Painstakingly restored from Tolkien's manuscripts and presented for the first time as a fully continuous and standalone story, the epic tale of The Children of Hurin will reunite fans of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings with Elves and Men, dragons and Dwarves, eagles and Orcs, and the rich landscape and characters unique to Tolkien. There are ...
Painstakingly restored from Tolkien's manuscripts and presented for the first time as a fully continuous and standalone story, the epic tale of The Children of Hurin will reunite fans of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings with Elves and Men, dragons and Dwarves, eagles and Orcs, and the rich landscape and characters unique to Tolkien. There are tales of Middle-earth from times long before The Lord of the Rings, and the story told in this book is set in the great country that lay beyond the Grey Havens in the West: lands where Treebeard once walked, but which were drowned in the great cataclysm that ended the First Age of the World. In that remote time Morgoth, the first Dark Lord, dwelt in the vast fortress of Angband, the Hells of Iron, in the North; and the tragedy of Turin and his sister Nienor unfolded within the shadow of the fear of Angband and the war waged by Morgoth against the lands and secret cities of the Elves. Their brief and passionate lives were dominated by the elemental hatred that Morgoth bore them as the children of Hurin, the man who had dared to defy and to scorn him to his face. Against them he sent his most formidable servant, Glaurung, a powerful spirit in the form of a huge wingless dragon of fire. Into this story of brutal conquest and flight, of forest hiding-places and pursuit, of resistance with lessening hope, the Dark Lord and the Dragon enter in direly articulate form. Sardonic and mocking, Glaurung manipulated the fates of Turin and Nienor by lies of diabolic cunning and guile, and the curse of Morgoth was fulfilled. The earliest versions of this story by J.R.R. Tolkien go back to the end of the First World War and the years that followed; but long afterwards, when The Lord of the Rings was finished, he wrote it anew and greatly enlarged it in complexities of motive and character: it became the dominant story in his later work on Middle-earth. But he could not bring it to a final and finished form. In this book Christopher Tolkien has constructed, after long study of the manuscripts, a coherent narrative without any editorial invention.
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The book is a joy to read and beautifully illustrated.
Read it in a cheerful mood. It is a dark book, full of pagan darkness and despair. There is greatness, but a doomed greatness---much like Greek tragedy.
It will help you understand the mood in the deep history of the LoTR. It is a harder read than the LoTR, but easier than the Silmarion. If you know the Silmarilon, you know a shorter version of this story.
Jan 9, 2009
Hurin Holds My Interest
This book gave me the impression Tolkein was thinking about the LOTR as he was writing . The narrative is tight and at times questioning, exploring, searching out the why. Well worth the time it takes to read.
Publishers Weekly, 2008-02-25 What could be more apropos than hiring the face of Sauron from The Lord of the Rings to read Tolkien's newly complete version of these pre-Rings tales? Christopher Lee, the British actor beloved for his role in Peter Jackson's trilogy as well as his numerous turns in Hammer fright films, reads Tolkien's Rings precursor as if still in full makeup. Booming and vaguely menacing, Lee sounds like Sauron around the campfire, entertaining his minions with a tale of adventure and woe. Even Lee cannot sound entirely convincing bellowing some of Tolkien's invented languages, but his reading is suitably ominous. Tolkien's son, Christopher, who edited his father's book, also contributes a preface and introduction he reads himself. His voice-phlegmy and rough-provides a taste of what it might have sounded like had the author himself been available to read his own work. Simultaneous release with the Houghton Mifflin hardcover (reviewed online). (Dec.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Publishers Weekly, 2007-04-16 Tolkien fans are sure to treasure this tale of Middle-earth's First Age, which appeared in incomplete forms in the posthumously published The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales. Those earlier books, also edited by Tolkien's son, Christopher, only hinted at the depth and power of the tragic story of T·rin and Ni?nor, the children of H·rin, the lord of Dor-l?min, who achieved renown for having confronted Morgoth, who was the master of Sauron, the manifestation of evil in the Lord of the Rings. The lengthy and fatiguing battle against Morgoth forms the backdrop for the moving account of the life of H·rin's eldest son, T·rin, a valiant but proud warrior whose all too human frailties augur an unhappy end. Perhaps Tolkien's most three-dimensional figure, T·rin flees from the elven kingdom where he has grown into manhood, sheltered from the forces of evil, after he's unjustly judged responsible for another's death. He hides his true identity as he begins a new life as leader of a band of outlaws, a choice that has dire consequences when he crosses paths with a family member after many years of separation. Deftly balancing thrilling battles with moments of introspection, Tolkien's vivid and gripping narrative reaffirms his primacy in fantasy literature. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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