In the Johnson household, we are crazy about all things Tolkien. Yes, we did indeed read all the books. Yes, we do love all the LOTR movies. No, it is best not to ask our more vocal Tolkien fans about the Hobbit movies. My big strong hubby nearly cried when we finally visited The Eagle and Child, a lifelong dream for him. Google it, if you don’t know what it is.
Today’s guest post is from my friend Jill Richardson, a fellow Tolkien lover and Jesus follower. I met her last year at Jen Hatmaker’s house and have been a huge fan ever since. After I met her, I found out she wrote a book called Hobbits, You and the Spiritual World. I, of course, ordered it immediately. I invited her back today because she is re-launching her book this week and I LOVE THIS BOOK! I’ll let Jill tell you more below, but be sure to join the party on Facebook to get all the details.
An Unexpected Party! by Jill Richardson
Three years ago, I wrote a book about hobbits. And elves. And dwarves. And some pretty kick-butt women as well. Mostly, about God. It was designed as a devotional for teens, but a lot of adults have loved it, too. Here’s the back cover copy:
“Hobbits, elves, and dragons have become common fantasy characters but do they have more relevance to your life than you think? Are they as real as, or the same as, people you meet every day? Maybe not literally, but J.R.R. Tolkien’s famous characters bring to life real character qualities we all can learn from, whether good or bad. What can the bravery of a hobbit, the faith of a elf, or the greed of a dragon teach teens about themselves? How can their stories lead us to the real Kingdom where God is working out way more than a fantasy for his people? Dig in to these familiar characters and relevant Bible passages to find out. Come out understanding how to live your own epic story!”
I love Tolkien, and I love teens/young adults, and I LOVE connecting the next generation to faith. It’s been a journey — an adventure, one might say! — that I can’t wait to continue.
I am having a party over on Facebook, and I would love it if you could join me. Come to the party, enter contests, win prizes, have fun, see weird photos, get recipes for hobbit food. What else could anyone want? #hobbitdevo.
- Why The Hobbit? What sparked your interest in Tolkien?
Hah. Years ago,my brother tried to get me to read the books. He said they were the greatest things ever. I tried first with The Silmarillion and said, “Yeah, right. Don’t think so.” Can you think of a better way to bore a fifteenish-year-old girl? Fast forward to years later when my husband started to read them to our girls when they were elementary school aged. I listened, saw the first movie, then picked the books up myself and devoured them. There is something magic about Tolkien’s skill mixed with real, unforgettable, and deep characters, and a story of epic good and evil fought by everyday heroes. Who else would get away with such unlikely heroes? He manages to show both the greatness and depth of evil in humankind in this small world of his.
- Why would teenagers want to read this book?
It might seem that fictional fantasy characters don’t have much in common with real teenagers. But that is so not true. They feel inadequate, afraid, angry, proud, exhausted, hopeful—all the things we all feel. Teens are looking for their adventure in life—how do they fit in this world and what is their task? In Tolkien’s world, it’s all about tasks and unique callings; it’s about normal, average people finding their place and doing great things. How do they do it? Continue reading