The Lord of the Rings
by J. R. R. Tolkien
When thinking of Christian fiction, The Lord of the Rings isn't the first book most people think of. It is, of course, the most famous fantasy book of all time, and it is held up as a classic in the field of mainstream fantasy. But that doesn't negate its interest for Christian readers, and Tolkien was always an advocate of including a specifically Christian worldview in all of one's work.
In The Lord of the Rings, we have a continuation of the story of the ring that was first brought into the world of the hobbits when it was discovered by Bilbo Baggins on his journeys. At the beginning of the first novel in the series, Fellowship of the Ring, Bilbo passes the ring on to his nephew Frodo, and a massive adventure involving the whole of Middle Earth commences. For the remainder of the three books in the series, we follow Frodo on his quest to destroy the ring. Over the course of the journey, we meet all the strange inhabitants of the lands of Middle Earth.
The Lord of the Rings functions as something of a cult classic amongst fantasy fans. Long before it received more widespread fame (largely via the films directed by Peter Jackson),The Lord of the Rings was central to a certain, rather nerdy, subculture.
Frodo's quest is one that will capture the hearts of many more generations to come. The book is as well-written as one could hope to find, and the story is compelling. The themes of friendship, simplicity, and the lust for power are sure to resonate for a long, long time.
Reviewed by Shelly Bryant © 2010