The Hobbit sets the stage while Lord of the Rings puts it into service to yield a primo in fantasy genre.

Many people consider J R R Tolkien as the father of modern fantasy. I neither support this saying nor want to prove it with this article, but I wish to strongly defend one fact – J R R Tolkien overshadowed many old fantasy writers with The Hobbit & Lord of the Rings. After having read both The Hobbit & LOTR series I must say that he was one of the truly gifted writers. He created a truly mesmerizing world of Middle Earth and sticked-in many queer characters to make it look like a real world. Both The Hobbit & LOTR are best in their own genre. But still when it comes to literature reviews, many people compare them.

In my honest opinion The Hobbit & LOTR can’t be compared because J R R Tolkien wrote The Hobbit considering his own children in mind, so it was more intended towards children fantasy. It is a story of an adventure of Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit to find hidden treasure. On his voyage he finds this powerful and mysterious ring. Lord of the Rings revolves around this one ring only. After The Hobbit became very popular, it’s publishers George Allen & Unwin persuaded Tolkien to produce the sequel. LOTR is the result of this persuasion and popularity of The Hobbit. Lord of the Rings uses the stage set by The Hobbit. LOTR story happens in the amazing world of middle earth where Bilbo Baggins had travelled to find the treasure. LOTR is a sequel to The Hobbit.

The Hobbit, sine it was purposefully written for children, has lesser violence. It is funny and witty. It does have some action but no fierce fight. It is an adventure of Bilbo Baggins and a company of dwarfs told in humorous way. Though it was primarily for children, it amuses young adult too. I liked it and enjoyed each page to the fullest. It introduces reader to the world of Middle Earth.

LOTR is for more matured reader. It has everything a reader expects from a fantasy genre book. It has action, fight, human emotions, treachery, dark world, dark lord and it’s domination over the world. But primarily it revolves around the one ring which Bilbo found in The Hobbit. Instead of comparing which is better, in my honest opinion, you would enjoy LOTR more if you have read The Hobbit first. It is because The Hobbit tells you more about the world of Middle earth, the people of this middle earth and the most interesting race of this world – the hobbits.

Also, since The Hobbit was published in 1937 and LOTR was published in around 1955, we must confess that J R R Tolkien was more matured as a writer in LOTR than The Hobbit. He took almost 12 years to write LOTR while he wrote The Hobbit in hardly a year or two. Also if we go by figures then LOTR is the second most sold book of the history of world. It is not because it is better written than The Hobbit, but primarily because it has been written considering young adult as the target reader.

If I have to compare these two books then I would say that I liked The Hobbit, but I enjoyed LOTR more because I had read The Hobbit prior. I could relate many events from LOTR to The Hobbit. Both these books are awesome and show the gifted nature of J R R Tolkien as a writer. He is an amazing story teller and he produced magnificent work which has become the ABCD of modern fantasy literature. The fame of LOTR series was reverberated by The Sunday Times as – “The English-speaking world is divided into those who have read The Lord of the Rings and those who are going to read them”. This one line itself is more than enough to tell how best the series is.

Posted by: Pravin Patil
Last revised: 24 Apr, 2014 12:08 PM


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