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The Book of Lost Tales 2 (The History of Middle-Earth, Vol. 2)viii, 391 pp. "The Book of Lost Tales was the first major work of imagination by J.R.R. Tolkien, begun in 1916, when he was twenty-five years old, and left incomplete several years later. It stands at the beginning of the entire conception of Middle-earth and Valinor, for the Lost Tales were the first form of thThe Book of Lost Tales 2 (The History of Middle-Earth, Vol. 2)viii, 391 pp. "The Book of Lost Tales was the first major work of imagination by J.R.R. Tolkien, begun in 1916, when he was twenty-five years old, and left incomplete several years later. It stands at the beginning of the entire conception of Middle-earth and Valinor, for the Lost Tales were the first form of the myths and legends that came to be called The Silmarillion. Embedded in English legend and association, they are set in the narrative frame of the great westward voyage of a mariner named Eriel (or AElfwine). His destination is Tol Eressea, the Lonely Isle where Elves dwell; from them he learns their true history, the Lost Tales of Elfinesse. The Tales include the earliest accounts of Gods and Elves, Dwarves, Balrogs, and Orcs; of the Silmarils and the Two Trees of Valinor; of Nargothrond and Gondolin; of the geography and cosmography of their invented world. The Book of Lost Tales is published in two volumes. The first contains the Tales of Valinor; and this second past includes Beren and Luthien, Turin and the Dragon, and the only full narratives of the Necklace of the Dwarves and the Fall of Gondolin. Each tale is followed by a commentary, together with associated poems, and each volume contains extensive information on names and vocabulary of the earliest Elvish languages. Additional books in this series will extend the history of Middle-earth as it was refined and enlarged in later years and will include the long Lays of Beleriand, the Ambarkanta or Shape of the World, the Lhammas or Account of Tongues, annals, maps, and many other previously unpublished writings of J.R.R. Tolkien."Keywords: FANTASY SCIENCE FICTION HISTORY MIDDLE EARTH JRR TOLKIEN BOOK OF LOST TALES...

Title : The Book of Lost Tales, Part Two
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The Book of Lost Tales, Part Two Reviews

  • Terry
    2018-12-04 05:13

    In the Book of Lost Tales, volumes 1 and 2, we have a more or less full picture of the earliest work Tolkien did in the development of his personal mythology that was to grow into the tales of Middle Earth. It was a mythology meant to provide his country England with something he felt it sorely needed, a foundation myth, and it was a vehicle which allowed him to explore and expand upon his own fascination with the world and stories of Faery and his love for the invented languages of his youth. The frame of the entire mythology at this point centred on the character of an English mariner (initially called Eriol and later Aelfwine each with varying origin stories) who was shipwrecked upon the isle of Tol Eressëa, the last bastion of the Elves who have all but fled the mortal world. Here are recounted to him the ‘lost tales’ of the Elves from prior to their departure from the wider world of men. While it always remained the case that Tolkien envisioned his Middle-Earth stories to be tales about the earliest, unknown histories of our own world as opposed to stories set on some completely alien fantasy world, the two Book of Lost Tales volumes really point out just how strongly Tolkien initially envisioned this link to be. In the first volume we were presented with some of the more cosmogonic myths: stories of the Valar and the creation of the world, the creation of the two Trees of Valinor and the Silmarils, the creation of the sun and moon, and the ultimate exile of the Elves from Valinor to the wider world. In the second volume things get a little closer to the ground as we hear tales of heroes and their deeds in their attempt to fight against the forces of Melko who would overthrow all that is good and beautiful in the world. I have to admit that volume 2 had a bumpy start for me with the Tales of Beren & Tinúviel and Turambar & the Foalókë being distinctly inferior to what they were to become in their fuller, more developed forms. In Beren and Luthien two things stood out as road blocks to my enjoyment: Beren as first envisioned was actually an elf of the Noldor and to me this robs the tale of his love of the immortal Tinúviel of much of its tragic grandeur, though it must be admitted that some does still remain; added to that was the fact that Melko’s lieutenant in the tale, and the main opponent to the heroes, was not Sauron of the Ainur and lord of the isle of werewolves, but Tevildo Prince of Cats! It might just be me, but a giant house cat (no matter how large and mean) is a slightly less intriguing villain than one of the greatest of the gods. As I noted in my review of book 1, Tolkien was still working within a model that was much more based on traditional ‘fairy tales’ than what his stories of the First Age of Middle-Earth were to become so this element isn’t exactly unexpected, just not my particular cuppa. As to Turambar, there wasn’t anything specific I could point to as the deciding factor in my relative lack of enthusiasm, but having read what this tale was to become it certainly pales in comparison. For me that can pretty much sum up the points at which I was disappointed in both volumes: these are much paler, thinner, and in some ways shadowy versions of the tales I know. That being said, they have the virtue of being able to show me just how much the constant work and revision, the lifetime of unceasing development, love and thought that went into them truly turned what were inspired, but limited stories into things that truly were comparable to the mythic workings of a people. The depth and reality of the tales of Middle-Earth all started here with something much smaller and simpler, but which would prove to be the seeds of something so much greater. The layers that one can see were built upon these first canvasses give a fascinating glimpse into a creative process that was truly monumental.So on to what I did like in this volume: the tale of the Fall of Gondolin was almost all I could have hoped for. While I still weep at the unrealized potential of the rewrite to this story that Tolkien had started but abandoned far too early as presented in Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-Earth, I at least was able to see the story of Tuor and his flight to the doomed city of Gondolin just as it is about to be overcome by the forces of Melko in a complete, and I must say rather satisfying, version. Tied in with this is the story of the Nauglafring, or the necklace of the Dwarves, which in itself is a rousingly Germanic tale of greed, curses, and doom that also allows for two of the great love stories of Tolkien’s mythology to this point (that of Beren and Tinúviel on the one hand and of Tuor and Idril on the other) to dovetail into each other and become the genesis for the tale of Eärendel which was in many ways the very heart of Tolkien’s mythology from the beginning. Eärendel himself was the child of Tuor and Idril who falls in love with Beren & Tinúviel’s granddaughter Elwing and whose great mission is to be the only mariner able to sail to the land of Valinor. Interestingly in some early versions of the tale as presented here Eärendel is sometimes either unable to make his way to Valinor or finds that his journey there proved unnecessary and ultimately this is another case where Tolkien’s later development of the tale proved to be more satisfying than what we initially find, but it is still an intriguing (and more importantly a fuller) glimpse into what would otherwise be little more than some bare bones references in later works. The final chapter of the volume is made up of scattered notes and poems that relate explicitly to the frame narrative and the life story of the mariner Eriol/Aelfwine. To me the greatest value these fragments hold is in showing how strongly Tolkien initially wanted to tie in his tales of Faery with the history of our own world (and specifically with England). I myself don’t worry too much about this aspect of Tolkien’s work, but it was obviously hugely important to him. Even in the later development of the tales of Middle-Earth which seem rather distant from any kind of mythological history of England we can see that the ‘historical’ element remains: specifically in the frame narrative of the ‘Red Book of Westmarch’ which lies as the pseudo-historical source of all of the published tales of Tolkien.All in all while a bit uneven, this book gave some intriguing glimpses into Tolkien’s art, especially in places where a later development of a given tale was either never done or where what does exist is only fragmentary. Definitely something of primary interest to the Tolkien aficionado.

