Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Another LOTR Read-Along: The Black Gate Opens (ROTK 5, 10)

Look at that. Done with book five. Ready to start the last book. Wow. Only nine more chapters. Crazy, man.  I'm tempted to just post them all and be done with it, though I doubt I'll have time today for more than 2 or 3 again.  Takes a little while to copy them over and stuff.

Okay, so anyway, this chapter... blech. So depressing. Starts out so sad, with Merry not able to go, watching Pippin follow Aragorn and Gandalf to war, "a small but upright figure among the tall men of Minas Tirith" (p. 865). That image gets me every time -- tiny Pippin, small but stalwart. Oooof.

I love Bergil here, how proud he is of his dad. He says, "the Men of Minas Tirith will never be overcome. And now they have the Lord Elfstone, and Beregond of the Guard too" (p. 866). As if his dad and Aragorn, the two of them make all the difference. So sweet. Truly one of the greatest kids I've read in an adult book.

As the company marches on Mordor, "they walked like men in a hideous dream made true" (p. 868). What a contrast to back when we first got to Rohan, and Eomer thought dreams and legends were coming to life before his eyes. He was so happy then. Poor Eomer. Probably needs a hug, and I'm not there to hug him.

The whole chapter -- and book -- end with such a cheery note, only Pippin isn't able to appreciate what the Eagles coming means, so it's not actually cheery at all. Argh! Frustrating and awful book -- why am I reading this? Again?

Favorite Lines:

Tree and stone, blade and leaf were listening (p. 866).

And out of the gathering mirk the Nazgul came with their cold voices crying words of death; and then all hope was quenched (p. 873).

Discussion Question:

Do you think it would be harder to march off to certain destruction like Pippin, or to be left behind like Merry?

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