Why The Lord of the Rings holds a special place in my heart

by Danielle Cole

A stylish shot of The Lord of the Rings novel
Photo by Josh Henderson

Growing up, I always loved Tolkien’s work, especially The Lord of the Rings. While the The Lord of the Rings film trilogy was great, my love started before I’d ever seen them. In fact, The Lord of the Rings has been part of my life since I was four years old.

My first memories of The Lord of the Rings

I don’t usually talk about my earliest memories of The Lord of the Rings because they are so precious to me (Tolkien pun intended). When I was four years old, my mother – also a The Lord of the Rings lover – decided she, my older brother, and I would have reading time together before bed. She thought this would be a good way to share literature with my brother and I, as well as have us practice our reading skills.

During our first reading time, my mother pulled out one of her most prized possessions – a beautiful, leather-bound copy of The Lord of the Rings trilogy. The book was bigger than my lap and was intimidatingly thick, but my mother said not to worry – we would read through it bit by bit. We began with her reading. After we did that for a while, she shifted to reading a few pages, then having my brother read a page, then having I read a page (with plenty of help). Soon, reading time was my favourite part of the day. There was some special about having the book on my lap, feeling its weight on my crossed legs. My favourite moments, however, were when my mother was reading to my brother and I.

In the end, we got all the way through The Lord of the Rings trilogy. By then, my brother and I were hooked. We convinced my mother to start over and we read through the entire trilogy again.

Our reading time sparked not only a love of The Lord of the Rings and Tolkien in me, but also a lifelong passion for reading.

I still love to read, especially high fantasy novels. My favourite book, however, remains The Lord of the Rings. I try to re-read the entire trilogy every few years. Then, every year, I re-watch the extended editions of the films over the holidays.

Recently, my mother gave me her leather-bound copy of The Lord of the Rings. It’s been well-used – and has cracks in several parts of its spine… and I adore it. I can’t wait to be able to do my next re-read with the book that sparked my initial love of The Lord of the Rings.

I’m also thrilled about the recent announcement of a new Tolkien television series. While I know some people are worried about how it will turn out, I’m excited that the series will likely spark a resurgence in mainstream Tolkien fandom. You know what that could mean… A Dandies Tolkien fandom improv show!

Don’t worry though, fantasy lovers. You don’t have to wait for a The Lord of the Rings or Tolkien show to get your fantasy fandom improv dose! The Dandies have all kinds of Harry Potter fandom improv shows coming up at Blyth’s Festival of Wizardry. All your favourite spoof characters will be there, including the one and only Several Snakes!