Written By: JRR Tolkien
Narrated By: Rob Inglis
Publisher: Recorded Books
Duration: 11 Hours 7 Minutes
Summary: Like every other hobbit, Bilbo Baggins likes nothing better than a quiet evening in his snug hole in the ground, dining on a sumptuous dinner in front of a fire. But when a wandering wizard captivates him with tales of the unknown, Bilbo becomes restless. Soon he joins the wizard’s band of homeless dwarves in search of giant spiders, savage wolves, and other dangers. Bilbo quickly tires of the quest for adventure and longs for the security of his familiar home. But before he can return to his life of comfort, he must face the greatest threat of all-a treasure-troving dragon named Smaug. In his fantasy classic, master storyteller J.R.R. Tolkein creates a bewitching world filled with delightful creatures and thrilling dangers. Narrator Rob Inglis will hold listeners of all ages spellbound with his skillful portrayal of hobbits, dwarves, and enchanted beasts… Read more.
I’ve been fascinated with Tolkien’s work since I was in grade school. Over 30 years now! I’ve read the books multiple times and listened to several different recordings. I have to say that this is one of my favorites. Clear voice narration that follows the story without distracting you with unnecessary dramatization. Highly recommend!
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Summary of The Hobbit Audio Book
The Hobbit is a fantasy novel written by acclaimed author J.R. R. Tolkien. The novel was conceived as a prequel to Tolkien’s longer epic trilogy: The Lord of The Rings.
Originally published in 1937, the novel (also known as “There and Back Again”), was well received and received instant popular and critical acclaim.
The story follows the tale of Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit from the tranquil region of the Shire, who goes on an epic quest across the fantastical region of Middle Earth, meeting a wide array of different creatures, including elves, goblins, orcs, dwarves, dragons, and wizards.
The Hobbit audiobook chapter 1 begins with the now infamous opening line:
In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.
This immediately sets the tone of the novel, emphasizing the good-natured and down to earth manner of hobbits, including Bilbo, the primary character, as well as sets the stage for the atrocities Bilbo will witness later on in the book.
As the book opens, Gandalf, a wizard, visits Bilbo to convince to go on an epic journey, and help a group of dwarves reclaim their ancestral treasure from a dragon. While Bilbo is initially somewhat reluctantly, Gandalf and the dwarves ultimately persuade him to go.
The next 8 chapters then depict their journey across vast lands to reach The Lonely Mountain, the dwarves home which was taken by the evil dragon Smaug. Along the way they encounter a number of evil creatures, from wargs to orcs, as well as meet elves, and Tolkien begins to reveal the politics and ominous foreshadowings that hang over Middle Earth, which are taken further in The Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Eventually, the group reaches the Lonely Mountain, and Bilbo is able to steal the Arkenstone, a precious gem powerful enough to lure Smaug out of his lair and into the open, where a human archer kills him through the single weak point in his otherwise impenetrable armor scales.
With Smaug dead, a number of different parties flock to the mountain, in a massive grab for treasure, and the book climaxes with the massive Battle of Five Armies, in which humans, dwarves, and elves fight together to ward off evil Goblins and Wargs.
When the battle ends, Bilbo finally heads back home, only to find his home and possessions are auctioned off, as he has been presumed dead, having been absent so long. He returns to his comfortable, albeit somewhat eccentric life.
Check out a clip below from the world blockbuster premiere of The Hobbit: Battle of Five Armies.