The Last Ringbearer
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The Last Ringbearer

3.48 of 5 stars 3.48  ·  rating details  ·  481 ratings  ·  107 reviews
J. R. R. Tolkien ve svém Pánu prstenů představil čtenářům příběh boje dobra a zla. Boje, ve kterém se krásní a ušlechtilí elfové a hrdinští lidé jako spojenci staví proti skřetům, pokřiveným a zkaženým lidem i stvůrám temnot v čele se samotným Sauronem. Po těžkých a úporných bojích za cenu nesmírných obětí je zlo poraženo a konečně může nastat čas míru. Pán prstenů je přek...more
ebook, 269 pages
Published 2010 (first published 1990)
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Mar 06, 2011 Terence rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommended to Terence by: Referred by Doug
Saying that The Last Ringbearer is The Lord of the Rings told from Mordor’s point of view is not entirely accurate. True, the principal characters are an army medic and scout of Mordor and an erstwhile Ranger of Ithilien but all the action takes place after the War of the Ring. Middle Earth is recast as Europe during the Cold War, with Gondor and Mordor assuming the roles of the superpowers. The “magic” of Tolkien’s vision becomes window dressing, and the novel reads more like John Le Carré fanf...more
UPDATE: A lot of the negative reviews of this book seem to be based on people not being able to deal with the author’s (very clever) undercutting of long-held assumptions about who were the good guys in The Lord of the Rings. I found the text lively in terms of plot, inventive in terms of literature, and incisive in terms of geopolitics. A second reading was even better than the first go-round.

ORIGINAL REVIEW: This is a cut way above your typical fan fiction, satire, and fantasy lit in general....more
Aedan Lake
Note... reading fan translation issued as a free PDF.

Great fun - a revisionist Lord of the Rings set after the defeat of Mordor, in which two Mordorians (the Orc Ranger Tzerlag and Umbarian Field Medic Haladdin) embark on a desperate plan to save their homeland (and the world) from Elvish domination, against a backdrop of power plays by Aragorn, Faramir, Galadriel and other familiar characters.

Enjoyable for a shades-of-grey morality and the endless schemin...more
It's probably a good idea to read the author's essay on before tackling this book. He's a Russian geologist or palaeontologist or something and wrote it because he was puzzling over some geological oddities of Middle Earth (i.e., single continent but no mid-continent mountain range, and also what's on the rest of the map south and east of Morder that you never see?).

The first part, where LoTR is recapped from the Mordorians' perspective, was interesting and rather creative (who knew i...more
I want to thank Terence for putting his soul in my soul's stead, so to speak, by finding and reading this book for me, so I don't have to. His analysis is so accurate and detailed (though I did bite the bullet and read it myself last night) that I won't even try to go into any depth about it, other than to say I completely agree that this isn't worth reading, and that the story isn't really worthy of the grandeur of the setting, and could easily have been set in any other fictional world like Du...more
Take the Lord of the Rings, add the premise that "History is written by the victors," and consider further that:

* The elves are generally considered dangerous and untrustworthy
* The riders of Rohan are basically illiterate peasants, albeit very dangerous ones
* There is indication that Mordor has something to do with technological advances

This tale begins with a Mordorian military scouting unit that was out of contact at the time of the destruction of Sauron's forces. In keeping with "History wri...more
International Cat Lady
Absolutely brilliant! We've all heard that history is written by the victor. Well, imagine that The Lord of the Rings is a historical text written by the victors in the War of the Ring, and imagine that the absolute Good vs. Evil depicted in TLOTR is nothing but propaganda written by said victors to excuse/justify their acts. Russian scientist and author Kirill Eskov has written a brilliant reimagining of the War of the Ring (and the time following the defeat of Morder) from the point of view of...more
I thought this was a ripping good tale . It retells the LoTR from the perspective of Mordor and with a more realist spin on the world. Real politick is injected into Middle Earth and informs the actions of the nation states. Events aren't driven by some abstract sense of good and evil, but by realistic people making rational decisions in their own self interest. It gives the story a much more compelling thrust in my opinion. In this retelling orcs aren't doing evil for evil's sake (AKA: The Skel...more
(I am humbled by the amount of love and devotion it takes to 1) Write a novel-length transformational/derivative work 2) Translate it into another language.)

