LOTR Read-A-Long:The Two Towers Part 3

Samwise Gamgee: I wonder if we’ll ever be put into songs or tales.
Frodo Baggins: What?
Samwise Gamgee: I wonder if people will ever say, "Let’s hear about Frodo and the Ring," and they’ll say, "Yes, that’s one of my favorite stories. Frodo was really courageous, wasn’t he, Dad?" "Yes, my boy, the most famousest of hobbits. And that’s saying a lot."
Frodo Baggins: You left out one of the chief characters: Samwise the Brave. I want to hear more about Sam. Frodo wouldn’t have got far without Sam.
Samwise Gamgee: Now Mr. Frodo, you shouldn’t make fun. I was being serious.
Happy Saturday, to everyone that have been traveling on this quest to Mount Doom. Reading the Lord of the Rings during this time of the year just feels perfect book to be devoured into. I hope that everyone enjoyed the second book in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy in The Two Towers. This week’s discussion questions were provided by Andrea of The Little Red Reviewer.
At this point of the story, Sam and Frodo were travel through Shelob’s Lair and was betrayed by Gollum(he gave up hobbit to Shelob). Sam was suppose to he he food and Gollum wanted to get his precious. Shelob was to stun Frodo. There was a change in the plans and many of you found out. Sam fended off Shelob and some Orcs found Frodo and brought up to a chamber while he was still unconscious. There is where the book ended with Sam to go on the quest alone.
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Link your post in the comments, or tweet it to me.  Once again, thank you for joining us on our journey to Middle Earth!
What Other Bloggers Thought:
Little Red Reviewer 
Blue Fairy's Bookshelf
Stainless Steel Droppings
Lynn’s Book Blog
All Booked Up
The Written World

Faramir strikes me as a noble, intelligent fellow, especially concerning powers beyond his control.  Had he gone to Elrond's Council instead of Boromir, how might the story have changed?
I think that Faramir and Aragon would have had a leadership struggle while Aragon was “left” to be in control of the Company. I think this because Faramir is use to giving orders and other not questioning his authority most of the time.
I think that Faramir would have been beneficial throughout the journey with his knowledge of the land. With him not having the horn that Boromir had, I am not that sure how the Orc attack would have concluded. The whole party possibly might have been murdered.

What did you think of Shelob and her lair? Would you willingly go in there?  Yes, I know Gollum says "this is the only way", but Frodo could have demanded they explore and attempt to find another way.
I think that I would have been leery of Gollum considering that he has a split personality disorder. As I stated last section, I am a fan of caves. I am not that sure if I would have went in, because Gollum said that it was the ONLY way. Gollum took advantage of the burden of The ring was putting of Frodo physically and mentally.
There is always another way to get to a place. It may take longer, but I would not have bought Gollum’s choice of this is the only way.

When Sam saves Frodo from Shelob, he finds himself in the vision he saw in Galadriel's mirror.  Knowing the future isn't always as helpful as one would think, is it?
Growing up I wanted to have a time machine like on Back To The Future. Now I am not that sure if I really want to know things that I would mess up on in the future. In this case, I do think that seeing the future is helpful for Sam.
Sam does realize that he can come up big when his master NEEDS his the most. He is Mr. Clutch facing the Shelob. I am sure that Andrea enjoyed another sider chapter in this read-a-long.

Having always been a sidekick/helper of sorts, Sam reluctantly realizes he may have to become the Ringbearer. What do you think Sam will do with the Ring of Power? If you were the sidekick of the hero, and suddenly had the opportunity to become the hero, to finish the quest, what would you do with the Ring of Power?
For me, I have identified with Sam during the entire quest. i think that Sam would finish was he and Mr. Frodo set and started that seemed like eons ago. Like he said at the end of the book when he was debating with himself. He would finish the quest if Frodo is not alive. I think that Sam will take a detour and save Frodo from the Orcs, if he can.To Sam he would be lost if Frodo was gone for good.
As for me I would give it a valiant effort to finish the job to destroy the One Ring at Mount Doom. I am not that sure how successful I would be. I would try to save my friend or master as well.

