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Thread: Child's book

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Justifiably so, IMO, Tomi. This classification is Tolkiens own fault, though for calling it a "childrens book" because he didn't want to be embarassed by his peers (bunch of stuffed shirts that they were).

I frankly don't think you should call the style of the Hobbit "Childlike." LOTR is extremely hard to get through even for most adults. As a writer, I can tell you that clear and concise writing like in "the HObbit" is a gift. Tolkien lost many readers when he graduated to a more difficult style of writing. Just like Sam, the simple gardener, was invaluable to the quest of the ring, simplicity is often invaluable to writing. I still enjoy the HObbit, which is not writen in the vein of "Harry Potter" which is specifically targeted to children. Tolkien never intended it to be a "childrens book".
Er..but he did. He wrote it for his children. Hence the simple style of writing. A bit like the 'Wind in the Willows', written by K. Graeme for his kids when they were down with measles or chicken pox or whatever.

But does it matter if they classify it as a children's book? It's still fun - they could define it as a book for fetuses if they like, but I'd still like it.
Oh I love this remark about a "book for foetuses"!
Big Smile Smilie Big Smile Smilie Big Smile Smilie (Is this the right icon for loud hearty laugh??? If no - sorry for being
Actually, Hobbit holes such as Bag End are so very similar to homes of animals from
"Wind in the Willows" - I love that book, too. It is also a "child book" but some of
its passages are pure poetry...
Do you remember Mole and Water Rat having a walk on a winter evening and
looking through a window at a sleepy bird in cage?
And besides all that, what's wrong with children's books. I still enjoy an occational romp through 'Where the Wild Things Are'.

And my favorite part of 'The Wind in the Willows' is Mole's Christmas homecoming; he was so sad and miseable; Ratty was so kind and optomistic; and the field mice carolers were so cute.

Yes, that was nice Grondie, although my favourite were all the Toad bits, especially the bit when Badger banned him from ever driving motor cars again. And he promised, but broke his word as soon as they left the room. I adored him! He was my role model when I was a kid. Big Smile Smilie

As for the Hobbit, it was first published in 1937 I think - Chris Tolkien (assuming he's 70-ish now) would have been 3 or 4 then? He's the third son (or child), so the Hobbit would have been written for him or his elder siblings. Besides, it said so in the Hobbit.
Yep, it's a kids book no two ways about it (not that there's anything wrong with liking kid's books when you're all growned up). And the Sil and UT are under Other, because they aren't conventional fiction by any stretch of the imagination, and nor are they non-fiction reference books in the strictest sense so they have to be other.
Btw, my favourite bit from the Win in the Willows is Mole getting lost in the woods, scared the hell outa me Big Smile Smilie and then Badger rescues him and everything's better, fantastic! *wanders off in search of his old books*
Oooh! Forgot about that! Must find that book again. I love Badger stern & cross & proper. A bit like my husband. Big Smile Smilie
Badger?? Badger? We don't need no stinking Badgers!
Everybody needs a badger type in their lives; someone who is stable, who knows where his towel is, who you can talk to and who actually listens to what you have to say, and whose advice when they finally come to give it is worth more than the powder to blow it up. That is the kind of badger we are talking about. That is the kind of badger that Kenneth Grahame wrote about, at least as seen through Mole's and my eyes. Smile Smilie
Why d'you think I give out cuddly badgers? Smile Smilie
That was beautiful, Grondie. *sniff* I have to find my Wind In the Willows copy now. Smile Smilie

True, Plastic - unlesss it's the death ninja badgers...*shiver*
My poor ninja badgers, we'll not see their like again I think. *sniff* Sad Smilie
The Hobbit ain't a kiddies book. I read the bit with Gollum to this snotty little kid I was baby sitting and it gave him nightmares. Hah! That'll teach the little b*gger to get play-dough in my hair Big Smile Smilie
BTW ninja badgers are kinda cool. Smile Smilie
What a little girly wet blouse! Big Smile Smilie
Unfortunately the Badgers were sat on by a fictitious character some time ago, and so are no more. However, I found a new strain of Jedi Badgers who take part regularly in my good friend Oblivion's Mutant League games, which is pretty cool.
the Hobbit is definitely a kid's book...but that's not at all a bad thing...'kid's book' just means that kids are able to understand it, not that it's only for little kids.
God, and I thought it was just me going mad again! Smile Smilie
No, really, I can't see now why they call it a child's book, but I still think it deserves a better title. My nephew tried reading it, and he didn't understand it. (he's 10 and reads HP all the time).
The Hobbit certainly isn't a child's book, because it is written quite hard for kids to read, because I don't think a child will be able to read the chapter 'Riddles in the dark' very well, they just don't understand it!!!!
Luinthul’: Welcome to the Forum. Smile Smilie

