"I will take the Ring, though I do not know the way." --Frodo Baggins, at the council of Elrond
"The mere recollection of [this phrase] can move me to tears. I have been reading this tale since I was twelve years old, taking it from my shelf every year or so and returning to Middle-earth . . . . As I get older, and learn more of what sort of person I am, and continue sojourning to the rich soil of the Shire and the high towers of Minas Tirith, I discover that many of my notions of what is good and right and noble in this world have their source in that one." - from the introduction
The Lord of the Rings offers us the essential lessons in living. Here we discover ordinary virtues, like generosity, pity, hospitality and rest. We meet extraordinary people, like Bilbo, Gandalf, Tom Bombadil and Glorfindel. We learn about the roots of destruction in pride and betrayal. And we find the ingredients for success, such as community and sacrifice.
Each of us-even the most simple-is called to a journey. We may be asked to leave behind everything we have grown dependent on. And when this is the case, the tale of Frodo and his friends offers hope that we will be given the strength and the help we need to overcome every obstacle and defeat every foe. This book will help you find the way.
Mark Eddy Smith is the author of Tolkien’s Ordinary Virtues, Aslan’s Call and the novel Children of the Air. He’s the volunteer fiction editor for WordFarm Press and pays the bills with freelance graphic design jobs (and occasionally with royalty payments). He lives on the family homestead in New Hampshire, where he can be found most Friday nights writing at the bar at Chequer’s Villa.
"Writing in graceful, easy prose, Smith invites us to admire Tolkien not only for the epic scope of his imagination but also for the depth of his spiritual insight." David C. Downing, professor of English at Elizabethtown College and author of Planets in Peril and The Most Reluctant Convert
"Mark Eddy Smith's gentle account of Tolkien's ordinary virtues gets to the very quick of the great storyteller's vision." Colin Duriez, author of Tolkien and the Lord of the Rings and The Inkings Handbook