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The War of the Ring: The History of the Lord of the Rings, Part Three (History of the Lord of the Rings; The History of Middle-Eart) [Paperback]

J. R. R. Tolkien , Christopher Tolkien
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Sep 2000 History of the Lord of the Rings; The History of Middle-Eart

The third part of The History of The Lord of the Rings, an enthralling account of the writing of the Book of the Century which contains many additional scenes and includes the unpublished Epilogue in its entirety.

The War of the Ring takes up the story of The Lord of the Rings with the Battle of Helm’s Deep and the drowning of Isengard by the Ents, continues with the journey of Frodo, Sam and Gollum to the Pass of Cirith Ungol, describes the war in Gondor, and ends with the parley between Gandalf and the ambassador of the Dark Lord before the Black Gate of Mordor.

The book is illustrated with plans and drawings of the changing conceptions of Orthanc, Dunharrow, Minas Tirith and the tunnels of Shelob’s Lair.

This series of fascinating books has now been repackaged to complement the distinctive and classic style of the ‘black cover’ A-format paperbacks of The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales.

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.


Product details

  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Mariner Books (Sep 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618083596
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618083596
  • Product Dimensions: 21.2 x 14.1 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,563,805 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

From the Back Cover

'The War of the Ring' takes up the story of 'The Lord of the Rings' with the Battle of Helm’s Deep and the drowning of Isengard by the Ents, continues with the journey of Frodo, Sam and Gollum to the Pass of Cirith Ungol, describes the war in Gondor, and ends with the parley between Gandalf and the ambassador of the Dark Lord before the Black Gate of Mordor. Unforeseen developments that would become central to the narrative are seen at the moment of their emergence: the palantir bursting into fragments on the stairs of Orthanc, its nature as unknown to the author as to those who saw it fall, or the entry of Faramir into the story (‘I am sure I did not invent him, I did not even want him, though I like him, but there he came walking through the woods of Ithilien’).

The book is illustrated with plans and drawings of the changing conceptions of Orthanc, Dunharrow, Minas Tirith and the tunnels of Shelob’s Lair.

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

J.R.R.Tolkien (1892-1973) was a distinguished academic, though he is best known for writing The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion, plus other stories and essays. His books have been translated into over 30 languages and have sold many millions of copies worldwide