I think it all depends on the sophistication of the child. Sad to say, some grownups don't get the Hobbit or any of Tolkien's other great works. All who do, children and grownups alike, are far better for it, IMHO. Cool Smilie
Ah, I think I finally got the sense of those letters: IMHO. Would they mean: In My Humble Opinion? Been wondering about that for weeks! Big Smile Smilie

Yeah, everything depends on the age of the child. I mean, if you're twelve, then surely you'll get the idea of those riddles.
Exploding Head Smilie Child's book indeed! I am in rage! I do not understand why such loathing to these two words? There is nothing wrong with children and books writen for children. Many of my favorite books are written for children (not that I don't read anything else).
I read Hobbit in 1991 when I was 7 and understood it quite well, thank you very much.
As for Hobbit as child's book that is just a mere clasification, so do not worry yourself to much, Tom.
Its both a childs book and an adults book. Its written in simple enough language for kids to read (I read it fine when I was 10) and can be read as a stand alone story therefore classified as a kids book . As an adults book it acts as an introduction into LOTR's giving some more background to the events in LOTR's
Of course its a childs book. Tolkien said so himself, but it can also be enjoyed equally well by adults.
The Hobbit is definately not for little kids. I tried reading it to mine, but the language was far too sophisticated.

I would recommend it to 10 year olds and up, although I gave a copy to my nephew for his 10th birthday (after he had enjoyed Harry Potter) and he found it a little dificult in comparison. Still, I hold out hope for the boy's education. He loved the LOTR movie. No nightmares as far as I know. Wink Smilie

[Edited on 17/7/2002 by Allyssa]
My nephew even got scared when seeing the HP movie, so I didn't send him to see FOTR. Smoke Smilie

Compared to HP, Tolkien is a bit more difficult indeed. I suppose that was the problem with my nephew as well... Big Smile Smilie And I'm with you now, Cirdan. I think the Hobbit is an adult's book that is fit for children too or the other way round if you like it better that way.
The last posting to this thread was a little over a month ago, so I don't know if anyone will see it. However, I have only just found this website in the last week. I am still exploring it.

The Hobbit was written for Tolkien's children. Yes. In his mind, it was a child's book. However, the sophistication of language has deteriorated a lot since the 1930's. Some people these days have a more difficult time understanding Tolkien's style. Things that were common knowledge then, is now obscure trivia. There are places where education just keeps getting better and better, but others where it just gets worse. When Tolkien wrote The Hobbit, it was for children and they understood it. Now, we have to be careful about when to let a child read it. Because it is more difficult than the Harry Potter books, and it does have some scary parts. However, if a parent takes the time to sit down, read it with their child and explain the things they don't understand, they will get a lot more out of it. It will also encourage the child to remember good times with the parent, later. What a wonderful way to make a memory, exploring Tolkien's world together. It will also encourage the child to read on his/her own later. Therefore, The Hobbit is both a child's book and an adult’s book.

All my posts are so long. Sorry if I am too long winded. I hope I don't bore anyone too badly.

[Edited on 4/7/2003 by MelliotSandybanks]
All my post are sooo long. Sorry if I am too long winded. I hope I don't bore anyone too badly.
Your posts are just the right length; they get your point across without rambling or repeating. And besides, most of us here on the forum have an attention span longer than two minutes, so length of anyone's posts has yet to become a problem. Animated Wink Smilie
Hi MelliotSandybanks,
Your posts aren’t too long at all, in fact, I rather enjoy them. The literacy skills of our children would appear to be somewhat inferior to those of Tolkien’s day, which explains the ongoing controversy as to whether The Hobbit is a child’s book. At the very least, it was originally intended to be. I believe your analysis to be correct and I can only hope the postBody gets out there that we have to do something to reverse the situation. You are a mother after my own heart, one who takes time to read with her child. Read Smilie
Thank you very much Rednell. I truly appreciate the kind comments, a great deal. It is easier for me to read to Robbie, than it is for other parents. I am a stay at home mom, we home school and my husband (Matthew) works nights and Robbie is an only child.

