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The Magical Worlds of the "Lord of the Rings": An Unauthorised Guide - A Treasury of Myths, Legends and Fascinating Facts Paperback – 1 Aug 2002
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About the Author
Formerly a head writer of television's "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" and an editorial director of HarperCollins, David Colbert is also the author of the Eyewitness history series. A graduate of Brown University, he studied anthropology and mythology and has spent much of his life in libraries. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Colbert does a fairly good job of giving us insights into the myths (Norse legends), literature ("Beowulf," the book "Babbitt," Shakespeare's influence on faeries and elves), religion (the source of Galadriel: Mary, mother of Jesus), and Tolkien's own opinions at the time (industrialization destroying the beautiful countryside where he grew up).
Colbert makes some rather obvious errors (usually linked with the "Silmarillion" rather than "Lord of the Rings"), but nothing too awful. Overall he does a pretty good job of addressing common questions like "How Many Languages Did Tolkien Invent?", "Who Was Tolkien's First Dark Lord?" or "How Did Orcs Get So Ugly?". He writes breezily and conversationally, as if addressing a bunch of listeners.
Does "Magical Worlds" stand above other Tolkien guides? Nah. It doesn't even stand up to some guides. It's a pretty good guide for entry-level fans, but long-time fans will already know much of this material, so they will probably not get much from Colbert's revelations.
However, fans who are new to Middle-Earth and who don't know a lot of the background will probably find this invaluable. If you have only seen the movies, or are only just tackling the books, this is a good place to start answering your questions.
"Magical Worlds of Lord of the Rings" is a pretty solid beginner's guide to "Lord of the Rings" and its background material. New to Middle-Earth? Then you may just find your answers here.
This irresistible book is a glorious tribute to the most amazing writer and to also the film adaptations of one of his most popular and widely recognized works. It is stacked with insights and is a treasure trove of information on the characters, people and places within one of the most enchanting and extraordinary worlds ever created. Complete with illustrations, index, bibliography and introduction this book is something that should be added to any Tolkien collection. Fanatics of the films I feel will appreciate this book perhaps slightly more so than the intransigent devotees of middle-earth's extensive history or the members of the Tolkien Society, but it does not do his work any discredit whatsoever but rather it merely skims the surface on part of his masterpiece. If you really want to know more about JRR Tolkien's creation then I would suggest delving into those books by Christopher Tolkien about its history, but if you are keen to know more about The Lord of the Rings in particular and the spectacular three films, then this is a book to read. There are many questions in this book that I have always wanted to ask, such as are the Undying Lands heaven? Or what is the true origin of the word Hobbit? David Colbert's writing style is truly engaging, drawing you into the page with his passion and enthusiasm on the subject that captures your mind instantly drawing you in like a spell.
If you love The Lord of the Rings and its author, and the three exceptional films based on his work then I would urge you to add `the magical worlds of the lord of the rings' to your book collection.
Nevertheless, this is a good resource to know a little more about the important literature (Beowulf) and Mr Tolkien's philosophy and beliefs that shaped the Middle Earth saga.
I found this a very useful book, full of facts and things that I would never have dreamt that linked in with Tolkien. The author of this book certainly seems to have done his homework and in result has produced a book that is very interesting.
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