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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Roverandom - Not Niddle Earth???
Reading Roverandom, by J.R.R. Tolkien, was like opening a dusty box of childhood memories left under my bed. It has a sort of playful side to it. When Rover was journeying to the moon on the back of a seagull named Mew, and almost traveled an actual road in the sky to get there. Tolkien dragged you into the plot by drawing you in as a part of his outrageous world, giving...
Published on 24 Jan 2004 by N. M. D. Lancaster

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3.0 out of 5 stars A nice little children's story -- but Tolkien's done better!, February 7, 2001
Granted, this is a book written for Tolkien's children, and it does contain some nice little word-play elements -- but lets face it: This is not a literary masterpiece -- but niether is it trash either. With Tolkien's children's fiction, with the exception of THE HOBBIT, its not so much the quality of it but the fact that it exists. These activities culiminated in the...
Published 19 months ago by Mike London


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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Roverandom - Not Niddle Earth???, 24 Jan 2004
By 
This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
Reading Roverandom, by J.R.R. Tolkien, was like opening a dusty box of childhood memories left under my bed. It has a sort of playful side to it. When Rover was journeying to the moon on the back of a seagull named Mew, and almost traveled an actual road in the sky to get there. Tolkien dragged you into the plot by drawing you in as a part of his outrageous world, giving you a sense of belonging. For instance, he'd mention the names of the flowers on the moon, as if it were nothing and as if they were common knowledge. Fairbells, tinklebells, ringaroses, pennywhistles, tintrumpets, feathergrasses, fairy-fiddlestrings, etc... Roverandom was short and extremely fast-pace. Tolkien consumed big slices of time like homemade bread. He would say, "Rover and the Sea-dog had many more adventures under the ocean, but we can save those for another time." It left a lot of room for your imagination to run wild. Strangely, it was very entertaining. When Rover is under the ocean and causes the sea serpent to awaken on accident, his shy little attitude makes you sad for him. But, of course, good books are the ones that make you feel something. They are the ones that make you feel like you're the main character without ever having been in their position.
This little novel is about a little dog that goes on many strange and magical adventures. It starts off with Rover biting Artaxerxes's trousers. Artaxerxes is an old grumpy wizard who just happened to be strolling by, and some say it wasn't coincidence. The old wizard become furious with Rover and turns him into a miniature toy puppy. Rover goes through many bizarre complications trying to get back to his original form. The entire journey not only turns out to be a lesson for Artaxerxes and his anger-control, but for Rover as well.
Despite all the wild journeys, the uncanny characters, the abnormal locations, and Rover's involuntary arbitrary movement, I found that the best part of Roverandom was remembering how to be a kid again. Fantasy books tend to do that to me, and this was most definitely one of those enchanted stories. It is the kind that you can curl up with on the couch, and ponder all the strange and magical adventures you've had over the years
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars He's a rover, 28 Feb 2006
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
For a little kid, losing a favorite toy is downright traumatic. So in 1925, when four-year-old Michael lost his little toy dog on the beach, fantasy author J.R.R. Tolkien made up a story to comfort his son. It explained away the loss of the toy, and wove a magical story around a little dog named Rover.

Rover is an ordinary little puppy near the seaside in England, until he runs into a grumpy old man and ends up biting off part of his pants. The old man happens to be a wizard (Artaxerxes by name), and promptly transforms Rover into a toy dog (and no, I don't mean a tiny dog -- I mean a real toy). Rover subsequently gets picked up and sold to some little boys (presumably the Tolkien kids).

Fortunately, Rover encounters another magical being, a crusty, kindly sand-wizard named Psamathos. That wizard, in turn, gets Rover (who is renamed Roverandom) flown to the moon, where he spends time with the Man in the Moon and his winged dog Rover. And then he's heading off to encounter a talking whale, a mer-dog, a sea serpent -- and a dragon.

Like the vastly underrated "Farmer Giles of Ham," "Roverandom" is a charming little bit of whimsy. No deep themes, no epic clashes, not even really a villain. The writing is charming and magical, with phrases like "There was a cold wind blowing off the North Star" sprinkled through it. It almost gives the feeling of being in another world. Best of all, in the middle of the book are Tolkien's own illustrations, cute little drawings and ethereal paintings.

Rover is well-named, since his adventures are all over the map and don't really progress from one to the other. It's merely a cute little dog roaming over the moon, the ocean, and the land, conversing with shrimps and bothering wizards. He's an outspoken little guy, but likeable. The grumpy wizards are also excellently done, reminiscent of Gandalf.

