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The Lord of the Rings Complete Visual Companion Paperback – 1 Nov 2004

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Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (1 Nov. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007191952
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007191956
  • Product Dimensions: 26.6 x 21.8 x 1.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 546,807 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Jude Fisher was born in Cornwall and now in London. She has worked in the book industry, as a bookseller and a publisher, for nearly twenty years, has a Master’s degree in Scandinavian Studies, specializing in Old Icelandic texts, and has published novels under her own name as well as the pseudonym of Gabriel King.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By TheClaud on 14 Jun. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this instead of each visual companion individually after I received The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Movie Guide for my birthday. Whereas The Hobbit book was full of information, interviews with actors, and behind-the-scenes stills, the visual companions for the LOTR trilogy were massively disappointing. The dull "information" was lacking in anything new and often repeated itself. Many of the images were also of a really bad quality, shockingly so; I actually wondered whether I had bought a dodgy copy. Maybe this book would be fun for kids as it doesn't offer much, but for a fan of Peter Jackson's trilogy this simply isn't good enough.

Instead I recently bought 'The Lord of the Rings: The Art of...' books for each of the three films compiled by Gary Russell. Each book is dedicated to one of the trilogy and is filled with a plethora of rare information, interviews with the artists behind the sets, costumes, etc, and basically a dream to read for any fan of the films. Beautifully presented with unique sketches, drawings, and stills, you see exactly how the films came about, and the stages of progress each character had to go through. Fascinating, compelling, and a joy to have on my shelves, I am very happy with those books instead.

If you want detailed information about the LOTR films, don't buy the visual companion. It offers very little but may be nice for a child.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Tarr Bence László on 29 Dec. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a fan pf Tolkien's writings, who not only read all of Tolkien's books many times over, but also appreciate the amazing films created by Peter Jackson. For all the magnificence and tremendous effort put into the making of these films, Jude Fishers Visual Companions only survey the very surfice of these undertaking. I have purchased and read all the Visual Companions to the LOTR and Hobbit films written by her and still don't quite grasp the intention for these books. We receive LOTR trivia with lots of illustrative photos from the movies themselves but nothing more. I believe all her books are suited for readers who know nothing or very little about Tolkien's world. I think it is a fair guide for young readers or children entering the world of Tolkien through these movies with very easily digestable key information on characters and places. As a collector of Tolkien's works and related printed editions I enjoy seeing my favourite characters once more. But if you want behind-the-scenes substantial information on the development of these movie characters or the making of these films I recommend reading Brian Sibley's movie guides, If you would like to see more of the ART behind the movies buy Gary Russell's art series on LOTR or Chris Smith's Weapons and Warfare of the LOTR.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 12 reviews
52 of 53 people found the following review helpful
Guide to Middle-Earth 14 Nov. 2004
By EA Solinas - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
There are two kinds of "Lord of the Rings" fans -- those that have seen the movie, and those that have not. For the ones who haven't, Jude Fisher is like a best pal when it comes to filling in details. Her "Lord Of The Rings: The Complete Visual Companion" not only encompasses the three visual guides she wrote before, and rounds it off with the finales.

Things have been reshuffled a little to allow for better flow (why bother with recap if it's all in the same book) and the three visual guides together seem almost seamless. Fisher examines in detail the many characters from mild hobbit Frodo down to loathsome Grima Wormtongue, the places (such as the exquisite Lothlorian) pivotal battles, strange monsters and climactic events like the battle of the Pelennor Fields.

"The Return of the King Visual Companion," the last of the three books, was released over a month before the movie was -- therefore, Fisher was restrained from giving away anything that happens after Frodo and Sam reach Mount Doom. In short, it didn't tell us anything about how the movie ended -- would Frodo destroy the Ring, or would it possess him? Would Aragorn become king? Would he marry Arwen?

Now that "Return of the King" is almost a year behind us, Fisher is free to include new chapters and beautiful photographs from the last parts of the trilogy. She adds on the climax of the entire trilogy, with Frodo struggling into the heart of Mount Doom, and ends the chapter with the ambiguous line "I have made my choice." No, it's not clear what he chose just by reading.

After that comes a chapter detailing the coronation and wedding of Aragorn and Arwen, a chapter about the Fellowship splitting up for the last time, the Hobbits returning home, and a mention of Sam Gamgee's wedding to his beloved Rosie Cotton. In the final chapter (including the loveliest picture in the entire book), Fisher describes Frodo's final departure from Middle-Earth into the west.

Fisher has a pleasant, breezy style, and is able to explain the world of Middle-Earth without dumbing down the material. Sometimes she adds background info (such as Frodo's tragic life before coming to live with Bilbo) that was not a part of the actual script, but is essential to the characters anyway. The varied, colorful photographs are quite gorgeous, and the book has been reissued in a trade paperback with glossy flaps.

Anyone disappointed that "The Return of the King Visual Companion" did not include the climax and ending will be pleased by "The Lord Of The Rings: The Complete Visual Companion" -- like the trilogy, the visual guides are best read in one big chunk.
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
A Nice Compilation 25 Jan. 2005
By Ink Gypsy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this book because I had been told that it contained all the photos from Jude Fisher's three previous visual companions: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers and The Return of the King, which I had seen, but not purchased. While it does have some of the photos, it doesn't have all of them. Photos in certain sections have been replaced by others, and in my opinion, in some cases, the replacements aren't better pictures. Two things would have made this book worthy of five stars. First, if it had been done as an oversize hardcover like its predecessors, and second, if the three individual visual companions had been entirely reprinted in this one volume, and then additional photos added. Now that I have this trilogy compilation, I won't be buying the other three individual companions, but I am sorry not to have those missing photos.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
A good LOTR book but... 17 Jun. 2005
By Kristy M. Ross - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
While Jude Fisher's writing is even and sometimes evocative, this compilation of all three visual companions feels a bit superfluous. I mean, Lord of the Rings is great, and I'm happy to see that it hasn't been merchandised to death like the Star Wars prequels. But this isn't one of my favorite LOTR books for three reasons:

1. Not enough images from Return of the King and too Fellowship heavy 2. An unsubstantial feel to the Isengard and Gondor chapters 3.Certain characters don't get wrapped up (Saruman and Denethor) But it's still a good read and a nice addition to anyone's LORD OF THE RINGS collection. Personally though, I prefer the 'ART OF' books.
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Disappointing 16 Dec. 2004
By Mama - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
My 9-year old has the 3 previous Visual Companions, in hardbound. They were beautiful. This last one seemed like a must-have so I got it for her. Understandably, many chapters duplicated but what was disappointing were the pictures. Very poor quality - dark, mostly, and poorly chosen. When I received the book from an online source, I went to a bookstore to check if my copy was just a defective one (bleeding of colors, darkness, etc...). It wasn't. I had expected more of never-before-seen photos, but much were common. My kid has better photos of the coronation. I thought this issue would be better than all 3 put together. No wonder it's cheap.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
good wrap up 6 Jan. 2005
By K. Knight - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a good summary of the three movies as well as the three other visual companions. As the owner of all three previous companions, I found some of this information old, but still interesting. The pictures as well as the end of this companion, which gives good details, is a comprehensive look at the movies with a couple book tie-ins. Overall, I would say it's a great buy if you don't own the other three, and still interesting if you do.
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