  • Shadowdenizen
    2018-12-08 04:14

    Finished at last! While I'm Tolkien/Middle Earth enthusiast, and this book is generally pretty insightful about the creation and mythology of the Elder Days, I found it a bit of a slog, honestly.However, this book is (almost) redeeemed by the bits on the Fall of Gondolin (which is pretty compelling stuff!) and the Nauglarung (Necklace of the Dwarves.)I'm hoping my enthusiam for the series stays high, overall; I'm diving right into Book 3 ,but if that's a slog, too, a break may be in order after that.

  • Jay
    2018-12-05 02:03

    This is the second in the set of five books in which J.R.R. Tolkien's son, Christopher, has collected and edited his father's unpublished works--or in several cases, unpublished earlier versions of stories that later were published in different form.This volume consists of:* The Tale of Tinúviel, a much longer and much different version than is published in the Silmarillion as "The Tale of Beren and Lúthien." While many of the elements of the story here are interesting, I do like the published version better--for one thing, its plot is much tighter and easier to follow.* Turambar and the Foalókë, an earlier telling of the story of Turin Turambar from the Silmarillion. Again, the earlier version published here is much longer, and much more rambling. Most of the essential plot points are the same, or similar, though there are a few major differences (such a Turin and the outlaws' encounter with Mim the Dwarf and his sons); but the edited published version is a much better read.* The Fall of Gondolin--this, now, is a masterpiece, and a shame it's not as widely known as some of the Professor's other works. The version in the Silmarillion is much shorter. The version here gives great detail about the layout and organization of the hidden city of Gondolin; the various military units that defended it (down to details of heraldry and uniforms); and the ebb and flow of battle when the forces of Melko discovered the location of the city and forced their way through its defenses. It's a gripping tale beautifully told.* The Nauglafring, or the Necklace of the Dwarves. This is a chronologically direct follow-on to the Fall of Gondolin, describing the flight of a handful of survivors from the sack of that city. It's unpolished and rambling, and apparently went through many revisions, and it's hard to know which details Tolkien eventually meant to be canonical.* The Tale of Earendël, an earlier and much harder-to-follow version of the Earendil the Mariner story and poems from the Silmarillion and LOTR. In places the narrative here becomes almost incomprehensible, and Earendël's pergrinations all over the oceans between Beleriand (although it is not named as such) and Tol Eressëa and Valinor (also not named as such) are well nigh impossible to follow.* The History of Eriol or Aelfwine and the End of the Tales, which is something even the most devout Tolkien fan (I am one) will be glad to hear by this point. This section mainly deals with how Tolkien originally intended the Lonely Island of Tol Eressëa to be England, but the thread of reasoning slips back and forth from actual terrestrial geography to various incarnations of Middle Earth geography and back again, that even having just read it I am challenged to summarize it.I don't blame Christopher for the mess that most of these chapter are. He was working with (sometimes literally) scraps of paper with his father's scribblings on them, or manuscripts that had been written in pencil, then erased and overwritten in ink, then typed but then emended by hand. His mission was to set out the evolution of his father's conceptions in chronological order, then present the most evolved version as his father might have wanted it published; but in order to show that evolution, he has by necessity included so many versions of names and events and places and altered plots that it becomes an utter chore to read, and to try to remember who and what is where and when.I'm glad I read this book just so I can claim to be a "Tolkien scholar" of the lowest order, but unless I ever need to look up some obscure fact--or enjoy "The Fall of Gondolin" again--I'm relieved to be through it. Sorry, Professor, and sorry, Christopher.