Parents with more children have to divide there time so much that they forget to read to them. My sister has three children all-younger than Robbie, and she spend no time with them at all. It is awful and her kids reflect it. They are sweet on a one on one basis, but are very unruly (SP?) and talk back and don't listen and can just ignore you. It is awful. Robbie is only 11 months older than the oldest and he does not like to go over there at all. That is sad when a child does not want to be around his own cousins.

I believe that part of the problem is My Sis does not read to them. It would not matter what she read as long as she did it.

However, this in now off topic, again I guess. Sorry folks

[Edited on 4/7/2003 by MelliotSandybanks]
And besides, most of us here on the forum have an attention span longer than two minutes, so length of anyone's posts has yet to become a problem.

Thank you. It is nice to know that. My best friend has an attention span of 30 seconds or so. It gets very frustrating, but yet we are still friends. go figure Rolling Eyes Smilie

(From the Skwerl with the attention span of a Goldfish, it's not my fault, I'm a gen-Xer who watched too much TV, I blame society...)

(Actually, I do read all your posts Meliot, and I've found them to be very eloquent and just the right length, keep on posting)
Thank you Plastic. That was very nice of you. I do appreciate it.
No worries Smile Smilie Doesn't happen very often, if I'm being nice, I must be losing my touch... Wink Smilie
There he goes again. Responsible, and now nice! What's going on?

*Ungoliant faints*
Must...get...some coffee....& fags....

Btw, he's right though Mel, your posts make nice reading. Cool Smilie
I'm sorry Golly, I'm not on form right now, just wait, I'll be back to normal soon, I'm just lulling all the new members into a false sense of security before I strike Smoke Smilie
But seriously though Plastic, you're never really mean to anyone. Just a real teddybear deep down, aren't you.
Puppy Smilie

Ok I know that's a puppy. Couldn't find a bear smiley.

[Edited on 29/8/2002 by Ungoliant]
Ssssssshhhhhh! Don't tell anyone, I'm still trying to look cool in front of the other people Golly. Wink Smilie
Aaahhhh! Wink Smilie
I'm just lulling all the new members into a false sense of security before I strike

Dude, that would almost scare me, if I had not gone back and already read a whole bunch of old threads. And with you having over 2000 posts, there are a lot of things you have written. Like Ungoliant said:
Just a real teddybear deep down

Pixie Smilie

[Edited on 31/8/2002 by MelliotSandybanks]
Man, I've got over 2000 now? When the hell did that happen? Okay, so maybe I'm quite nice really, but you should see the old ezboard forum, I wasn't then... well maybe a bit....
It was either The Plastic Squirrel or me, Shaking Head Smilie
who chased away then moderator, One_white_tree. Got The Blues Smilie

Very Big Grin Smilie
Very poetic Grondy
Man, I've got over 2000 now?

I'm still trying to break 1000. Don't think I'll ever get there. *discouraged* Sad Smilie

Mel, I used to play 'librarian' with my mom when I was a kid. She'd come into my playroom/mini-library, and borrow my books. We even made the library cards for each book, and she 'borrowed' an old library stamp from her school (she's an English & Maths teacher) so that I could stamp happily on the cards. My favourite moment would be when she'd start reading out loudly to herself, and I got to say, "SHHHH! Quiet in the library, maam!"

My point is that yeah, spend time with the kids. Don't even have to read to them - as long as your games with them involved books, they'd eventually cultivate an interest in reading. My parents always loved and respected books. I wanted to be like them, and so I read anything within reach the moment I was able to.

Making a library sounds like a lot of fun. I keep saying that we are going to do it too. Unfortunately, we have so many books, and no place to put them. We have crates of books still in the garage, and about seven or eight bookcases in the house. I am very fortunate that Robbie likes to read. He reads on his own a lot and then we have a reading time together. He also reads over my shoulder when I am in here too. (Sometimes) We also have a family game night on Saturdays and sometimes on Sunday. Believe it or not we have even stared playing AD&D. (My friends at church would have a fit.) However, his father used to be really into it when he was younger, and has tons of those books around. Robbie has seen them and kept asking about them. Therefore, we started our own game. I thought that this would show him that it was not evil or bad, and that people that played it did NOT worship the Devil. He really seems to enjoy it, and his father (Papa) is the DM. After reading the Harry Potter books, we got him the Harry Clue game, and he loves it. Later we got him a real Clue game. Now, he has seen the Clue movie and started reading the books as well, all on his own. He also loves Monopoly. Papa collects those too. It is always fun to go shopping for a new Monopoly game for his Papa. Well here is another long post, and I am just rambling now.
Elf Smilie

