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The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings - suitable for 8 year old?

(21 Posts)
SmoothOperandus Mon 12-Nov-12 14:24:35

I am not familiar with these books but from what little I know, I think they will appeal to DS. He is 8 years old, an extremely good reader, very keen on adventure books. Would these books be suitable for him or are they too violent/sad? Also, is The Hobbit one book and The Lord of the Rings a collection of books? Also, are these originally kids books or are there adaptations for adults/children? TIA

DewDr0p Mon 12-Nov-12 14:30:16

The Hobbit is great for children and as your ds is a good reader I would say he will be fine. My own ds (also 8) has just finished it and loved it. I also read it as a child and it was my abs favourite.

Lord of the Rings is a different matter - it's a trilogy and each book is very long and complicated. To my mind they are much more adult books and I've told ds he needs to be a bit older to read them!

weegiemum Mon 12-Nov-12 14:33:43

I think 8 might be young to read them, but great to be read to. I say this mainly as tolkeins language can be quite old-fashioned. My 12 yo dd1 has just read the Hobbit, but don't think she'd have appreciated it much before now, and she's a good reader.

LOTR is a much, much more adult thing. I read them at 14/15 and I know I didn't really "get" them!

Themumsnot Mon 12-Nov-12 14:34:52

Eight is the ideal age for The Hobbit. The Hobbit was originally written for children, unlike the Lord of the Rings which was written for adults although it is perfectly suitable for children who have the reading stamina to wade through it as it is one long novel divided into three separate volumes. There are no adaptations of either book that I am aware of. I would start your DS on The Hobbit and then maybe wait until he is 10 or 11 for LOTR.

SmoothOperandus Mon 12-Nov-12 14:44:55

You've been most helpful thank you. The Hobbit it is then. There's an overwhelming array of copies on offer though... Would this be a good option to go for?

wilderumpus Mon 12-Nov-12 14:48:56

I read them all when about 7 smile We were read the hobbit out loud at primary school, think I was about 8 then. How lovely, I am so envious of any child reading these books for the first time!

sorry, am not sure what edition to go for. would definitely get LOTR as the three seperate books though so not so daunting and he doesn't HAVE to read them until he is ready, but just having them is lovely.

seeker Mon 12-Nov-12 14:51:03

Does he like this sort of fantasy adventure? My ds is a good reader and loves adventures, but he gets very impatient with fantasy- he only got about a quarter of the way through the Hobbit before giving up in disgust!

SmoothOperandus Mon 12-Nov-12 14:52:39

Good question seeker. I am not entirely sure; he used to love Harry Potter...

seeker Mon 12-Nov-12 14:54:29

Hmm. So did ds. Has he read all the Harry Potters?

GrimmaTheNome Mon 12-Nov-12 14:55:37

Make sure you get one with Tolkein's illustrations (not sure if any others exist) - the maps are essential.

I read DHs childhood copy to DD when she was about 8 - (she wasn't a keen reader then). LOTR she can read for herself in due course - mid-late teen maybe? Its quite interesting that although the characters overlap, the style is quite different -as people have said, The Hobbit is a children's book, LOTR was perhaps the first of the 'young adult fantasy fiction' genre.

SmoothOperandus Mon 12-Nov-12 15:40:50

Yes, ds has read all the Harry Potters. I think he still likes them, just not so much into them for some reason. Also loves Star Wars and that's fantasy, right?

BelfastBloke Mon 12-Nov-12 15:48:26

I can't tell if the version of the Hobbit you are considering has illustrations.

This might be a better edition:

It would be best to get an illustrated edition, as per my link. Tolkien's line-drawing illustrations are ok, if a bit static, but Alan Lee's paintings are more realistic and evocative.

Alan Lee is one of the 2 designers of the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings films. The Hobbit film comes out 14 Dec 2012.

BelfastBloke Mon 12-Nov-12 15:53:16

Sorry; my link is to the Kindle edition.

Maybe this one

GrimmaTheNome Mon 12-Nov-12 15:57:59

Guess its a matter of taste - I've not seen the ones you mention but love the tolkein illustrations like this one. smile

DeWe Tue 13-Nov-12 09:09:18

Dm read The Hobbit to me and my sister when I was 4 and she was 7. I remember loving it. I then read the LoR when I was 6yo (determined to keep up with dsis). It was hard work, but I enjoyed it-and phonics finally clicked half way through grin

I haven't read it since, but I still remember the story pretty well and recently ended up in a discussion with some people who are seriously into it, and was holding my own to a point they didn't believe I'd only read it once (I didn't tell them how long ago)

However my dd1 loved Harry Potter-read it in year 1, but although she read the Hobbit as a reading book in year 4, she didn't particularly enjoy it. Not quite sure why, as she reads a certain amount of fantasy, probably her second choice of reading after spy/adventure types, but just didn't get on with that one.

duchesse Tue 13-Nov-12 09:23:18

DS read them at that sort of age -The Hobbit anyway- he might have been 10 when he read LOTR- and he thoroughly enjoyed them.

wearymum200 Wed 14-Nov-12 22:00:24

Ds1, 6, loved the hobbit. He is into fantasy and swords etc, so perfect for him. He had a crack at lotr, but abandoned it after a couple of chapters, which I totally expected. I also loved hobbit but have never been able to get thru lotr!

SmoothOperandus Thu 15-Nov-12 13:59:48

Thank you all. Would this be a good edition to buy?

BelfastBloke Thu 15-Nov-12 23:15:29

That will be fine. It'll have the line-drawing illustrations drawn by Tolkien. Thus it'll be the way most people have encountered this book for 80 years.

I would buy a book with illustrations by Alan Lee, myself. But ultimately it's not necessary.

I have been showing my 5-year-old daughter the cartoon film of The Hobbit, on YouTube, and telling her the story. The cartoon film isn't bad at all for that age group.

pointythings Mon 19-Nov-12 21:36:20

DD1 will be 12 in January and is loving LOTR - it is her bedtime reading book so half an hour every night, but she does come back to it at weekends. She says she particularly loves the richness of the language - she's very into poetry too - and IMO it's eventful enough to keep the interest of someone who likes adventures.

I've read LOTR about 15 times so we can talk about it in some depth grin.

Startail Mon 19-Nov-12 21:44:09

My 14 DD has just admitted she gave schools 3 in one very small print version back and watched the DVD.

She is dyslexic, but devours twilight and vampire books and has just pinched my kindle to read a free one off yesterday's offer.

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