Title: Hobbit Lessons: A Map for Life's Unexpected Journeys
Author: Devin Brown
Publisher/Price: Abingdon Press/$8.99 here
Genre: Christianity & Culture/Literary Criticism
Number of pages: 144
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
My thoughts: This is the second book I've reviewed here now about LOTR/The Hobbit. The two can't really be compared though because they are so vastly different. The other one, A Hobbit Journey, was almost twice as long as this one, and not an extremely fun read. On the other hand, this is a short book that is a ton of fun to read. With illustrations throughout, the author points out the wisdom of Tolkien's work in a way that is practical, relevant, and very inspiring. Drawing from Tolkien's religious background, he weaves Scripture through his lessons of Hobbit-sized sense and the deeper wisdom of Gandalf and others. I really enjoyed it. It was pleasantly brief, but managed to deepen my understanding of LOTR and The Hobbit in a way that was both significant and practical. Unlike A Hobbit Journey, which is completely serious and scholarly, Hobbit Lessons is upbeat with a wittiness that seems right at home with the author's goodnatured exploration of the wisdom of Tolkien's world. Because they offer such a good summary of the book itself, here are the titles of the chapters: "When Adventure Comes Knocking, Let It In (Despite The Fact It May Make You Late For Dinner)," "Have Your Friends' Backs (Someone Has Yours),"Be Fond of Waistcoats, Pocket Handkerchiefs, and even Arkenstones (Just Don't Let Them Become Too Precious),"Remember Not All That Is Gold Glitters (In Fact, Life's Real Treasures Are Quite Ordinary Looking)," "Recognize You Are Only a Little Fellow in a Wide World (But Still an Important Part of a Larger Story)," "Find The Enchantment All Around You (Even If You Are Not a Wizard)"
I really enjoyed this book, and if you're a Tolkien fan, but don't want to go super deep into the theology, this is the book for you. It's a lot of fun and very practical for anyone at any stage of life.