This is one of the books I read for the Good Books panel at FOGcon. I would not have if it hadn't been an "assignment", and I'm glad I did. It is interesting and varied. There is a story about strategic war decisions, and a story about spycraft, and a story about weapons design, and a palace intrigue story, and an overarching story of compet...more
Tim Byron
This book is basically a sequel to Lord of the Rings told from the point of view of the other side, which basically paints Mordor as a place of science and learning which became a threat to the ignorant medieval elves who ran the place with magic (Yeskov paints Arwen as the power behind Aragorn's throne, for example). It was written by a Russian archaeologist and it really is a fascinating idea, really cleverly thought out. The idea of it - that Lord of the Rings is myth, and that there was a le...more
Advertencia: ningún fanático ortodoxo de Tolkien debe acercarse a este libro.
Ahora sí, pasemos a mi opinión personal.
"Si la historia la escriben los que ganan, eso quiere decir que hay otra historia"
Este libro aporta una mirada diferente a la Tierra Media. Por suerte (y en algunos momentos por desgracia) el autor no intenta emular el estilo de Tolkien. La novela está escrita con un lenguaje actual, y abundan los insultos y alguna que otra alusión sexual. La idea es interesante, los personajes ta...more
The Last Ringbearer is based on the premise that The Lord of the Rings was a history written by the victors, to make them look noble and justified in their actions. It is written as a revisionist history of the events following the War of the Ring.

It's a very different picture. Mordor had been a peaceful civilization, developing technology and on the verge of an industrial revolution. Barad-Dur was a thriving city of poets, writers, and intellectuals. Then the traditionalist forces of the west,...more
Ross Lockhart
The idea behind Kirill Yeskov's The Last Ringbearer is killer: Retell The Lord of the Rings from a Mordorian perspective. And at times, this tale comes close to living up to the promise of this premise. Mordor is a fallen superpower, its industrial riches and technological innovation stripped and stolen by the Elven victors in the War of the Rings, and the hapless Orc medic Haladin seems set to be a compelling protagonist as he begins his Nazgûl-given quest, the object of which is a Mission: Imp...more
Ray Blaak
Excellent, required reading for LoTR fans, a wonderful "Real Politik" antidote to the unquestioning heroic stances of LoTR characters.

For example, hobbits are hardly mentioned, Elves are assholes, Wizards are devious and untrustworthy, Orcs are effective soldiers, Mordor is the secular jewel of the world, the main character is a regular human using science to get things done.

In other words, imagine a more balanced point of for interpreting the state of affairs in Middle Earth.

Some commenters co...more
My first thought was “Not another writer so devoid of ideas that he has to ‘borrow’ The Lord of the Rings mythology.” In the first 5 pages, the dread set in. Yet, I continued, and I’m so glad I did.

This novel has a great sense of detail. It mixes realism and magical elements with ease. It’s political. It’s funny. At times it reads like a documentary. The mixture of these elements is blended perfectly.

This novel turns Tolkien’s original perspective upside down. Throughout the novel, I kept rememb...more
I made the mistake of trying to read The Last Ringbearer. I will say that the book is priced appropriately, it's free. And that's the extent of the good. When I read the puff piece in Salon I should have known that the book would be as epically awful as the review was ecstatic, but I was so taken by the idea that I had to read it anyway.

The basic idea is a re-telling of the War of the Ring from the other side. OK, excellent start. If you read Tolkien in anything but a facile way there is room fo...more
This is a rather sweet fan-fiction re-imagining of The Lord of the Rings. Eskov badly needs an editor, for structure and content and language. (Some of the US slang made me cringe. Faramir calls Eowyn 'Honey'. Or is it 'Baby'?) But it's very amusing to see Middle Earth in terms of geopolitics. And would you believe the Elves are the sinister bad guys, bent on global domination? And the Nazgul are philosopher-priests; tee-hee. Lovely idea, but I'm probably too old to buy it. I've gotten almost 40...more
A must-read for Lord of the Rings junkies. What if LOTR was merely the whitewashed story of the War of the Ring as told by the victors? This is the story of that war from the Southern and Eastern perspective...along with a new post-war quest. At points it gets a bit too obsessed with technical detail, but overall it's an engrossing new take on Middle Earth.

Read Salon's review of the book:

Download the free official pdf:
I first found interest for The Last Ring-Bearer after being told that it was an alternative take on the beloved J.R.R.Tolkien classic told from the other side. To my dismay, what I was met with was something closely, if not resembling an ideal fan fiction written devoid of Tolkien lore and what made The Lord of the Rings well-loved. Kirill Y. instead reimagines a Middle-Earth that takes setting in a Cold War-like era.

