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What Have I Got in My Pocket

The recent release of the new "Hobbit" film has gotten me thinking about the narrative pleasures of that book, and in particular, the moment that stuck with me from reading the book as a child. It's just when Bilbo is struggling to outwit the slithery Gollum with his little riddle game, and fumbles for the plain gold ring he has just slipped into his pocket. Unthinkingly, stumped for riddles, Bilbo asks, "What have I got in my pocket?" This moment is the start of one of the grandest triumphs in the book - and a terrific example of a simple, intriguing way to get a story in motion. (Read more »)

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