WELCOME!

Since 1998, the simple goal for this 'unofficial' homepage for "The Lord of the Rings," by John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, is to encourage readers of all ages to take a journey to Middle-earth.

To best achieve this goal, I feel the best use for this site, is to carefully research the currently available editions of Tolkien's works, as well as guides, essays, and other related educational material, sort them all out into the sections listed on the right, hopefully making it as easy as possible to find these books, so that people can experience the peerless masterworks of J.R.R. Tolkien.

"If you want to know the story, you can read the book."

~ Sir Ian McKellen, "The Actors Studio"

If you have yet to read one of Tolkien's books, then I invite you to order a copy of Ballantine's popular Boxed 'Paperback' Collection of "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings." You will join millions of people, from all over the world, who have been changed forever by taking their first journey to Middle-earth.

Those who have already made the journey to Middle-earth, and hunger for more, you will enjoy reading "The Silmarillion," Tolkien's epic history of the First Age of Middle-earth, and "The Children of Húrin", the first complete book by Tolkien since the 1977 posthumous release of "The Silmarillion."

You can also download 'e-book' editions of "The Hobbit," "The Lord of the Rings," "The Silmarillion," and "The Children of Húrin".

These digital versions of Tolkien's works can be read on personal computers, smartphones, or tablets, but I really feel they are best read on dedicated devices like the Kindle.

PAGE NOTES:

A SELECTION FROM 'THE RED BOOK OF WESTMARCH'

NEWS, REVIEWS, UPDATES

  • "Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary"

    The translation of Beowulf by J.R.R. Tolkien was an early work, very distinctive in its mode, completed in 1926: he returned to it later to make hasty corrections, but seems never to have considered its publication. This edition is twofold, for there exists an illuminating commentary on the text of the poem by the translator himself, in the written form of a series of lectures given at Oxford in the 1930s; and from these lectures a substantial selection has been made, to form also a commentary on the translation in this book.

    From his creative attention to detail in these lectures there arises a sense of the immediacy and clarity of his vision. It is as if he entered into the imagined past: standing beside Beowulf and his men shaking out their mail-shirts as they beached their ship on the coast of Denmark, listening to the rising anger of Beowulf at the taunting of Unferth, or looking up in amazement at Grendel’s terrible hand set under the roof of Heorot.

    But the commentary in this book includes also much from those lectures in which, while always anchored in the text, he expressed his wider perceptions. He looks closely at the dragon that would slay Beowulf "snuffling in baffled rage and injured greed when he discovers the theft of the cup"; but he rebuts the notion that this is "a mere treasure story", "just another dragon tale". He turns to the lines that tell of the burying of the golden things long ago, and observes that it is "the feeling for the treasure itself, this sad history" that raises it to another level. "The whole thing is sombre, tragic, sinister, curiously real. The ‘treasure’ is not just some lucky wealth that will enable the finder to have a good time, or marry the princess. It is laden with history, leading back into the dark heathen ages beyond the memory of song, but not beyond the reach of imagination."

    Sellic Spell, a "marvellous tale", is a story written by Tolkien suggesting what might have been the form and style of an Old English folk-tale of Beowulf, in which there was no association with the "historical legends" of the Northern kingdoms.

    "Beowulf: A Translation and Commentary" is available in 'Hardcover' and 'Kindle' editions.

  • "The Hobbit: Illustrated Edition by Jemima Catlin"

    This new 'hardcover' edition features 150 illustrations by U.K. artist Jemima Catlin, and is reminiscent of books of the genre published in the early 1900s.

    "The Hobbit: Illustrated Edition by Jemima Catlin" is available in a 'Hardcover' edition.

  • "The Lord of the Rings 'Deluxe' Edition"

    This new edition of the Lord of the Rings has been released in a 'leatherette' binding and at a decent price.

    "The Lord of the Rings 'Deluxe' Edition" is available in a 'Leatherette' softcover edition.

Outside of the truly important items of interest to Tolkien fans that I post here, I'll post other news, reviews, and announcements, on An Unofficial Weblog for The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. I've also setup a 'Twitter' and 'Facebook' page where I'll post news and announcements to as well.

We're also proud to be the host of The Tolkien Forum. Founded in 1998, it is now one of the Internet's oldest message boards dedicated discussions and deliberations about the works of J.R.R. Tolkien.