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The History of Middle-earth: Pt. 3 Hardcover – 6 Jan 2003

4.8 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 1488 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; New Ed edition (6 Jan. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007149174
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007149179
  • Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 4.8 x 22.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 301,626 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

J.R.R. Tolkien was born on 3rd January 1892. After serving in the First World War, he became best known for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, selling 150 million copies in more than 40 languages worldwide. Awarded the CBE and an honorary Doctorate of Letters from Oxford University, he died in 1973 at the age of 81.

Product Description

Review

‘One marvels anew at the depth, breadth and persistence of J.R.R. Tolkien’s labour. No one sympathetic to his aims – the invention of a secondary universe – will want to miss this chance to be present at the creation.’
Publishers Weekly

From the Back Cover

J.R.R. Tolkien is famous the world over for his unique literary creation, exemplified in The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion. What is less well known, however, is that he also produced a vast amount of further material that greatly expands upon the mythology and numerous stories of Middle-earth, and which gives added life to the thousand-year war between the Elves and the evil spirit Morgoth, and his terrifying lieutenant, Sauron.

It was to this enormous task of literary construction that his Tolkien’s youngest son and literary heir, Christopher, applied himself to produce the monumental and endlessly fascinating series of 12 books, The History of Middle-earth.

This hardback edition brings together the final three volumes of The History of Middle-earth – Morgoth’s Ring, The War of the Jewels and The Peoples of Middle-earth.

Epic in scope and extent, and featuring rare maps and illustrations drawn by J.R.R. Tolkien, this final volume of the trilogy presents the reader with a unique opportunity to collect the complete set of The Complete History of Middle-earth in an attractive and lasting edition.

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Format: Hardcover
NOTE: The individual volumes in the 12-volume History of Middle-Earth series are also published in three large 'Parts' in a series inconsistently titled either The Complete History of Middle-earth and The History of Middle-earth

Part 1 contains volumes I-V from the single-volume series.
Part 2 contains volumes VI to IX from the single-volume series.
Part 3 contains volumes X-XII from the single-volume series.

Which you might buy depends on your taste and how you plan to use the books. Would you rather have three bulky volumes of about 1500 pages each or twelve volumes that are typically 450 pages long?

****

Collections of an author's work are often confusing, particularly when what the author has created is as complex as Tolkien's writings. Here's an overview of the twelve-volume History of Middle-earth, which was edited by his son Christopher Tolkien. Hopefully, it will help you select which book or books to buy.

Keep something in mind. In the U.S. Houghton Mifflin publishes Tolkien's authorized works in hardback and trade paperback editions, while Ballantine Books publishes them as cheaper mass-market paperbacks. For some reason, Ballantine doesn't always make it clear that some of their titles are part of the same History of Middle-earth series as those published by Houghton Mifflin. If the title is the same, the content is the same. Which you buy depends on your taste in books and finances. I have copies of both.

GROUP ONE, VOLUMES I - V, EARLY TALES

These five volumes deal primarily with Tolkien's writings before the publication of The Hobbit (1937) and The Lord of the Rings (1954-55). In them, Tolkien was struggling as a still unknown author to create his first history of Middle-earth.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a beautiful book comprising the last three histories of Middle Earth; Morgoth's Ring, The War of the Jewel and the Peoples of Middle Earth. The Histories of Middle Earth are intended as a companion to the Lord of the Rings, and go into great detail about the history, peoples and cultures of this magical land. I would recommend this edition, as opposed to the paperbacks, as it is almost the same total price, but this lovely hardback will last longer and looks better. Highly recommended to the avid fan of Tolkien - but if you found Lord of the Rings hard to get through, then don't bother.
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Format: Hardcover
With this mammoth release, we get the literary backstory, so to say, of J. R. R. Tolkien's turmoil and travails of the composition of one of the most complex fantasies every constructed. Gather all twelve previously published volumes into three huge books, these tell the final story of Tolkien's world, in all its grandeur and heart breaking beauty. The hefty price tag that is attached is to be expected, seeing it covers twelve expensive single volumes. The first two volumes deal with the earliest form of THE SILMARILLION, the next are the epic LAYS that were never completed, and showing Tolkien was a poet of very accomplished calibre. THE SHAPING deals with the geography and physical history, while THE LOST ROAD shows us an unfinished novel and several other unearthed treasures. The real meat, to literary historians who are not specialized in Tolkien and to the causal fan, is the volumes VI-IX, which deal with the creation of THE LORD OF THE RINGS, one of the most significant volumes ever released the world, online with Homer, Virgil, and Dante. This is a graduate level look at what goes in the making of a literary masterpiece. The last of the volumes deal with Tolkien's attempt to recast THE SILMARILLION in sometimes radical departures from the accepted structure. The last volume is THE PEOPLES OF MIDDLE-EARTH, which are the appendices of THE LORD OF THE RINGS, and several interesting tidbits, included a Numenor story and THE NEW SHADOW, the aborted sequel to THE LORD OF THE RINGS.
This publication is for the serious student and lover of J. R. R. Tolkien's work. The causal fan will find this much too expensive and much too expansive. For those only marginally interested the volumes dealing with THE LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy novel should be looked at.
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Format: Hardcover
I got this collection of three books this year and have read all but one page of them.

In part three there was a printing error. This was replicated in the identical place in the replacement copy and so I have had to return the book(s).

I found the information absorbing and as complete as anyone could wish. The most useful & enjoyable part was the second one (stories about versions of LOTR). I would be spoiling it if I put some of the variations I discovered. If you have read John Rateliff's The History of the Hobbit then the revelations about e.g. Gollum or who Gandalf was are nothing compared to some of the variations explored (& rejected) concerning the Fellowship. The story would have been with such a different feel!! Peter Jackson appears a purist compared to some of these.

So if you are intrigued: you will have to get these books. They are not cheap and I have still not got the full set as I am waiting for a clean copy to come back to me. HOWEVER since I did not get them through Amazon, I cannot complain about Amazon or any of its providers. It is the publisher themselves who have got this mistake to correct and to either refund me or to get me a clean & complete copy for Part 3 (this one) Perhaps if you buy this you would like to check the pages corresponding to book XII The peoples of Middle Earth Page 344... I hope it is in perfect condition for you.
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