  • Dru
    2018-11-18 06:50

    This will be my 12-volume write-up of the entire series "The History of Middle Earth".--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------This series is ONLY for the hardcore Tolkien fanatic. Predominantly written by JRR's son, based on JRR's notes on the creation of The Silmarilion and The Lord of the Rings (much less on The Hobbit). It is somewhat interesting to see the evolution of the story (for example, "Strider" was originally conceived as a Hobbit (one of those who "went off into the blue with Gandalf" as alluded to in The Hobbit). But the downside to this is that it isn't very fun to read. You can only read yet another version of Beren and Luthien so many times before you're tired of seeing the miniscule changes from one version to the next.So, overall, I slogged through this over about a year. I'd say it was worth it in the end for someone like me who loves Tolkien and his entire created world of Arda (and Ea in general). But I'll never re-read them. They come off too much as seeming like Christopher Tolkien just bundled every scrap of paper he could find, rather than thinning them down into a logical consistency.

  • Ahmad Sharabiani
    2018-11-29 01:08

    The Book of Lost Tales, Part Two (The History of Middle-Earth #2), J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (Editor)

  • Schuyler
    2018-12-06 01:09

    While The Book of Lost Tales 2 encompasses 6 tales, I'm going to spend this review focusing on two. Several of them are early drafts of tales (Beren and Luthen, and The Tale of Turambar) that are covered in more detail in The Silmarillion and The Children of Hurin. You may find it interesting to compare the first draft to the later ones, and how Tolkien's ideas grew over time. But if you're not a die-hard Tolkien aficionado, then I wouldn't start with this book. It's a tough nut to crack, and some of the later stories, where we have less and less structure to work with, can be mind-numbing with the effort they require to read.But two tales in particular linger in my mind with fondness as I shut this book. One is The Fall of Gondolin, and the other is The History of Eriol or AElfwine.The Fall of GondolinThe Fall of Gondolin was the biggest reason I started with Part 2 of Lost Tales instead of Part 1. Gondolin was a hidden city in Middle Earth, the one that could always elude and withstand the evil war of Melko. But even Gondolin fell in the tragic war between Melko and the elves, and its fall was heartstirring and glorious. The last stand of Turgon on the walls, the valiant wisdom of Idril, wife of Tuor, the tragic shield brother action of Tor and Ecthelion as they defended each other in battle, and best of all, sightings of Legolas and Glorfindel in the same story, (two of my favorite elves) make for an epic combination.The History of Eriol or AElfwine The history of AElfwine lingers with a tugging of the heartstrings. The beginning half as Tolkien tried to fit this legend into English history is a bit slow and unbelievable, but a later draft of the legend that doesn't contain as much English history is a stirring, grand tale. At the peril of life, AElfwine and his companions sail in search of the island of the elves. In a heart-wrenching twist of fate, most of them catch a glimpse of it. But only one man attains elf land, and the others are blown in the mist all the way back home. The tragedy leaves you breathless.You might be wondering, is The Book of Lost Tales for me? Here's a good way to go with Tolkien's books:Read The Hobbit. Everyone reads the Hobbit first. Then read Lord of the Rings. If you love LOTR so much your soul starts singing in the language of elves (a normal and natural reaction) then go on to The Silmarillion. Once you're done with Sil, if you're still interested, then feel free to delve into Lost Tales and The Children of Hurin.Why this order, Schuyler? Well, because that's the way I did it. But in all seriousness, I think that's a pretty decent order to go in. I'm a sucker for punishment, so I'm going on to The Unfinished Tales next, and hopefully I'll read Lost Tales Part 1 someday.I think one particular reason why I appreciate reading a tough Tolkien book is the mental exercise it requires. You use a lot of the same skills you would use to read real history, so it translates well. Plus, starting and finishing it is like starting and finishing an intense physical workout. It exercises different parts of your brain (genealogies, geography, and history) and keeps it sharp.So if you want a mind puzzle, or some glorious moments of valor and heart-wrenching, then give Book of Lost Tales 2 a try.