[Edited on 4/7/2003 by MelliotSandybanks]
ROFLMFAO! You used to play Librarian when you were a kid Golly? That is possibly the funniest thing I've ever heard! Big Laugh Smilie Don't most kids play at being something fun? Oh yeah, you said Maggie "The Evil one" Thatcher was one of your heroes didn't you? Weird kid, very weird...
Pbbbt! Tongue Smilie

It was fun, honest! I played detectives, librarian, Prime Minister & lots of other games with my mom. Besides, my parents moved around a lot, so I rarely had any kids my own age to play with. Very Sad Smilie Very Sad Smilie Very Sad Smilie

It's great to read about the games you play as a family, Mel! I rarely hear that from my friends who have families - they seem too interested in pushing their kids off to music, dance, art, computer, sports, tuition, singing, and whatever lessons. Seems to me the kids hardly have time to breathe, let alone have fun. I hear a lot of parents wanting to give their child everything, but all it sounds like is that they're competing with their peers on who can have the brightest, smartest child prodigy. Sad, that.

Course, I can't comment much since I don't have a kid. But if I did, I'll let 'em run wild in the countryside to his or her heart's content.
I suppose I get it from my parents. We did many things together. They would read to me and play games. Not as much after my sister was born, because she was a lot more active than I was. It took more to keep up with her than it did me. Lol I did not have many friends as a child either, but that was because I started having seizures at 9 months old. Every time I went outside to play with the other kids, I would end up in the hospital or changing medication or something else just as drastic. It caused many learning problems for me and the kids teased me a lot. Therefore, my self-esteem was shattered. At one point, I would not talk to anyone unless they talked to me first, then it took me a while to decide if they were really true friends or just going to tease me some more. To say the least the friends that I did make were true blue, and I still have them. I was very thankful when my seizures went away when I was 14, and then we moved when I was 17. I made a brand new start and lots of friends, and boyfriends. I really came out of my shell, and now you can't get me to shut up. Therefore, my best friends were books, and my parents. My mom was great until I was 18, then we had serious problems but that is another story & we have since made up.

Reading was always my escape. I think that is why I like the Hobbit so much. It was a child's book, written on an upper scale. That really intrigued me. The elves were so beautiful, like I always wanted to be. The dwarves were so strong and unyielding where I was so unsure of myself and indecisive. The hobbits were so normal and unappreciated and looked down on in the beginning but there was always more to them than met the eye. I really connected with that. Gandalf was so magical. What kid does not want to have magical powers? It was just a great book for me. I can't wait to share it with Robbie.

[Edited on 4/7/2003 by MelliotSandybanks]
Awww... Smoke Smilie

Plastic: you've nearly reached 2500 now! How can I EVER catch up with you this way? Tongue Smilie

Golly: you're on 992 now, so nearly there... Big Smile Smilie
Oh and Golly: I thought I was weird as a kid. Ok ok, I'm still weird now, but that's not the point here... Tongue Smilie

Mel, I think that most children's books written before the '50s are worth reading. Can't stand the 'dumbing down' styles of modern writers, children or adult. Not that I've read many, mind you, since I tend to avoid many English-language books written after WWII - they just don't have the same feel. Unless it's Star Wars novels, of course. They may be dumb, but I still like 'em. Wink Smilie

Hey, I've finally gone past 1000! Hooray!!! Pary Smilie Pary Smilie Birthday Smilie Big Smile Smilie Christmas Smilie Dunce Smilie Birthday Smile Smilie Smoke Smilie Big Smile Smilie

I'm normal Tommy, it's everyone else that's weird. Very Big Grin Smilie

[Edited on 14/9/2002 by Ungoliant]
I'm normal Tommy, it's everyone else that's weird

LOL! That would make a great sig, Golly! Big Laugh Smilie
I noticed you've changed your sig, Tommy. Lol, good one that. Very Big Grin Smilie
I read a similar notice in an Irish pub. Between the pots, pans and footballs, there was this little sign saying: "What the hell are you looking up here for?" and I couldn't do anything but laugh. Big Laugh Smilie
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