J. R. R. Tolkien

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Celebrating Middle-earth edited by John G. West Jr
Untangling Tolkien by Michael W. Perry


Celebrating Middle-earth: The Lord of the Rings as a Defense of Western Civilization
John G. West Jr., Editor with articles by Janet Blumberg, Kerry Dearborn, Phillip Goggans, Peter Kreeft, Joseph Pearce, and John G. West Jr

In this book six Tolkien scholars comment on the literary, philosophical, political, and religious foundations of J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. The chapters are based on speeches given at the "Celebrating Middle Earth" conference, Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, Washington on November 9-10, 2001 and adapted by their authors for this book.

Much More on Celebrating Middle-earth (including a detailed table of contents)

ISBN: 1-58742-012-0 (paperback) and 1-58742-013-9 (hardback), 107 pages
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Untangling Tolkien: A Chronology and Commentary for The Lord of the Rings
by Michael W. Perry

Here is the book Tolkien fans have needed for half a century--a detailed, day-by-day, book-length chronology of J. R. R. Tolkien's complex tale. Whether you are a serious Tolkien fan or simply someone who enjoys reading the story over and over again, this is the book for you. It's the first totally new reference for The Lord of the Rings since the 1970s.

Beginning over 1400 years before the major events in Tolkien's epic, it describes, year-by-year, the amazing and imaginative background history that Tolkien created for his masterpiece. Then for the main narrative, it becomes a day-by-day reference, describing what each character does on that day and all the places where those events are described in Tolkien's writings. You can find out, for instance, what Merry and Pippin are doing as Sam prepares rabbit stew on the morning of March 7.

Probe deeper into Tolkien. See why someone as serious as Gandalf was interested in fun-loving Hobbits. Discover an exciting new plot, based on Tolkien's notes, that begins when Aragorn captures Gollum. Follow along as the Black Riders and Gandalf race for the Shire. Decide for yourself whether Sauron and the Ring have any ties to Hitler and Stalin. Explore what Tolkien believed about nature and technology.

A few facts illustrate how helpful this chronology is. Most of narrative is a deliberately confusing sea of next days and third days that leave readers as confused as the tale's main characters.The middle 60 percent of The Lord of the Rings gives the current date only once. In the narrative as a whole, the date is given only 23 times, or once for every 43 pages, and most of those come when the plot is moving slowly. That's why those who want to dig deeper and understand better what Tolkien was saying will find this book a must-have.

Much More on Untangling Tolkien (including a detailed table of contents)

ISBN: 1-58742-019-8 (paperback)
Amazon: Paperback
Amazon Canada:  Paperback
Amazon France:  Paperback
Amazon Germany:  Paperback
Amazon Japan:  Paperback
Amazon UK:  Paperback
Barnes & Noble:  Paperback
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Those who're looking for someone who writes like Tolkien may want to look into books by William Morris, a late-nineteenth writer who greatly influenced Tolkien.