  • Silvana
    2018-11-14 07:14

    Well, the reason I read this book is because Richard Armitage, the actor who plays Thorin in The Hobbit, has read it. If he is fluent in Tolkien lores, then why can't I? :-)The story that I wanted to read is actually the Nauglafring (Necklace of the Dwarves). But it was interesting as well to read a more thorough version (at least from the version told in The Silmarillion) of Beren-Luthien's and Turin Turambar's stories. I found out that Beren was a gnome (don't freak out yet, gnome here apparently means that he was one of the Noldors) and that he was helpless without Luthien went to rescue him and left her kingdom shattered, broke her parents' hearts and her brother lost. Spoiled brat. Melian should have put her girdle around that girl. Anyway, Turin's story is awesome, it's always is. Children of Hurin, if you haven't read it then fly you fools to the nearest book store! Sad, extremely harrowing. Tolkien at his best.And then came the story of Nauglafring. A bit shorter that what I expected but alright. It explained to me the origin of the enmity between the elves and the dwarves. Both sides were wrong, that's the gist. The elves were ungrateful SOBs and the dwarves clearly overreacted. Alliance with the orcs? Seriously, guys.Then the book went downhill for me. The Tale of Earendil was really boring. Or maybe because there were just so many versions of it in one chapter so it became hellishly repetitive. And I still didn't understand why he got separated from Elwing and why she drowned. The weirdest part from the book to me is not the scholarly remarks and analysis given by Christopher Tolkien on various subjects from etymology of names to different versions of poems, but it was the fact that Elves became fairies. So while Men were getting more evil and stuff, Elves were fading, became transparent and smaller, until finally Men could not see them. I had a feeling by then that there would be some connection made with the real (our) world. And I was right. So apparently Tol Eressea is now the modern day England! Weird huh? So that confirms the theory that Middle Earth is now the modern day continental Europe. Ha! Can you guess which country is Hobbitton? Mordor? Anyway, this is not a book for everyone. You have to at least read The Silmarillion first. And you gotta love Tolkien alot.

  • Regitze
    2018-11-12 01:58

    The story of Lúthien Tinúviel and Beren is probably one of my favourite of Tolkien's stories. And for that reason alone, I love this book. It presents several version of the story, esentially the same but with important and characteristic differences. And a different version still it the one found in The Silmarillion, but more on that book.I think, on the whole, I like the stories in this book better than the stories in part I. But they're all connected and I think it is an important strength to this entire story of characters telling each other important myths and tales from their Peoples. You really can't read part II, without having read part I, I believe. At least you get a very different persepctive on the tales of part II, if you haven't read part I.I think the most interesting stories in part II is the ones that aren't written. The last two tales that is, they're mostly notes and outlines and plans of Tolkien's for stories he wanted to write. Some exist in the form of poems, some don't. But really, they're ridiculously interesting. And if I remember correctly, feature in The Silmarillion, but as it has been years, I can't say for sure.Christopher Tolkien does a marvelous job of stitching the tales together from various manuscripts of his father's, J . R. R. Tolkien, and with the help of a well-structured note section following each tale, as well as a commentary manages to bring back a large portion of the stories that J. R. R. Tolkien wrote in the trenches of WWI. And which was, many many years later, to become The Silmarillion, simplified: the origin on Middle-earth as we know it from LotR and the history of the elves. And thus, reading these books has made me want to reread The Silmarillion, but that probably is a way off. NB: when I simply write "Tolkien", I of course refer to J. R. R. Tolkien.For more thoughts on Lost Tales, see my review of Part I here.Also reviewed together on my blog Bookish Love Affair.

  • Nicole
    2018-12-10 04:02

    Things I will never tire of:1. Luthien being the biggest badass ever, no matter how many ways Tolkien writes it (she's the best character he's ever written- fight me if you think otherwise lol)2. Turin and his family making the worst possible life choices (along with a reminder of why I lol every time someone says that Tolkien is 'too tame' or 'too PG' for them).The Fall of Gondolin is my favourite piece that Tolkien has written. I'm not 100% sure why, but I find it fascinating and spectacular- the action, the imagery, the tone, the politics, the characters...all of it. I'm so glad we got this full version of it.I love that he apparently ran out of names by the time he got to LOTR, and just recycled some from older works (can you imagine Gimli's horror if he realized his name first went to an Elf)?I'm so very happy that the characterization of the Dwarves was improved by the finished copy, because good lord was it terrible here. Cringe worthy terrible, TBH.I legitimately love these books because there's no way to totally make out Tolkien canon, which means that I can just kind of choose things I love the most and go with that. I also fully admit that I think the whole 'this is the secret history of Europe/England' thing is lame and I just ignore it. The last chapter (Story of Elfwine) just reminds me why.

