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Why The Hobbit Is A Successful Book

971 words - 4 pages

A Believable HeroWhat is a hero? One commonly thinks of a man from another planet with super strength, speed, and vision, or perhaps an untouchable sports figure. But how often is a small, plump hobbit who enjoys the comforts of his home and a routine consisting of tea time and afternoon snacks considered a hero? In fact, even such a person is considered a hero, and Bilbo Baggins is this person. In The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkein, Bilbo is nothing short of a hero. For a hero does not have to be a towering man or a larger-than life sports figure, but rather a person who has conquered his fears and accomplished his goal. The Hobbit is a successful book because its tale takes an ordinary person and transforms him into a hero.By nature, Hobbits are not adventurers. They are a peaceful people who enjoy being to themselves and having everything in order. Never would a hobbit decide to leave on a quest of thievery and danger. Like most hobbits, Bilbo enjoys his snug little hole until he is confronted by Gandalf the wizard. After some convincing, this hobbit reluctantly signs a contract to help the dwarf Thorin and Thorin's thirteen companions regain their family's treasure. Despite his reluctance, Bilbo turns out to be the most admirable character in the book.Bilbo begins to show his valor and courage in each event that he encounters. Early in the book when Bilbo and the dwarves are confronted by Trolls, Bilbo courageously goes to investigate the situation. Despite being caught, he still shows courage. Rather than having Bilbo become instilled with strength, cunning, and skill overnight, Tolkein has him progress slowly but surely down his path to heroism, which makes Bilbo's story even more believable. Each time Bilbo is confronted with a challenge, however, he becomes increasingly cunning and courageous. After stumbling down a hole, Bilbo is confronted by a creepy figure named Gollum. Not only does Bilbo show his smarts by answering all of Gollum's riddles and stumping Gollum with his own riddle, but he also outsmarts Gollum by tricking him into leading him to the exit of the cavern in which Bilbo had fallen. Bilbo does not only get himself out of trouble, but several times he saves his companions from an almost certain doom. For example, Bilbo saves his companions after they have been captured by a group of oversized spiders. He infiltrates the spiders' base, and frees his companions from the spiders' captivity. During his infiltration, Bilbo nicknames his sword "Sting." When he gives his sword a nickname, Tolkein is showing that Bilbo is becoming more trusting in his abilities and skills. Another example is when Bilbo shows his intelligence by devising a plan to free his companions after they...

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