Surprises of Yule

Author: Aelaer

Nominator: Kara's Aunty

2011 Award Category: Cross-Cultural: The Fellowship

Story Type: Story  ✧  Length: Short Story

Rating: General  ✧  Reason for Rating: N/A

Summary: Pippin has always celebrated Yuletide, and yet with the Fellowship leaving Rivendell days before Yule, it looks as if he will have to miss this year. That is, of course, before the others in the Fellowship hear about the tradition...

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Reviewed by: Kara's Aunty  ✧  Score: 7

Tweenager Pippin yearns for one final moment of merriment before the Quest begins; longs for the memory of a final happy Yule to see him and his companions through the trials ahead, though even he can't guess at how severe those trials will be. Yet even as he appears to abandon all hope of this seemingly impossible dream, fate grants him a fairy godmother in the shape of none other than Boromir, and the great lord of men - chagrined to see the normally chipper hobbit so gloomy - makes it his mission to inform Pippin's kin and friends (both old and new) with the sole intention of intervening to end the youngest hobbit's gloom. Very soon, Glorfindel is charged with the task of diverting the young Took while Boromir, Merry and the rest of Rivendell strive to organise the Yuletide bash to end all Yuletide bashes. Delightful and atmospheric, Surprises of Yule is a tale to lose oneself in and take great pleasure from, whatever the season (though, admittedly, it is even more enchanting this close to Christmas).

Reviewed by: Dreamflower  ✧  Score: 5

The Fellowship setting off on the Quest right around the time of Yule has given rise to many stories of the Company celebrating in one form or another. In this particular delightful version the celebration is held early to accommodate the departing travelers, and Master Elrond's entire household is caught up in a plot to celebrate. I really enjoy that it's Boromir who notices Pippin's homesickness, and who seeks out Merry for advice on how to cheer Pippin up! I also like the way Merry has everything all planned out-- very much in character for our Brandybuck! This is a delightful read for this (or any) time of year!

Reviewed by: Darkover  ✧  Score: 4

This is a delightful story about friendship, and about Christmas under another name. I think it is a bit harder to hunt boars than the author has implied here, but otherwise, it is a very well-written story. The dialogue and the characterization are both equally good. This tale is clear evidence that having hobbits around always livens things up, and tasty foods are prepared! This story is just the thing to cheer the reader up. Very nicely done.

Reviewed by: Linaewen  ✧  Score: 3

An excellent gap filler about Yule celebrations in Rivendell before the Fellowship sets out on the quest! I am particularly fond of the idea that Boromir worked so hard to make it such a nice Yule for young Pippin!