  • Othy
    2018-11-11 01:45

    Though I liked the first Book of Lost Tales better, this one was still amazing. The stories in it not only give depth to the Silmarillion and The Lord of the Rings, but also as JRR Tolkien himself AND what being a human and an artist really means. Some of the work of both prose and poetry in this volume is equal in beauty to the most wonderfully beautiful pieces Tolkien himself published. Anyone who enjoys writing in any form should read these tales.

  • D-day
    2018-12-09 01:46

    I will give the same warning as Part One, The Book of Lost Tales is not for the casual Tolkien fan. These are early drafts of stories that later became the SilmarillionPart Two of the Tales contains the more epic stories starting with the story of Beren & Luthien here called the Tale of Tinuviel. The earliest conception of the story is quite interesting; Beren is an Elf and Sauron (here known as Tevildo) is a giant evil cat!The second tale is Turambar and the Foaloke and is the earliest version of the Turin saga, and again very interesting in its early conception.The Fall of Gondolin is really the most interesting part of the Lost Tales as it is the only full length version of this story Tolkien ever wrote. It is also one of the first stories Tolkien ever wrote and it is astonishing and extremely unfortunate that he never was able to finish an updated full version in subsequent decades. He did begin a revised version that was subsequently published in Unfinished Tales, but this was only completed to the point where Tuor comes to Gondolin. So this early version is the only version telling in detail the marriage of Tuor and Idril, the treachery of Maeglin, the sacking of the city, the death of Turgon, and the flight of the Exiles. The tale regarding the Necklace of the Dwarves is very fascinating for Tolkien’s initial conception of Dwarves. Here they are portrayed as somewhat more morally dubious than the gruff, yet lovable characters from The Hobbit. Although not actually completed even in this early version, it remains the fullest account of the Nauglamir and the Fall of Doriath.The next tale is the Tale of Earendel, and this is very sad, for what should be the climactic story of the Silmarillion was never written in full, even here in the Lost Tales there is only alternate outlines and brief summariesThe final tale is the Tale of Aelfwine. This is the conclusion of the framing story (in this version explicitly tying the Tales to English history) that Tolkien, correctly in my opinion, was to abandon.So a treasure for the Tolkien fan, interesting for the details it contains but oh so frustrating for the fact that there is so much here that was never completed, which will be a common refrain from me for my reviews of all the subsequent volumes of the History of Middle Earth

  • Nonethousand Oberrhein
    2018-12-06 01:15

    Heroics of a young authorAs the narrative frame of The Cottage of Lost Play continues from the first volume, it is time to “listen” to the tales of the big heroes of the First Age. Far more naive and chaotic, while at the same time more enthralling and sparkling than the Silmarillion’s mature storytelling, this earlier account of the known legends sheds a light on Tolkien’s working process and allows a different perspective of some those famous characters. Aside from the studious dive into the myth building, the reader will be delighted and surprised as the narrative frame itself twists out of shape and bridges the fantastic geography of Tol-Eressea with the far more mundane of the British Isles. A transition not to be missed!

  • Marko Vasić
    2018-11-24 03:54

    If part one of The Book of Lost Tales was dedicated to Valar and to the World creation concepts, second part is dedicated to 6 pivotal stories for The Silmarillion substance. I enjoyed in the first version of the story of Beren and Luthien, where Sauron is mentioned for the first time, but in form of demon Tevildo - prince of cats. Also, tale about Turin is slightly different than the one in final version. The story about the fall of Gondolin is narrated in all its majesty and details. Also, full version of the creation of the Nauglafring (i.e. Nauglamir) is present in this book, as well as slaying of king Tinwelint (Thingol), that is different than the one in final version, and more logical and consecutive.

  • Ben
    2018-11-18 06:51

    I want to once again point you to Corey Olsen (The Tolkien Professor) and his podcast that walked me through this book (in 2 or 4 hour long lectures for each chapter).I am constantly amazed at how thorough Christopher Tolkien's analysis of his father's work is. It's hard to imagine anyone being as complete and meticulous as him -- he may even have surpassed his father!The Fall of Gondolin was fascinating. The different conceptions of Elves, Dwarfs, and Humans is fascinating. And it was fun to watch JRR Tolkien play with the idea of making Tol Eressëa into England, or the other way around.Next up (after a break): The Unfinished Tales!

  • Megan Chrisler
    2018-12-07 04:52

    I bought this book because I like LOTR, and I wanted to have a better understanding of Middle Earth history. You will get that in this book. However, the style is closer to Old English, so it's very boring to the average reader. So, if you enjoy Old English literature or are a hardcore fan of LOTR, I recommend this book. If you don't like Old English and only like LOTR for its fantasy elements, don't bother.

