I'm rereading The Lord of the Rings for the eleventy-first time, and blogging my thoughts about it. You lucky people... So Gollum has led Sam and Frodo to the Black Gate of Mordor, and they've found it shut. They turn south, and their weary journey continues - they have no food except the Elvish Lembas they brought from Lorien, which is getting a bit samey. The landscape is still dreary and ruinous, and now that they are so close to Sauron's stronghold the Ring on its chain round Frodo's neck is getting heavier and heavier - his growing weariness and Sam's concern for him are constant themes in these chapters. First sight of Ithilien, by Ted Nasmith But as always in The Lord of the Rings , after an ordeal there comes respite, a rest, and usually a meal. It seems unlikely that the hobbits will find anywhere to rest so close to Mordor's borders, yet they do: the wooded countryside of Ithilien, which has only recently fallen under the Enemy's control,
Reviews and ruminations by Philip Reeve, author of the Mortal Engines series, the Railhead trilogy, Here Lies Arthur, Goblins, and The Legend of Kevin, Pugs of the Frozen North, etc, with Sarah McIntyre.