Hobbitfest: Masterpiece of Imaginative Fiction or Faux Medieval Dirge?

"On the day that we are all invited to join in a worldwide Hobbitfest, two contrasting views of The Lord of the Rings: is it a masterpiece of imaginative fiction, or a faux medieval dirge?"

Mukherjee: "The secret affair between Lancelot and Guinevere that corrodes the order of the Round Table from the inside, the sheer electricity of the forbidden love of Tristan and Isolde, the purity of Galahad’s heart that will ultimately lead him on the quest for the Holy Grail. With all this mystery, power and poetry ranged on one side, would you choose a rewriting that substitutes these inimitable, towering heroes of medieval romance with wittering creatures called Hobbits? Hobbits have hairy toes and a borderline eating disorder, live in round houses, and break into unbearable faux-minstrelsy at the first sign of a rune...."

Marshall: "I don't demand that you love The Lord of the Rings, or read it as often as I have, but a book that has ignited imaginations for more than half a century cannot be a waste of time. It may not be a perfectly crafted novel — not even, perhaps, a novel at all — but to it the author brought the creative enthusiasm of a natural storymaker, and a highly sensitive and educated love of words."

Full text at the site.

Anderson's Law

Poul Anderson was right: "There is nothing so good that someone, somewhere, won't hate it."