Nine Best Parts of The Return of the King

I read The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien for the first time last year. I can’t believe it took me this long to finish The Lord of the Rings, but I finally did it. Today I’m sharing my favorite things about this book. Unfortunately, I can’t do so without including spoilers. If you don’t want this final book spoiled, don’t read this.

Disclaimer: These are my opinions, and you don’t have to agree with me.

Number 9: Bill lives.

Sam is very attached to the pony they acquire while in Bree, but the he’s parted from Bill during the journey. I’m glad Bill survives and makes it back to safety where he and Sam are reunited.

Number 8: Frodo doesn’t want anyone killed.

When the hobbits return to the Shire, Frodo insists they deal with the problems there without killing anyone. As a pacifist, I appreciate the effort Frodo puts into protecting people’s lives, even if they are criminals.

Number 7: Frodo gets Bag End back.

I was really sad when Frodo sold Bag End to the Sackville-Bagginses. I’m very happy it’s returned to him in the end. It may not be the same, but he has it back.

Number 6: The hobbits defeat the ruffians in the Shire.

I love that the four hobbits, especially Merry and Pippin, have grown so much that they’re able to take the lead and encourage the other hobbits to stand up to the ruffians who have taken over the Shire. Hobbits may be small, but they can still be strong; and I love that they reclaim their homeland using their own strength.

Number 5: Eowyn fights in the war and defeats the head Nazgul.

I love seeing a strong female character who takes part in the battles. Not only does she fight for her people, but she also defeats the Witch King of Angmar, the lead Ringwraith. In a book with so few female characters, she and her accomplishments are much needed.

Number 4: Sam’s loyalty to Frodo.

I know I included this one in my post on the best parts of The Fellowship of the Ring; but it’s so important, I have to mention it again. Sam’s undying loyalty to Frodo is one of the most wholesome things I’ve ever seen in a book.

Number 3: Sam’s strength is imperative to the quest succeeding.

If it weren’t for Sam, the Ring never would have made it to Mordor, let alone been destroyed in the fires of Mount Doom. Sam provides the strength the mission needs to succeed, even though he isn’t the ring bearer. Sam is a hero for ensuring Frodo completes his task.

Number 2: I love Gollum’s role in the end.

Gollum is the last person you would expect to destroy the Ring, and yet he’s the one who ultimately ends up casting it into Mount Doom. Granted, it isn’t intentional, but he does it. Even before this, Gollum is critical to the mission’s success. Gollum’s the one who leads Frodo and Sam to Mordor when they don’t know the way. If it weren’t for Gollum, the mission would have failed.

Number 1: Merry and Pippin have amazing character arcs.

I love how much Merry and Pippin change over the course of the trilogy. They grow so much as individuals, becoming stronger and more confident. Even though they separate from Frodo and Sam, they still play important roles in the story.

These are the nine best parts of The Return of the King. There are other things I like about this book; but I’ve already mentioned them in previous posts, or I’ll be addressing them in a future post that covers the trilogy as a whole.

What are your favorite parts of this book? Do you agree or disagree with my thoughts? Did I forget anything? Let me know in the comments.

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