While "Roverandom" is a book aimed at children, adults may enjoy the whimsical humor and beautiful writing. A charming and timeless story.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Randomly Rover with Roverandom, 28 Nov 2002
This story is a wonderful tale that can be enjoyed by all ages. The writing is more similar to "The Hobbit" rather than "Lord of the Rings", although it is less descriptive, as it was originally made for a small child. It is a wonderful bedtime story that can be read to little children (and it even explains how dreams are made) and could probably be read by an intelligent 8-10 year old. Teens and adults will enjoy the whole-hearted cuteness of the story as Rover "randomly roves" through many wonderous places :)
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Story telling at it's best., 21 Oct 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
A delightful childrens story about a dog who bit the trousers of a wizard and is then changed into a toy. His travels and adventures as he tries to find the wizard are wonderous.
Tolkien gives funny and magical explanations for most of natures normal happenings.
Couldn't put the book down and sadened that it ended.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Quite entertaining, 5 Jun 2003
By 
Kurt A. Johnson (Marseilles, IL USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
In 1925, during a vacation on the Yorkshire coast, J.R.R. Tolkien's four-year-old son Michael lost his favorite toy dog. To console Michael, his father spun out a tale of where the toy dog had come from and where he went. This is that story.
A young dog named Rover is happily playing with his yellow rubber ball when he meets a cross old man. Rover sends the man on his way, tearing his trousers in the process. Sadly for Rover, the old man is Artaxerxes, a powerful wizard from Persia. (When Artaxerxes had become lost and asked for directions, someone had become confused and gave him directions to Pershore!) Artaxerxes turns Rover into a toy dog, and sends him off. This is the start of an epic quest for Rover, who meets a sand-wizard, the Man-in-the-Moon, the great dragons that live on the moon, the many merfolk living at the bottom of the ocean, and a delightful little boy.
This gentle story is quite entertaining. The story is wonderful in a slow, gentle way that seems irreproducible today. It is great for children. Complete with a group of illustrations drawn by the great J.R.R. himself, and some notes at the end to explain certain names and so forth, this is a great buy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!, 3 Jun 2007
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G. Wake "gregwake" (Newcastle, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
This is great little book which I found a pleasant and entertaining read. There is nothing very special about it but the illustrations are nice, if sparse, and the story is good and not too complicated. It is easy to read out loud and shouldn't be too hard for a competent child to read by themselves. The only negative thing about it is that there aren't more stories of the same ilk from Tolkein.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Roverandom, 3 Jun 2007
This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
An absolute ace book. Follows the adventures of Rover, a dog who is turned into a toy by a wizard and can only move by night. 1 of tolkiens first books.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Roverandom, 18 April 2014
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This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
Very impressed for a used book. It came in *almost* pristine condition. The book itself is beautifully illustrated and the font-size was very good. If you're a fan of Tolkien or are trying to get younger(5-11) people into his litreature, this is the perfect book, as it will, hopefully, keep up the momemntum for them to enjoy The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. Overall, a very good book indeed.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fine reading, 28 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
I was surprised by the enchanting beauty of Tolkiens storytelling, that shines through even through a little story like this.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A nice little children's story -- but Tolkien's done better!, February 7, 2001, 10 Sep 2012
This review is from: Roverandom (Paperback)
Granted, this is a book written for Tolkien's children, and it does contain some nice little word-play elements -- but lets face it: This is not a literary masterpiece -- but niether is it trash either. With Tolkien's children's fiction, with the exception of THE HOBBIT, its not so much the quality of it but the fact that it exists. These activities culiminated in the composistion of THE HOBBIT. When Allen & Unwin accepted it for publication and it became a runaway hit, they wanted more about 'hobbits'. This book, MR. BLISS, THE LOST ROAD, and THE SILMARILLION (OF BEREN & LUTHIEN, the poetic form, was submitted with perhaps FARMER GILES as well)found its way to the publishing house in 1937. But Sir Stanely Unwin wanted not these but a hobbit sequel, of which we all know what happened with that.

This being said, ROVERANDOM shows Tolkien delighting in the position of a story teller for his children. The love and warmth shows clearly in these pages, and while its not the best thing ever written, it does have its charms. Largely, however, this work is for Tolkien completists, and by and large will not win over any fans. But if you looking for a book to read to your younger children and you want it to be Tolkien, this is a good choice. But if they're a little older, give 'em the real meat and introduce them to that lovable Bilbo Baggins. Its worth a look, but not necessarily a second or third.
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