The 1938 New York Times Book Review of The Hobbit

original Artwork, The Hobbit

The Hobbit, or There and Back Again is a children’s fantasy novel by English author J. R. R. Tolkien. It was published on 21 September 1937 to wide critical acclaim, being nominated for the Carnegie Medal and awarded a prize from the New York Herald Tribune for best juvenile fiction. The book remains popular and is recognized as a classic in children’s literature.

One of the most freshly original and delightfully imaginative books for children that have appeared in many a long day.

First American Edition of The Hobbit
The early United States editions of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbitwere published by the Houghton Mifflin Company of Boston and New York City. They are very collectible but extraordinarily difficult to identify. 

The Hobbit is one of the greatest books I have ever read and over the years I have owned three copies. It’s one of those books I lend to friends and one I never get back, so I guess it’s too good a book to return. My most recent copy is not going anywhere.

While the Lord of the Rings was targeted at a much older audience, I think that The Hobbit appeals more to younger people because it is less complicated and a whole lot shorter. The Hobbit is based on events that took place before the Lord of the Rings trilogy begins – before the ring was discovered essentially – but it has no less adventure. J.R.R. Tolkein certainly delivers with all of his books.

The novel is as popular today as it was when it was released in 1937, below is The 1938 New York Times Book review.

the 1938 New York Times Book Review of the Hobbit


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