The conversation between the two Orcs at the end was highly amusing for me.  Yes, it serves to educate Sam on Frodo's condition, and Tolkien could have just left it at that, but he didn't. The Orc's commiserating could have been any soldiers in any war.  To me, it felt like Tolkien was humanizing the enemy, instead of the traditional dehumanizing of the enemy that you usually see in war stories. What do you think?
I am with Andrea here and I thought that this part of the story was funny. It was great Sam found out that Frodo was alive after being stunned instead of Frodo being dead. I think that it helps that Tolkien served in World War I. So he has first hand knowledge of how soldiers socialize with one another.
This is what is so great about Tolkien. You are in a serious situation in the Lair and such. Then he throws this part in the book. It would have been interesting to have met him in real life.
The book ends on a cliffhanger. Are you excited to finish up the trilogy and see how it all turns out?
I am itching to start the Return of the King. I am not that sure if I can make it til November 5th to begin read the book. It is going to be interesting to see how the trilogy finishes up after ROTK.I was on the edge of my seat for most of this book. So far, this is my favorite book in the LOTR story.
My heart is still racing with me just finishing the book on Friday night, while I write this post.

Just wanted to put out a snippet out there as well about the a word that occurs all the time. When Tolkien uses peril throughout the book(s). I just think of the 80's cartoon The Smurfs. With the overuse of the word "smurf" and its derivatives in a variety of meanings. Great now I think I might get my Smurfs DVD out..:)

I would like to thank everyone for joining the LOTR Read-A-Long to Middle Earth with Andrea, Carl V and myself.
Do not forget to leave your link to your blog post so that visitors can see what your thoughts were in this section of the Read-a-Long.


  1. I didn't think about that with Faramir. I figured he was so used to taking orders from his father and brother that he'd take them from Aragorn too? But probably not. :(

    The Shelob chapter wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. I'd hyped myself up for something super spidery and freaky, and then it was only a little scary and freaky. I did read it in broad daylight tho!

    If Frodo ever trusts Gollum again after the whole Shelob thing, he's just being dumb.

    btw, here's my link:

  2. Hadn't even thought about them not having the horn. That wouldn't have been good.

    Actually I don't agree about Faramir and Aragorn. I think Faramir is actually very used to taking orders and honoring them, both as a second son and also as a leader in the military. His men react positively to the idea that the sword of Elendil was reforged and I think Faramir would have actually taken to Aragorn even more easily than Boromir because Faramir isn't thinking about power and control like his brother and father were.

    Ultimately I think Gollum's way was probably really the most safe way of all the bad ways to go. Even Gollum knew he couldn't slink around the ways that the orcs were guarding or he would lose Frodo and by default the Precious. And had Sam and Frodo actually been thinking ahead and working together the light from Galadriel and Sting would have protected them despite Gollum's plans for treachery. As it was though, both were too weak and tired to be thinking that clearly and so disaster struck.

    I don't see Frodo as being 'dumb' to trust Gollum because I don't think he ever has trusted Gollum. I think he has actually been very wise, manipulating Gollum's desire for the ring to remain safe from Sauron against him, using the only leverage he has to make sure Gollum at the very least is looking out for the interests of the Precious. In that way Frodo can "trust" Gollum to take certain actions while at the same time remain somewhat suspicious of his overall intentions. I actually think Tolkien give Frodo much more of a wary eye than the films do. In the films Frodo is much more intent on Gollum being saved and so makes some really poor judgements. In the books Frodo makes the best choice out of two evil choices on most accounts, and even when he is weak and not thinking clearly he is not alone in that, Sam, who is 100% suspicious the whole time also lets his guard down.

    I'm with you in that I would not want to know what happens in the future because I would be afraid of seeing everything turn out to be a big mess!

    I agree that Tolkien brings his war experiences into this, and it is interesting to see the orcs questioning authority and doubting their superiors. It is an interesting comment on war and one that comes from "the enemy" which makes it even more interesting.

    I also finished The Two Towers on Friday night and can't wait to start reading The Return of the King. I doubt I'll be waiting until the 5th to start, but we'll see.

  3. I think it's brilliant the way Tolkien manages to use humour to lighten up the mood. Also, good thinking with the horn - never even thought about that.
    I actually always thought that Boromir resented Aragorn a little and accepted his authority very reluctantly. Not sure that Faramir would respond in the same way because he seems so calm and measured.
    Definitely don't want to know what's going to happen in the future!
    Lynn :D
    My link http://lynnsbooks.wordpress.com/2011/10/29/lord-of-the-rings-read-along-end-of-book-two-the-two-towers/

  4. I am just glad that I have such great friends that decided to take this journey with me to Mount Doom with the Fellowship.

    I cannot wait til the journey continues.


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