  • Andreas Schmidt
    2018-11-24 23:00

    Mah.Francamente questo "corpus tolkeniano" si poteva tranquillamente evitare. Posso capire il senso di voler dare uno sfondo a tutte le vicende de Il signore degli Anelli, ma pubblicare anche le bozze scritte da Tolkien (il padre) e dargli una veste grafica da romanzo finito è semplicemente una operazione commerciale.

  • Shaene Ragan
    2018-12-11 06:12

    As with Part I, this book has several incomplete tales with only bare sketches to finish it off, but that can be ignored due to the wealth of information about his world that Tolkien reveals. For this reason it is a must read for Tolkien fans, especially for fans of Legolas Greenleaf as this contains his first appearance in Middle Earth.

  • Patricia
    2018-12-03 00:57

    This covers the work Tolkien did to create the mythology and history of Middle Earth. While it is interesting, informative, and does enhance one's understand of LOR, I don't think this book is for everyone.

  • Julia Rasera
    2018-12-07 05:52

    in this book i read about so many heartbreaking moments, and it's dear to my heart just like the silmarillion. I think that the best part of this book is the strong relationship between Beleg and Turin, if you love this characters you should really read this book.

  • Steve Cran
    2018-11-11 00:00

    Let us say that over all this is a great tome. The writing by JRR Tolkien for the most part is excellent, with a few passages that are a bit of a challenge to understand. The problem is not with JRR Tolkien's writing but rather with the extensive notes written by his son, Christopher Tolkien. Ok yeah I get it he want to explain the differences between the these rough versions of the story and the official in the Simarillion but he goes into over kill and frankly that is not needed.The book continues with Eriol's sojourn in Tol Eressea. The elves of that island tell him several more tales and he tells them a few of his own. Eriol lived in a town on the Great Land and during a minor skirmish he lost everything. His parents were killed and he was pressed into servitude. Eventually he escapes and he makes his way to Tol Eressea. His friend tell him the Tale of Tinuviel. Beren in this version is an elf not a human. Tinuviel is half faery and half elf. They fall in love when he ventures into their relam that is hidden from Melko by the queen's magic. The Queen Gwendeling is a faery. The realm is made up of free elves both Noldoli and Avari elves. Now the king does not quite approve of this match so he challenges Beren to obtain one of the Simarils from Melko's crown. Beren sets off on his quest. He becomes a servant of Melko and his cat assistant Tevildo. After a long period of time Tinuviel longs for Beren and set out to rescue him. Using magic that causes her foes to fall asleep she breaks into Melko's realm to rescue Beren. Huan the king of dogs help out and you know they hate cats.In the end there is a battle between the Wolf King and Beren and much like Tiw in the Norse legends he looses his hand. In a strange way they end up together.In Turumbar and Foaloke , the short version of "Hurin's Children" documents the wars of elves and men against Melko. Hurin gets captured and tortured. Part of the torture involves watching the fait of his children. Turin goes off to King Thingol to be raised in his court. Turin becomes a great warrior, slaying off many orcs and goblin. But he ends up banishing himself from the court after killing another elf for insulting him. He continues his adventures slaying orcs with a good friend from Thingols kingdom. They have many an adventure together but all that ends when Turin is rescued from the captivity with the Orcs. by mistake he slays his friend. He does fall in love with an elven girl but loses her to Glurund (Foaloke) the dragon. He sees his mother's homestead taken over by a corrupt person . He kills the corrupt person get banished from his mothers village and gives himself the name Turumbar. THE Dragon manages to steal away his sisters memory and the two end up connecting. In the end the Dragon is slain and the tainted gold is liberated. Things end off there but the book that was released later called "Hurin's Children" has a very different ending."The Fall of Gondolin" documents a hidden city that is found by a wandering Noldoli who escapes from Melko servitude. Many elves and Noldoli are enslaved by Melko. Ulmo the sea god leads this elf to the city. His coming was fortold and much like a prophet he warns the inhabitant to leave and return to Valinor. His word is not heeded. Our hero marries the elven princess and remains with her for many years. They have a child named Earel. Eventually Melko finds out about this hidden city and after a brutal war and some internal treachery the city falls. everyone ends going to the beach hideout. A special destiny is held in store for Erendel."The Nauglafring" is about the cursed gold from the slaying of Glorofund the Dragon. Somehow Hurin is released from captivity and he is the one who brings forward the gold. The simaril which has been liberated by Beren is combined with this gold to make an elaborate piece of jewelry. But the gold is cursed and that curse involves people killing each other over it. This soon leads to war between and elven kingdom and a dwarf kingdom because the Elves enslave them into making the Jewelry. The elven Kingdom gets destroyed. In retaliation Beren and Tinuviel are called from the faery realm to extract vengeance. There is further loss for Beren and Tinuviel but vengeance is secured. They have a daughter named Elwing.Earendel weds Elwing and then loses her. He takes to the seas to find her. The final part of book delved into Aelfwine. A confusing expalanation to say the least. You can red it and find out. Well worth it for Tolkien fans.