While the geopolitics of Middle-Earth was interesting to an extent, the charact...more
This book is a little different, in that you can't get it on amazon or a book store. The author posted it in PDF format for free on the web. Some time after that, it was translated into English and made available as an english PDF for free as well. That's a lot of work for free. Anyway, the book itself follows the story of Lord of the Rings as if it were a history book. This is a look at that history from a different angle, Middle Earth from the view of Mordor.

It's filled with secret wars, doubl...more
I don't think I'm going to be able to finish this one. I like the concept and I enjoyed parts of the very beginning, but once Eskov moved past setting up this vision of Middle Earth and the events of LOTR from a different perspective and into plotting and character development he completely lost me. I just don't care about these people and their intrigues. Maybe others will.
Smart, well-written and surprising at points.

Where the original LOTR take a highly romantic view of Middle Earth, this book views history through a much more cynical and rational lense.

I started reading it mostly as a novelty, but was impressed by how well-written it was and how believable the characters are. Very much recommended!
Bryan Frink
I have so little (perhaps nothing?) to add to what has already been said in other reviews.

The theme that most deeply resonated with me was:

The western kingdoms of Middle Earth viewed as a theocracy threatened by scientific progress. In both the Muslim and Christian worlds, we face similar contention today.
This seems to be an interesting concept, but I couldn't get into it. Might give it another shot in the future, it would be interesting to read about the world and happenings of LotR in another perspective.
Honza Andrš
Just better than original saga.
En primer lugar tengo que decir que en la versión en español cambian todos los nombres, he leído por ahí que por problemas con el copyright, por lo que se hace un poco mas complicado seguir la trama cuando tienes en mente los nombres de toda la vida.

La premisa es que "El señor de los Anillos" es un libro contado exclusivamente por los vencedores, y esta es la historia contada por los perdedores, en la que por supuesto son ellos los buenos. En un primer momento esperaba algo mas "realista" y, aun...more
Dave Jones
First of all, this was my first book read entirely from my phone. There wasn't much choice really. I downloaded this book from either Lifehacker or HowtoGeek in the pdf format. Given my tendency to read just before bedtime, there were not many options.

I downloaded the novel because I was intrigued by the premise: describing a contemporary "counter-story" to The Lord of the Rings told from the perspective of the "losers." Yeskov creates an imaginative story full of various plots and sub-plots. M...more
Richard Houchin
Great idea and concept. Using the saying "history is written by the victors" as a starting point for fan-fic is a solid base. This is a fun read if you keep in mind what you're reading. I like this book because its a testament to the times in which I live. A Russian (I don't speak Russian) used his spare time away from his day job to write a story in his native language. An American who speaks Russian used his lunch hours to translate this story into English. He then posted it on a blog as a .pd...more
Andrew G. Gibson
Even if your familiarity with Tolkein's Middle Earth is restricted to watching Peter Jackson's films (which I regard as more worthwhile than the books, at any rate) you will definitely get something from this.

Finally, something to do with the Lord of the Rings universe with which I can engage. Before I was resigned to opining, in a manner which was unwittingly hipster and irritating, "I actually prefer The Silmarillion". It's a re-imagining of the LOTR universe from a stance of rigour which ext...more
J.V. Stanley
On an alternate level of inspiration, The Last Ringbearer by Kirill Yeskov (Random House, 1999) reads at times like a cross between Clancy and Tolkien, and is the attempt of a Russian scientist to explain a few more of the inner workings of the Lord of the Rings universe. It begins with a standard setting. The main character is a worn and wounded engineer, wandering the desert with the only other survivor to live through the destruction of his unit, braving enemy held territory to make it to saf...more
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Eskov graduated from the MSU Department of Entomology from Moscow State University in 1979. In 1986 he defended a dissertation for the Candidate of Biological Sciences at the A.N.Severtsov Institute of Animal Evolutionary Morphology and Ecology of the USSR Academy of Sciences, the theme being "Spiders of Northern Siberia (horology analysis)".[1] His main scientific interests as a biologist are spi...more
More about Kirill Yeskov...
Ewangelia według Afraniusza История Земли и жизни на ней Ostatni powiernik pierścienia, #1 Ostatni powiernik pierścienia, #2 Удивительная палеонтология

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