as amazed by them as I am. And while I know Fangorn is supposed to be this forbidden place, I always want to know more about it because it sounds so fantastic. As for least favorite, I wasn’t so much interested in Helm’s Deep. I always have trouble reading battle scenes and this one was no different. Although, I did enjoy the battle count going on between Legolas and Gimli. The relationship between the two is one of my absolute favorites in the series.
Other than feeling put out by Gandalf, no, I don’t think I radically changed my opinion of any of the characters.
The scene that I enjoyed most was the chapter Flotsam and Jetsam. I loved Merry and Pippen’s welcome to the group and the reunion of part of the fellowship. I also liked the way you got caught up with this group without having to re-live anything. It all fit together nicely for me. I am finding it odd though that there hasn’t really been any mention of Frodo and Sam by anyone. I know they are dealing with their own problems — battles, orcs, Saruman,etc. — but it seems like no one is even giving them a second thought. I get what Tolkien is doing and why he breaks up the story but it’s odd for me this go round.
Yes, I have seen the movie. Honestly, the battle for Helm’s Deep worked better in the movie for me and the entire time I was reading that chapter that’s all I pictured. I think the sea of orcs vision I had in my head, which is courtesy of the movie, at least gave me something to grasp when reading. I’m looking forward to more of Book Four and catching up with Frodo and Sam. Sam was and is a favorite character of mine and I miss him a bit.
Any thoughts about The Two Towers you’d like to share?
3 thoughts on “Lord of the Rings Read-Along: The Two Towers Progresses, Rather Slowly I Might Add”
Flotsam and Jetsam is a wonderful chapter, especially after all the intensity that comes before.
I normally don’t care to read books a bit at a time, but for some reason, it works well for me on rereads. I’m reading these on my lunch break at work, which is only 45 minutes, and something about that makes me worry less about finishing the book and focus more on enjoying the time. On books I’m reading for the first time, that doesn’t work at all because I want to know what’s going to happen.
Flotsam and Jetsam is one of my favourite chapters too – although it never occurred to me to wonder why no-one mentioned Frodo and Sam until you mentioned it!
Funny that I was never bothered by Helm’s Deep. I’ll likely be thinking about that more closely next read through.