  • Mehmet Ali Yıldırım
    2018-11-28 04:02

    Öğretici, aydınlatıcı fakat dipnot,açıklamalar ve ara notlar derken bunaltıcı. Her öykünün temellendirilmesinin insanda yol açtığı hayal kırıklığının üstesinden gelinmesine yardımcı olan, hoşnutsuzluğa yol açan, beklentilerin karşılanamaması ve mükemmele ulaşılmasının imkansız olduğunun görünmesinin şokunun süregelen etkisiden çıkılması yönünde sufle alınmışçasına dersler çıkarılabilecek bir eser.

  • Jeffrey Gerhart
    2018-11-27 05:47

    This book continues with more stories of Middle-Earth Folklore that occurred before the events of "The Hobbit" or the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy. Christopher Tolkien does an admirable job of explaining how each story came to the final form his Father J.R.R. Tolkien ended up publishing years earlier. The stories are compelling and bring to mind vivid images as you read the pages. "The Fall of Gondolin" is my favorite story in this book, but there are many others which will interest you.

  • Nicholas Whyte
    2018-11-17 06:01

    Second in the series edited by Christopher Tolkien. Here we are looking at two of the core stories of The Silmarillion, and several other narratives which were largely or completely set aside as Tolkien's work developed. I found the very first story, "The Tale of Tinúviel", particularly interesting. For the first time I was struck that it is a tale if love between one character with a short name starting with B and another with a longer name starting with T, whose father opposes the romance just as Tolkien's own guardian opposed his relationship with Edith Bratt. Beren goes off to prove himself in battle and returns maimed, as Tolkien returned with trench fever from the Great War (though after his marriage rather than before). And of course Tolkien was himself always explicit that Tinúviel's dancing in the forest was inspired by Edith dancing for him one day in 1917 when they were out in the woods near his base. His personal identification with this particular story can be seen on his tombstone. I was always a bit disappointed that the version in The Silmarillion doesn't convey much emotional freight, but The Book of Lost Tales is worth getting for this chapter alone.(We also meet the earliest version of Sauron, as Tivaldo the evil king of cats and servant of Melko, a counterpart to Beren's heroic dog.)The other story treated in depth here is "Turambar and the Foalókë", which however has since been published in a pretty definitive format as The Children of Húrin; I found the joins between Beowulf, Kullervo and Tolkien's own imagination much more visible here.The most interesting of the other chapters is "The Tale of Eärendel", another story which is curiously flat in The Silmarillion, a lost tale that underlies a fair bit of Middle Earth mythology but never seems to have found a definite written form; one almost senses Tolkien feeling more comfortable with it inside his head, so that Bilbo and Aragorn could make in-jokes about it in Rivendell, rather than spoiling it by putting too much down on paper.(Also a shout out for "The Fall of Gondolin", with its gripping account of hand-to-hand combat as the city is taken.)Despite the density of the prose I have found both Lost Tales volumes fairly quick reading, Tolkien's prose being as fluent in his twenties as it was later in his life, and Christopher Tolkien's annotations being complete enough to satisfy curiosity without being overwhelming. I'm glad to have got back into this series of books.

  • Francesco
    2018-12-05 00:03

    Vote: 3,00Class: P-A3 (FP) (second, out of twelve!, of the History of Middle-Earth)I'm a Tolkien fan since I was a boy and I've put off reading this for many years, well knowing that this is not something like the Lord of the Rings or even the Silmarillion.This (this book at least) is not a work of fiction... Well, by J.R.R.T. this was meant to be a work of fiction like, let us say, Omero's Iliad or the Aeneid... mixed with Boccaccio's Decameron... But he couldn't finish his work and his dream to give to the Anglo-Saxon world its own mythological literature was never really acknowledged.What we have here is many interesting pieces of this dream, and I liked them a lot.Likewise I liked to understand better the beginning of the building of Middle-Earth, its people, its languages...However I didn't much care for the way this pieces were pieced together by his son Christopher, even if I know that I can't begin to understand how difficult it could be to publish J.R.R.T.'s notes and tales in any intelligibile way...I'll go on with the next volumes.

  • Mark Woodland
    2018-12-10 06:07

    As others have noted, this is the second book of collected material by Christopher Tolkien after the death of his father, released following The Silmarillion and The Book of Lost Tales, Part I. There are related stories to some of those in the Silmarillion, as well as tales of legends we've only heard mention of before, as well as material that was brand-new to me. Most of it concerns ages before the familiar Third Age of the trilogy. There's more of a chance to see how Tolkien developed his world of legend, and a closer look at how his invention to the languages (which is where he started) established what the various races and peoples are like. It's a bit "thick" to get through, though; not in terms of the size of the book, but you do have to really want to read and know these stories to get through the book. Christopher's editing of the material improves with each of the volumes that follow these, which are more of a whole tale on their own. Still, I very much enjoyed reading this book, especially since, at the time, I didn't know if there would ever be any more of Tolkien's extant material published. Luckily, there turned out to be much more.

