Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Review: The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien

Title: The Two Towers
Series: Lord of the Rings part #2
Author: J.R.R. Tolkein
Source/Format: Purchased; Anniversary Edition
More Details: Fantasy
Publisher/Publication Date: First published on November 11, 1954

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Synopsis from Goodreads...
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them...

Frodo and his Companions of the Ring have been beset by danger during their quest to prevent the Ruling Ring from falling into the hands of the Dark Lord by destroying it in the Cracks of Doom. They have lost the wizard, Gandalf, in a battle in the Mines of Moria. And Boromir, seduced by the power of the Ring, tried to seize it by force. While Frodo and Sam made their escape, the rest of the company was attacked by Orcs. Now they continue the journey alone down the great River Anduin—alone, that is, save for the mysterious creeping figure that follows wherever they go.
Reading The Lord of the Rings has been a marathon so far, but I’m making progress on my reading goal and will be done with it before this year is over. Continuing where I left off, I finally got around to The Two Towers, and so much happened in this part of the story. I wouldn’t say that anything rapidly changed, but it did get there eventually. And by the end of The Two Towers, the story does progress quite a bit. 

The scope of the story has always been broad and complicated, with a timeline that spans across years, weeks, and days at any given time. The Fellowship of the Ring was a much more linear story, going from the early days in the Shire to the end of that part. In The Two Towers, each end of the fellowship had their own undertakings. So it was broken down into two parts, Book Three and Book Four, which were individually dedicated to those aforementioned ends.  

The Lord of the Rings is a well-known story, so I won’t surmise too much about the plot. The Two Towers involved a lot of walking, long conversations, and going places by horseback—as well as eating—yet the story maintained a sense of urgency. For instance, it started right after The Fellowship of the Ring ended, and thus it felt as if the pivotal scene was just continuing instead of starting at a different point. And at times, there was some fast paced action, as well as scenes right out of a horror movie (if you’ve read The Two Towers then you know exactly what I’m referring to).

One aspect I truly enjoy about this story is the friendships. Some of them came up in unexpected places, but the one that stands out the most is between Sam and Frodo. They were in-between a rock and a hard place for much of their page time, and there was no better way to show the loyalty between the two than during tough situations.

The Fellowship of the Ring was the beginning of the war, where the threat of it was only a shadow off in the distance. Whereas The Two Towers was where it really began in earnest, and it was here where some of the most notable battles/incidents took place. 

At the end of the day, there were a lot of aspects about the story that I’m having a great deal of fun with. So I plan on reading part three sometime soon.

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