I have finally finished this!!! I started it way back in April to participate in the Tolkien Trio Reading Tradition hosted by James at A Tolkienist's Perspective. And yes, it took me six months to read it. I know it's fiction, but most of it read an awful lot like non-fiction. In fact, it reminded me of reading some sections of the Old Testament. Particularly if you've never read the OT before, and you don't know any of the people in the stories or what they're going to do. Then it's lots of strange names and kind of hard to keep everyone straight.
It's also a lot like the OT in that it's a story of creation. It involves angels and fallen angels, under different names, and eventually a kind of flood that changes the form of the earth. Of course, it's a fantasy-based version instead, but you can draw a lot of interesting parallels if you so desire.
I did quite like lots of this -- some of the stories captured me, especially the story of Beren and Luthien, which I at least knew a little about from reading the appendices of The Lord of the Ring. And I felt very sad for Eol, the Dark Elf. I also really enjoyed seeing how everything worked into the story of the One Ring eventually.
Although it took me a long time to read because I kept getting sidetracked by other books, I'm really happy I've read this at last, and I know that the next time I read it, I'll understand it much better and get through it a lot faster.
Particularly Good Bits:
But of bliss and glad life there is little to be said, before it ends; as works fair and wonderful, while still they endure for eyes to see, are their own record, and only when they are in peril or broken for ever do they pass into song (p. 95).
Among the tales of sorrow and of ruin that come down to us from the darkness of those days there are yet some in which amid weeping there is joy and under the shadow of death light that endures (p. 162).
"Many are the strange chances of the world," said Mithrandir, "and help oft shall come from the hands of the weak when the Wise falter" (p. 301).
If This was a Movie, I Would Rate It: PG for some mild violence.
This is my 27th book read and reviewed for The Classics Club.