Quote Of The Day

From Clive James:

“I still haven’t forgiven CS Lewis for going on all those long walks with JRR Tolkien and failing to strangle him, thus to save us from hundreds of pages dripping with the wizardly wisdom of Gandalf and from the kind of movie in which Orlando Bloom defiantly flexes his delicate jaw at thousands of computer-generated orcs. In fact it would have been ever better if CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien could have strangled each other, so that we could also have been saved from the Chronicles of Narnia.”

Amen to all that.


  1. Back in the 70’s I tried to read the hobbit and gave up due to the nonsense overload.
    Fast forward 30 years.
    I never even attempted any interaction in any of the more recent hobbit nonsense and if it comes up in conversation I leave the room.
    The whole world is turning into one giant comic book in all ways.

    1. I agree. I was in college, and my brother who was still in HS had apparently read the Hobbit and suggested I read it. I seem to recall that I got to page 17 before OD’ing on nonsense names, but I’m not sure after 45 years. I did read a book length literary analysis of the Hobbit, though. Now THAT was interesting. It also explained the silliness which my brother explained by saying it was because the book was intended for Children.
      BTW, did you know that after ol’ Tokin finished the LOTR trilogy he went back and rewrote the Hobbit so it worked properly as a prequel? Since the original version didn’t sell as well as the trilogy, those First Edition Hobbit books are worth a good amount now. My parents never bought anything that was collectible.

      1. Best not read any books set in a truly foreign culture, such ad 19th Century Africa, or Malaysia, etc., since you’ll be OD’ing on nonsense names just as quickly.

    1. Yeah, I don’t get that either, Toby.

      I happen to like “The Hobbit and “LotR”, but free American citizens are allowed to have different tastes than mine.

      1. Count me in. I enjoyed reading them as an early teen, and was impressed at how well the movies kept to the spirit of them.

        Quite good western civ defending against the encroaching hordes allegory.

        1. I’ve loved those books and started reading them (both authors) in grade school, and have re-read them (even the Narnia books, along with favored science fiction and fantasy, even those aimed at ‘juveniles’ like Heinlein’s Starship Troopers) many times. Just think how triggering many of them would be to typical sheltered indoctrinated snowflakes in grade school today…

          I think the LOTR movies were decent but didn’t like some of the simplifications. The Hobbit movies had their moments but Jackson was into stupid special effects and gotcha moments by then, which really hurt them.

  2. Had Tolkein strangled Lewis we wouldn’t have been given “The Screwtape Letters” which is better than any of the tripe Tolkein wrote.

  3. Tolkien’s middle earth is magic, that man was brilliant. The movies are entertaining.

    I’m sincerely glad they didn’t attempt the Silmarillion, after the train wreck that was The Hobbit trilogy.

  4. See, I don’t get this. I cam fine with not liking the LOR and Narnia books, I do not like them either. But so? Don’t read them, other people can like stuff I don’t like, it okay. …and vice versatility.

  5. In HS we had a mandatory outside reading program. Various books were assigned point values usually 5, 7 or 10. You had to get 10 points per quarter. The program started out as English teachers putting books of various genres on a list and you took a test or quiz on the book after reading it. The goal was to give students the choice to pick which book they wanted to read rather than stick with the mandatory books in English class. One English teacher liked the swords and sorcery genre, another was a fan of mysteries and another liked Steven King’s writings. It was a great way for students to read different genres and learn that reading can be fun rather than a chore. I liked it because the book list gave all sorts of suggestions for reading material. Eventually teachers in other departments added books to the list as well so you could read something other than fiction.

    As far as CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien go, if you don’t like their writings, pick something else to read. I agree that Tolkien certainly did get wordy.


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