Lord of the Rings
by J.R.R. Tolkien

Tolkien originally wrote this novel as one book but his publisher wisely broke it into the trilogy we know today. The novel is an icon in the fantasy genre, and is rife with representations of Tolkien's Christianity - from Frodo's battle with the allure of evil the ring represents, Golom's surrender to that same evil, Samwise's loyalty to Frodo and their mission, to Gandalf's temptation by Sauron to join him in his evil plans for the world. All these point to Tolkien's faith and his desire to write a novel where Christian principles and faith "were implied rather than preached."

What makes the novel so interesting is Tolkien created an entire history for this world, and it shows how well he was familiar with everything about the place when he started writing. Like any large novel (at 1,216 pages this definitely qualifies) it has areas where the pace slows, but on the whole it is well written and a great book to read.

If you enjoyed the movies, you should read the books, as Tolkien's writing does so much more than the movies show.

James Shelton
Reviewed by James Shelton