  • Ted Wolf
    2018-12-08 05:55

    STOP: Before you buy this book or begin reading it answer this question. Have you read the Silmarillion and did you like it?If the answer is 'No, I haven't read it', then read the Silmarillion before reading this book.If the answer is 'Yes, I've read the Silmarillion, but I didn't like it', then you will most likely not like this book either as these are earlier versions of what became the Silmarillion.If the answer is 'Yes, I've read the Silmarillion and enjoyed it', then you might like this book and seeing the stories in their early forms.If you are or want to be a hardcore Tolkien fan then this book is a must.If you enjoyed the Silmarillion, but don't need to be an expert on all things Tolkien I recommend selectively reading 'The Tale of Tinuviel' (Of Baren and Luthien), 'Turambar and the Foaloke' (Of Turin Turambar), 'The Fall of Gondolin' (Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin) & 'The Nauglafring' (Of the Ruin of Doriath). These four stories represent the best of this book and the commentary can be skipped. I think you'll find some of the differences interesting, but these stories are of course not as good as the final versions in the Silmarillion.

  • Sarazeen Saif
    2018-12-05 00:08

    This second part of THE BOOK OF LOST TALES includes the tale of Beneren and Luthien, Turin and the Dragon, Necklace of the Dwarves, and the Fall of Gondolin. Each tale is followed by a commentary in the form of a short essay, together with the texts of associated poems, as well as information on names and vocabulary in the earliest Elvish languages. Review "One marvels anew at the depth, breadth, and persistence of J.R.R. Tolkien's labor. No one sympathetic to his aims, the invention of a secondary universe, will want to miss this chance to be present at the creation." Publishers Weekly From the Inside Flap This second part of THE BOOK OF LOST TALES includes the tale of Beneren and Luthien, Turin and the Dragon, Necklace of the Dwarves, and the Fall of Gondolin. Each tale is followed by a commentary in the form of a short essay, together with the texts of associated poems, as well as information on names and vocabulary in the earliest Elvish languages.

  • Gloriafindel
    2018-11-21 05:51

    Amo Tolkien e il mondi di Arda è quello dove ho praticamente vissuto la mia infanzia, quindi mi piacerebbe dirvi che questo libro sia fantastico ma purtroppo direi una bugia. Le storie sono avvincenti, "La Caduta di Gondolin" prima tra tutte, ma spesso la lettura sembra vanificata dalle note che indicano perennemente dei cambiamenti apportati nel Silmarillion a quella stessa vicenda. Nonostante abbia letto una traduzione, a tratti avevo la netta sensazione che ci fossero dei buchi da colmare e dei punti da rivedere, non saprei se per una sorta di suggestione mia o perché sia effettivamente così. Inoltre le note e i commenti erano sinceramente noiosi, e ammetto di averne saltati alcuni. Sono felice di aver letto questo capitolo dei Racconti Perduti ma non penso che ne leggerò altri. Alla fine mi ha lasciato l'impressione che si trattasse di un insieme di racconti perduti che forse, essendo lo stadio embrionale di altri racconti, sarebbero dovuti rimanere persi.

  • Stephen Poltz
    2018-11-11 23:14

    Part II is a continuation of the texts Tolkien included in his Lost Tales writings from the 1910s. The division between the two parts is a publishing choice. However, it is conveniently divided between what could be called genesis stories, those which focus more on creation and the gods, and later stories, those that deal with elves, humans, and the other beings. Most of the stories here we’ve already encountered once or twice before. But in all cases, they are the earliest documentation of these stories. While they are the banner stories of Tolkien’s First Age imaginarium, reading them again but this time in archaic style makes for a tough go. And to give them a fair shake, you really need to forget most of what you remember from The Silmarillion and The Unfinished Tales, something I was not completely able to do.Come visit my blog for the full review:http://itstartedwiththehugos.blogspot...

  • Kyo
    2018-11-27 07:10

    Ancora più frammentato del primo volume "Racconti ritrovati", qua i rimandi continui tra note e versioni alternative oltrepassano la soglia di sopportazione. Sebbene le prime quattro sezioni siano a loro modo interessanti per chi volesse approfondire le origini del Silmarillion (ma valgono le stesse osservazioni di ingenuità e scarsa coerenza fatte per il primo volume), le ultime due sezioni ("Il racconto di Eärendel" e "La storia di Eriol e Ælfwine e la conclusione dei racconti") sono pressoché illegibili. Per queste parti infatti sono state ritrovate solo annotazioni sparse, spesso in contrasto tra loro e abbandonate sul nascere, e idee di massima su quella che avrebbe potuto essere la narrazione, con un disumano lavoro di analisi da parte del figlio per comporre una sorta di riassunto di quello che avrebbero potuto essere. In definitiva, una rilettura del Silmarillion è decisamente tempo speso meglio che affrontare la lettura di questi due volumi.