This review is going to be short, because this book really shouldn’t be treated as its own book. For those of you who didn’t read my review of The Fellowship of the Ring (or are generally unfamiliar with Tolkien), you should know that the Lord of the Rings series was written as one book. Tolkien just wanted to publish one epic novel, and his publishers were like, “Dude. No. Nobody reads that much.”
And Tolkien probably just raised one sage eyebrow at them and said, “Oh, really?”
But the publisher was in charge of the publishing, and he sent Tolkien into a corner until he could find a convenient place to split the thing up into thirds. Hence, the trilogy.
The Two Towers is the dead middle of the series/book, the filling in the novel. The peanut butter in the PBJ. The meat in the meatloaf. The cheese in the cheesecake. You get it. This is where all the action builds up, but doesn’t really resolve. Also, since the assumption is that you’ve already read The Fellowship, you’re not going to get much explanation, either. So don’t – I repeat, don’t – try to read this as its own book.
As long as you’re reading this as part of the series, it’s delightful. This section is an action movie of epic proportions, with battles and skirmishes peppering the pages in blood (but mostly ink). It will take a while to wade through, because it’s Tolkien, but it’s well worth the wade, and you’ll be left hungry for The Return of the King. ♦