Tuesday, February 24, 2004

The Two Towers is probably my least favourite of the three books, since it is sort of the long middle of the story between the exciting beginning and the triumphant conclusion. I was reading along today and came across this sentence:

"For a while they stood there, like men on the edge of a sleep where nightmare lurks, holding it off, though they know that they can only come to morning through the shadows."

I know all great stories must have their black nights before they can have their brightest days - "the darkest hour is just before the dawn, etc." However, I sometimes forget that the dark times are truly unpleasant to slog through - and they're supposed to be. If the passage through the Dead Marshes had not been so grueling, Frodo and Sam would not have been so glad to see Ithilien, which reminds them of their own country. In the end, the whole Company is infinitely more grateful for peace and reunion because of their dark times of pain and war and separation. In order for those beautiful times to happen, though, the nightmares have to happen and even we, the readers, have to struggle through them. I appreciate these long, shadowy days of the journey more because I know what is coming at the end. Thus, in a strange sort of way, I'm enjoying this book more than I ever have before. I suppose knowing the end of the story helps one gain a bit of perspective...


Post a Comment

<< Home