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars One for the fans 23 Dec 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This second hand purchase was good value, came quickly and was well packed. You probably won't be buying it unless you know what you're after, but just in case, I will repeat the warning that this series is for hard core Tolkien fans; the books aren't written in a particularly engaging way, are hard going really, but they are fascinating if you want the insight into how the original author's mind worked and how the better known works came together. None of the books stand alone either; for scholarly purposes you will need at least the first nine in the series.
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16 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heroics, splendor and sacrifice 11 April 2001
Format:Paperback
The third part of the trilogy is a tale of heroics, splendor and sacrifice. The Ring is finally destroyed, the King returns and the Third age comes to an end. Every time I read this book (and I have read at least a dozen times) it moves me nearly to tears. Tolkien writes about the consequences of evil and what it takes to overcome evil in a way one shouldn't think possible. In our modern world we scorn at the un-ironic praise of "good deeds" and we are used to books describing heroics only from the distance. I Tolkiens universe we get the possibility to read about the necessity of fighting the dark within Man - WITHOUT the ironic distance.
I can not recommend this book (and volume 1 and 2) strong enough. This is an absolutely "Must Read", not just for fans of the fantasy genre, but for everybody who loves a marvellous tale.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a good read 24 Dec 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you love f or and t t and k r then this book is invaluable. With great background on the tolkien thinkings.
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6 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is mint. 2 Feb 2002
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This book is very good and explains everything in great detail about the war of the ring. My favorite character is sam gamaee because he is dopy and funny.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  19 reviews
24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars And the saga continues. . . 6 Mar 2001
By David Zampino - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
"The War of the Ring" is the third installment of Christopher Tolkien's "The History of The Lord of the Rings" series, and the eighth volume of his massive "The History of Middle Earth".
Like the two volumes before it, Christopher Tolkien takes the reader on a detailed journey of the creative processes through which "The Lord of the Rings" came to be. Of particular interest in this book:
The development of the "Paths of the Dead" story.
The development of the character of Denethor, Steward of Gondor.
The development of "The Battle of the Pelennor Fields".
The development of the story of Shelob and Frodo's capture.
It's unfortunate that Christopher Tolkien was unable to finish "The History of The Lord of the Rings" in three volumes, so the reader is left with the story still unfinished. It is also worth noting that these books, especially as they proceed to the end of the story, do not simply rehash the final work. If sections of a chapter underwent little or no evolutionary development, they are treated briefly. The greatest attention is paid to those episodes which were written and re-written, often in very different ways.
I was somewhat disappointed that the theme of Gollum's "near repentance" was not treated in detail, as JRR Tolkien felt that this was a key turning-point in the story. But again, if an episode underwent little development, Christopher did not spend much time on it.
Five stars -- and another "Thank-you" to Christopher for this labor of love on his late father's behalf.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars For Die-Hard Tolkien Fans 27 Jun 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Christopher Tolkien's analysis and exhaustive research of his father's notes and drafts for the second part of "Two Towers" is an interesting read. SciComm.Net would recommend it for any prospective writers who would like to know the involved thought process and amount of drafting that goes into a complex, involving book such as Tolkien's masterpiece. War of the Rings includes notes on the Palantir, Shelob's lair, and others- See how Tolkien's story evolved over the course of several years. A must-buy from Amazon.Com for all fantasy writers, amateur to advanced, and any of Tolkien's devotees- especially at the reduced price.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another study in Rings' creation 9 May 2004
By Eric San Juan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
"The War of the Ring" - Tolkien's preferred title for "The Return of the King" - is the third of four volumes dealing with the history of the writing of "The Lord of the Rings." Like the other volumes in the series, it features unpublished writings by Tolkien, supplemented, explained, footnoted, annotated and expounded upon by his son, Christopher Tolkien.
If you're not a Tolkien fan, you need not apply. These incomplete and unfinished texts will only bore you. But if you're interested in seeing how the Professor developed the rich creation of Middle Earth, warts and all, this is a treasure trove of material.
This book is part of the larger, 12-part History of Middle Earth series, which takes a close look at the creation of Tolkien's greatest achievement - Middle Earth itself - through early drafts, unpublished texts, and dead end writings.
For ardent Tolkien readers, the series is a fascinating look at one of the great literary creations of the 20th Century, full of rich detail, writings never before seen, and stories only now being told. For more casual fans, it's text better left unread.
Like the volumes that came before ("The Return of the Shadow" and "The Treason of Isengard"), we have the earliest versions of what would later become "The Lord of the Rings." Tolkien's troubles in bringing the story to a close, abandoned storylines, and alternate endings are all presented in incomplete prose. (Take a peak at the original end of Eowyn's character arc).
The wealth of information is fantastic, and Christopher Tolkien goes to great lengths to examine each text, putting them in the context of the larger puzzle of his father's writings. The exploration of how "The Lord of the Rings" came about is fantastic - for those interested. Otherwise, it will bore. This is, after all, a series of unfinished draft chapters and essays on the text. I enjoyed it, but many won't.
Anybody wishing to do a study of Tolkien's craft, into "behind the scenes" writings, or just interested in finding a few snatches of new Middle Earth material (even if in unfinished form, there are some scattered throughout the series) will certainly find what they are looking for here. Christopher Tolkien's work here is appreciated by scores of ardent Tolkien fans. Those looking for fresh new tales about hobbits and heroes, however, will be disappointed. This isn't new fiction, nor does it even feature finished works. Seek elsewhere if you are looking for more tales in the way of "The Lord of the Rings."
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Splendid Critical History of "Rings" Saga Continues 24 Mar 2004
By John Kwok - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Christopher Tolkien does yet another masterful job in describing the process behind his father's writing of "The Lord of the Rings" saga, covering the interval from King Theodeon's and Gandalf's arrival at Isengard to the opening of the Black Gate of Mordor. The book excels in its descriptions of Denethor, Steward of Gondor, the development of the "Paths of the Dead", the "Battle of Pelennor Fields", and Frodo's fateful encounter with the giant malevolent spider Shelob. It is well worth the reader's time learning how Tolkien developed these important episodes in the saga. I concur with an earlier reviewer who has lamented that Christopher Tolkien has not explored the issue of Gollum's near repetenance. However, this is merely a minor complaint of what is most definitely the latest volume in the ongoing authoritative literary "dissection" of the world's greatest fantasy saga by the son of its author. This splendid tome will appeal not only to diehard Tolkien fans, but also serious students of literature interested in understanding Tolkien's thinking behind the writing of "The Lord of the Rings" saga.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another amazing job by Christopher Tolkien 10 Oct 1998
By olorin69@hotmail.com - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
In the eighth volume of The History of Middle Earth Christopher Tolkien shows us his father's next step in the preparation of LOTR. In this edition many of tbe central themes to the story as it was published came int being, such as the palantir and the addition of Faramir. This book takes us from the destruction of Isengard to the Lords of the West marching on Mordor. We are also once again treated to sketches and maps of such places as Orthanc, Dunharrow, and Minas Tirith. I recommend this book to all Tolkien fans.
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