Farmer Giles of Ham did not look
like a hero. He was fat and red bearded and enjoyed a slow, comfortable
life. Then one day a rather deaf and short-sighted giant blundered
on to his land. More by luck than skill, Farmer Giles managed to
scare him away. The people of the village cheered: Farmer Giles was a hero! His reputation
spread far and wide across the kingdom. So it was natural that when the
dragon Chrysophylax visited the area it was Farmer Giles who was expected
to do battle with it!
The Adventures of Tom Bombadil consists of 16 poems,
three of which are about Tom Bombadil himself, one about a hobbit and
a troll, two about the Man in the Moon, six which represent simply "adventures,"
and four which are in the nature of a bestiary. There is a wealth of good
storytelling and mythmaking here. For those who love The Lord of the Rings,
there are hobbits in the Shire, elves sailing west, and enough familiar
places to give one the feel of Middle Earth as the setting.