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J. R. R. Tolkien : The Man Who Created the Lord of the Rings Paperback – 2001

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Paperback, 2001

Product details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: SCHOLASTIC INC. (2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 077376285X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0773762855
  • Product Dimensions: 21.4 x 14.9 x 1.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kurt A. Johnson on 18 Nov. 2003
Format: Paperback
This slim book is a fascinating look at John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, the author of the classic works, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Starting with his birth in South Africa in 1892, the book shows his life, and the progression of his writing career. Along the way, the reader is given a real feeling for Mr. Tolkien, and the life that he lived.
This book, though originally written for the younger reader, is a wonderful addition to anyone's library. I especially like the way that Catholicism is treated in such a sympathetic way, just the way that Tolkien would have presented it himself. I found this book to be informative and quite interesting to read, and highly recommend it to everyone.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 6 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Good intro 28 Feb. 2003
By E. A Solinas - Published on
Format: Paperback
"Who was J.R.R. Tolkien?" With the release of the astounding movie trilogy, a lot of people are suddenly flocking into the "Lord of the Rings" fandom, people who previously would have paid no attention to a classic fantasy or its author. If you don't know much about Tolkien, then this book is a good introduction to his life.
After an introduction where Coren talks about the popularity of the book (and how much critics hate that it IS popular), Coren introduces us to Tolkien in his youth. John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born in a turmoil-filled time, was orphaned as a boy, fought in World War I, and married and had four children. And, of course, he produced books -- the fantasy classic "The Hobbit" and the darker, more epic "Lord of the Rings," "Roverandum," a few other little tales, and the Bible-like "Silmarillion."
Coren does a good job with the book. Not a great job, but a good job. His tone is usually pretty conversational, but occasionally he gets a little too heated or gushy or cutesy. This book doesn't contain any new interpretations or information; it's pretty basic, he tells us what Tolkien did, where, and sometimes why. There are plenty of crisp black and white photographs of Tolkien, his buddy C.S. "Jack" Lewis, Tolkien's homes, his guardian Father Morgan, book covers, parts of Oxford such as Merton College, and even a few wide shots of all of Oxford.
Normally this book would earn four stars, but there are some basic errors in describing people and events in "Lord of the Rings." This is pardonable in the author -- everyone makes booboos -- but an editor should have caught those little items; that's what editors are for. It gives the book a rather rushed feel.
If you already know about J.R.R. Tolkien, his life and his works, then you won't get anything new from this book. But if you're a new fan, or never learned much about Tolkien himself, then this can be considered a good introduction to the basics.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Juvenile, but not in a good way 22 Feb. 2002
By David Bratman - Published on
Format: Paperback
Already in hardcover and recently released in softcover, this is a juvenile biography of Tolkien: it's intended for children, and written down for children. The cozy, smarmy tone and false sense of intimacy (leading Coren into many errors, though not as many as Michael White's =Life and Work of J.R.R. Tolkien=) make this book painful reading. Like all other juvenile biographies of Tolkien, or of C.S. Lewis (another subject Coren has essayed), this is entirely outclassed by adult offerings. Any child capable of appreciating =LotR= enough to desire a biography of the author can handle Humphrey Carpenter's classic book, and should.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Ok 25 Mar. 2002
By AK BC - Published on
Format: Paperback
I found this book very interesting until I got to the synopsis of the Lord of the Rings. I found four mistakes! 1 - Mike says that Legolas, Gimli, AND Aragorn are in a boat 2gether going down the Anduin and Frodo and Sam are alone. Wrong. Aragorn is with the 2 hobbits. 2 - It mentions that Frodo is wounded in battle and captured by Orcs. Wrong again, he was wounded by a spider. 3 - The guy totally skips over when Aragorn is crowned! That is half of the point of ROTK! 4 - Lotho Simple? Where did he get that? It's Lotho Sackville-Baggins! I am quite irritated with this book! I now have no idea if half the facts are even true! Tiis is an easy read, but Mike sure didn't read LOTR! And, I KNOW some of the other facts aren't true...
I wouldn't recommend this book to someone who hasn't read LOTR at all, because the synopsis is totally wrong. I really wanted to learn something about JRRT, but I learned something else - Mike doesn't know what he's talking about.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A good introduction for adults too. 4 Jan. 2003
By Denyse O'Leary - Published on
Format: Paperback
Although "JRR - The Man Who Created ..." was aimed at young adults, I found it a good introduction for me as an older adult. It can be read in an evening, but I believe that it touches on all the main points. True, it does not go into the scholarly quarrels and quibbles or the lit crit, but I did not need that. I really just needed to know what type of a person Tolkien was. The book serves that purpose admirably. If I were cataloguing for a library, I would put one in the adult section too.
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
J.R.R. Tolkien fans, this is the book for you! 31 Jan. 2002
By Priscilla Stafford - Published on
Format: Paperback
For all "Lord of the Rings" fans, this book is a must read. A great biography on that great orphan, scholar, soldier, professor, and author of what is considered by many to be the finest book of the 20th Century, J.R.R. Tolkien!
There are 125 pages about the life of Tolkien, from when he was born in South Africa, January 3, 1892, to the day he died on September 2, 1973. The book is divided into seven chapters:
Chapter 1) Beginnings: This chapter tells about how Tolkien's parents were married and they began their life in South Africa. When both his parents died he lived with Father Francis and when he was old enough, was accepted to Exeter College.
Chapter 2) Oxford and Upward: Tolkien is now a man and has married his love, Edith Bratt. But then comes World War I and he is sent out as a second lieutenant. Luckily he comes back home safely.
Chapter 3) Inklings: Now a professor, Tolkien starts becoming very popular among students and friends. This chapter talks mostly about Tolkien's professor life and about his friends, especially one of his greatest friends, C.S. Lewis. (author of the acclaimed "Narnia Chronicles".)
Chapter 4) A Hole in the Ground: Tolkien finishes writing his first book, "The Hobbit". And quite to his surprise, he finds that many, many people simply loved it! Around that time, he also publishes "Farmer Giles of Ham" and "Mr. Bliss". He also beings writing "The Silmarillion", which he never really finished but his son, Christopher, did.
Chapter 5) His Lordship of the Rings: After 12 years of writing, Tolkien finished his "Lord of the Rings" story. Published in three books, it won over people and Tolkien is now very popular.
Chapter 6) Just Another Teacher: Even with his fame, Tolkien is still a wonderful teacher and family man. This chapter mostly focuses on his life afterwards.
Chapter 7) End Times: This chapter deals on the last years of Tolkien's life.
As I said a terrific book! Definitely for kids 11 and up and a worthy read for adults, too. A nice collection of around 28 pictures which, though black and white, are very clear pictures. A nice introduction in the beginning which I find very interesting. And also at the end of the book, there is a bibliography on books by Tolkien, his books which were edited by others, and also books about Tolkien. The index at the end was a good idea, too. A great read!
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