Coming Up..

Some of you may know, I plan my posts in a notebook. I enjoy the physical aspect of writing, and it helps me plan ahead. I’ve written down a post/essay on ‘Is Sam Gamgee the True Hero of Lord of the Rings?’ Expect it soon, as I’ll be typing it up tomorrow or the day after. Hope you’re having nice lives, and thoughts be with all in H. Sandy’s path.


Making Money (Terry Pratchett) Book Review

Making Money Book Review, Terry Pratchett

Now, I can only apologise for the length of time it took me to read this book. I do try and keep the blog interesting between reviews, but being a book review blog I do sometimes feel guilty over how long it can take me to read a book. Again, apologies for the wait. Best get writing. This is the second Pratchett book in a row I have reviewed, and I didn’t really enjoy this one as much. Pratchett is still a wonderful author, in my opinion.

In Making Money, our old friend Moist von Lipwig is visited by Havelock, Lord Vetinari. Vetinari has an offer. A suggestion. An order. Lipwig, whom is bored of the post office but does not want to admit it, is gently suggested (told to) take over as Master of the Royal Mint at the Ankh Morpork Royal Bank. After sincerely declining the offer, Lipwig finds himself the owner of a dog, whom itself owns 51% of the bank. The makes the dog the chairman, and Lipwig in a difficult place to refuse the post Master of the Royal Mint. Best he gets to work Making Money.. Continue reading

Best Fountain Pen Under…

In this post, I am going to look into the best fountain pens you can buy budgeting at certain different values of money. For the most part, I will be sticking to modern pens. Yes, it is possible to get a very good quality ‘New Old Stock’ vintage pen at less than average price. I, however, am not experienced in that field. Ask the Fountain Pen Network if you’re interested in vintage. Continue reading

How To Write an Essay Comparing Two Books

Writing A Good Comparative Essay

Quite often in English (especially Literature) nowadays, students are being asked to write detailed essays – “controlled assessments” comparing themes in two books. I am quite enjoying writing these How-To’s whilst I am reading books, and I think that they can be beneficial and useful. I know last year I had to write an extended piece on ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘An Inspector Calls’. This post is inspired and based on my work for that. Continue reading

The Hobbit (J.R.R. Tolkien) Book Review

The Hobbit Book Review, J.R.R. Tolkien

The Hobbit. I’ve been looking forward to reviewing this for a while. The Hobbit is one of my favourite books. I think that Lord of the Rings series is a little better, but the Hobbit is a bit lighter and funnier. It’s an easier read all round. It’s also an excellent introduction to the LotR series.

In The Hobbit (as I hope you all know), Mr Bilbo Baggins, a very respectable hobbit around these parts. Until, that is, he is drafted into a most unexpected adventure. To the last Homely House then on, on under mountain and over hill. Over the river and finally to the Lonely Mountain itself, where old Smaug the dragon sleeps on stolen gold.

And what an adventure it is, let me tell you. There’s dragons, there’s Dwarves, there’s elves, there’s shape-shifters, there’s wizards, there’s goblins, there’s giant spiders, and of course one (slightly slimy) Gollum. Seriously, Tolkien has managed to cram in many, many different fantasy races here. As the Dwarves, Gandalf plus one reluctant hobbit trek through their adventure, we see examples of every creatures under the sun. Surprisingly, the plot itself does not feel crowded or rushed. The plot is not intensely fast paced, it takes itself very seriously, and takes its time over the events. The way Tolkien has the company flow through their (mis)adventure(s) is truly magical. Their are intense, exciting times like the mountains, and Mirkwood. There is also relaxed atmospheres where we can relax, and enjoy the literature Tolkien has provided for us, like in Rivendell, Bjorn’s house and Laketown. I think every character gets a moment to shine: Gandalf in the cave, Bilbo in Mirkwood (and elsewhere), Fili throwing the rope and Thorin leaping from the mountain. Tolkien does not make the mistake of becoming betrothed with a character in his plot, and the book feel well spread out between them. The plot of The Hobbit is one I know very well through many a re-read, and it is definitely a favourite.

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The characters in The Hobbit are meticulously crafted to blend across the spectrum of personality. Bilbo, the unexpected and often confused hobbit, Gandalf the wise wizard, Thorin the much-too-important-for-you Dwarf, and Balin the helping hand. Bilbo is the shining beacon though. He stands (metaphorically) tall in his development as a character. At first, he isn’t really sure why he’s part of the adventure (as Gandalf had bustled him out of the door quite early, before he could collect his wits to refuse). As he goes on, he accepts he can play a role in the adventure, having sharp eyes and silent feet. However, when he gets the ring, he sees that he can become a vital part of the adventure. He doesn’t play on this though, and follows his heart humbly through his adventure. Tolkien’s other characters are fun to read about too, especially Gandalf. Gandalf’s dry sense of humour is a gem, I love it. Finally, commendations to Tolkien to thinking up Gollum. I think he was presented very well; it worked well that we don’t really know who or what he is. <!–more–>

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I’d just like to take a moment to compare The Hobbit to Lord of the Rings. What I think very good about the two, is that they work harmoniously together, but also work perfectly as individual novels – the stories do not rely on each other. Indeed, The Hobbit was published before Tolkien had even thought of LotR (fact). The Hobbit is a much easier read than LotR, and I think it’s a great introduction to Tolkien’s style of writing, as it is slightly more classic than many other modern authors.

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The Hobbit is one of my favourite books, just as Tolkien is probably my absolute favourite author. The Hobbit is a wonderful introduction to middle earth, and Tolkien’s writing style is the icing on the cake. You can now buy The Hobbit in a pocket-sized edition. Now, the only other book I can think of being important enough to have a Pocket edition is the bible. The Hobbit is a wonderful piece of literature that I think everyone should have read, so if you haven’t, rectify the situation!

The Hobbit, you say? 10/10. I love this book. It’s perfect in my opinion. I was happy with the ending, the beginning and all of the wonderful events in between.

How To Write A Book Review

Writing A Good Book Review

A lot of people seem to ask, and want to know how to write a good book review. Lots of questions are asked and answered on the internet, like ‘how long’, ‘how many paragraphs’ and ‘what should the paragraphs be on’. As a book review based blog, I think I’m pretty apt to try to answer these questions. A lot of it is personal, but I’ll try to outline at least the basics here.

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Going Postal (Terry Pratchett) Book Review

Going Postal Book Review, Terry Pratchett

Another Pratchett book here. I’m on a bit of a vein really. I’m really liking his writing at the moment, and it’s a whole world of books I haven’t read before: brilliant, eh? This book follows another of the mini-Discworld-series that I spoke of in my Snuff review, and this time it’s Moist Von Lipwig (don’t laugh)(pronounced Lipvig). It’s genuinely surprising how interesting a book about a dilapidated old post office is. Then again, this is Ankh Morpork we’re talking about.

In ‘Going Postal’, ex-conman fraudster Moist Von Lipwig (without any of his aliases) is at the ed of the line. He’s been caught, and he’s sentenced to hang, and hang he does. It isn’t often, though, that guardian angels come in the form of your local city tyrant, one Lord Vetinari. Apparently, Moist has a choice. He can either get the old Postal Service going again, or he can go back to being dead. They seem like quite similar fates. Moist is thrilled at his strike of luck, and accepts the job. Of course, the first thing he does is fetch a horse and bag it out of the city double time. Unfortunately, he is dragged back to the Post Office by his own personal Golem, Mr. Pump. Then things really get tough. Continue reading