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Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-Earth (Unfinished Tales)

3.9 of 5 stars 3.90  ·  rating details  ·  18,804 ratings  ·  361 reviews
An extraordinary discovery is waiting for you on these pages. Mythic lore and forgotten legends unearthed by Christopher Tolkien from his father's archives unveil never-before-told stories of the three ages of ancient Middle-earth.
Paperback, 472 pages
Published 1980 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Terry
May 31, 2013 Terry rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tolkien fans, not Richard
This is the first work that showed us how Tolkien's obsessive perfectionism was a double-edged sword. On the one hand it gave us the wonderfully deep world and implied distances of The Lord of the Rings; and on the other hand it left us with a jumble of tales in various states of revision and development that had to be compiled by Tolkien's son Christopher into some form as The Silmarillion...a jumble of tales that, if they had been finished, would have given us a truly staggering body of work. ...more
Psychophant
This is simply a moneymaking scheme. After the success of the Silmarillion, the Tolkien state has published all notes that were in a more or less readable state. This is the only one I bought (besides Chidren of Hurin, which probably has much in common with the bigger part of this book).

I do not think Professor Tolkien would have liked to have these drafts and notes published. Many of them are even obsolete, as he built up and discarded elements in his mythic construct.

There are some great story
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Joseph
The name says it all -- these are stories primarily of the First and Second Age of Middle-earth that had never quite reached completion, even in draft form; some predate the writing of Lord of the Rings by decades but most come after, and the book includes some of Tolkien's last writings about Middle-earth. The stories are presented by his son Christopher who, presumably, selected the pieces that were nearest to completion and likeliest to be of interest to Middle-earth aficionados. The pieces a ...more
Nikki
This collection of Unfinished Tales is difficult to get to grips with, because Christopher Tolkien had the sense not to mess with them too much. He didn't correct inconsistencies or do too much to the material, and that's for the best: J.R.R.'s intent and the breadth of his world are best experienced this way, I think.

I don't think this is one for the casual reader, but for someone interested in Tolkien and his creation of a secondary world, and in the details of Middle-earth, it's a good one. E
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Nihan
Orta Dünya hakkında ne kadar kitap yazılırsa yazılsın, hep anlatılacak bir başka öykü daha vardır sanırım. Gizli kalmış öyküler, bize ulaşamayanlar... Bitmemiş Öyküler'e başlarken heyecanlıydım açıkçası neler okuyacağıma dair ve hayal kırıklığına da uğramadım.
İlk Çağ, İkinci Çağ ve Üçüncü Çağ olmak üzere 3 kısımdan oluşuyor kitap ve her şeyin en başından başlıyor anlatılmaya. Savaş yüzünden ailesini terk etmek zorunda kalan Tuor'un öyküsüyle başlıyor. Kısa bir öyküydü, biraz sıkıcıydı :)
Sonra
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Kevis Hendrickson
J.R.R. Tolkien's Unfinished Tales is a terrific book for diehard Tolkien fans, in particular, fans of The Lord of the Rings who have not yet read The Silmarillion. Ever wondered what were the exact events that caused Isildur to lose the One Ring? Or the origins of Wizards? Or what Middle-Earth was like during its First Age? Unfinished Tales helps to shed light on the complex creation of Middle-Earth and the many tales and legends that relate the events in its long and largely tumultuous history. ...more
Chris Hall
This is a hard book to rate, because it's sort of like rating a compilation album of Led Zeppelin studio out-takes. If you love Led Zeppelin, you would undoubtedly want to listen to pretty much anything they did. On the other hand, objectively speaking, it's probably not their best work, and if you trust them as artists, you know why they left that material on the cutting room floor. And, indeed, this book is a collection of scrapings, random essays and bits of narrative illuminating obscure cor ...more
Kim
Jan 13, 2014 Kim rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tolkien fans
Shelves: fantasy, favorites
A fascinating look at many of the stories that did not make it into Professor Tolkien's primary works. This is probably one of my favorite books of this well-known mythology.

(view spoiler)
...more
Curtis
I've read quite a few parts of this previously, either due to individual curiosity about specific topics (such as the Quest of Erebor, Istari, Palantiri) or as part of other works (Narn i Hin Hurin –most of which is incorporated in The Children of Hurin), but I had not until now sat down and read all the various tales in order. Already a big fan of Tolkien, as a whole I quite enjoyed the collection, especially since Christopher Tolkien's notes and analysis are kept at a minimum compared when com ...more
Chelseabelle
This book is for the nerdiest of Tolkien nerds. I enjoyed it. There were some chapters that I skipped over because I had no interest in them.. I don't really care about Eorl and I don't really care about the fields of Celebrant, but almost everything else was fantastic. The most dissappointing chapter that I read was "Galadriel and Celeborn," and that's only because it was one of the least finished by Tolkien.

Some poeple say this book was put out there for money, but I disagree. There are a LOT
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DMae
I bought this book at a used book store in Rome. I read it in the evenings right before bed and on long train trips. When I was leaving Rome for the last time, I had no room in my suitcase, so I sacrificed that book and left it at the hotel. The cover I selected is the one I left behind. My current copy, also used, is a different edition. Most books I found in that hotel were old guide books. I always wondered if someone found it curious that there was a Tolkien book on the shelf!

This book is a
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beggs
Until the publication of The Children of Hurin a few years ago, Unfinished Tales was the third piece of the Middle-earth trilogy. Paired with The Lord of The Rings and The Silmarillion it was a bit of a third wheel; comprised of various stories in different states of completeness with some editorial comments by Christopher Tolkien needed to bridge the gaps and contradictions left by the myriad versions Tolkien authored of most of these stories.

Unfinished Tales actually includes my favorite of al
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Rodrigo
Soy un super fan de "El señor de los anillos" y de Tolkien. Sin duda, los "Cuentos Inconclusos" enriquecen mucho la saga y te dejan con una sensación alucinante, preguntándote si lo inventó todo Tolkien o de verdad existió la Tierra Media. Eso sí, estos cuentos son para especialistas, no sólo fans. Están llenos de referencias a los libros, fechas, nombres en diversas lenguas, sean élficas o "Dúnedáin", además de referencias geográficas e históricas, fechas... Si no tienes en la cabeza toda la hi ...more
Christopher Bashforth
Another surprise present from my lovely wife. Before I started reading I thought it would be about slogging through the First Age chapters before getting to the good stuff on the Third Age – with Tolkien I read everything, even the appendixes. However, I was surprised – the First Age chapters were actually very enjoyable and the Third Age parts were not as good. Having said that though, the best story in the book is the background to the Hobbit. I still think it was amazing that the whole future ...more
Anood
A fantastic book of tales to fill the gaps in the other known stories found in The Hobbit, LOTR, and The Silmirillion. I really enjoyed the Aldarion and Erendis story that shows that not all Middle-Earth marriages were successful but I was disappointed with the essays concerning Galadriel and Celeborn because they were often incomplete and had lots of different versions.
Nevertheless, it's a nice read overall especially for those who hunger for more Middle-Earth information and details.
X
Jan 02, 2010 X rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tolkienites
This book has some amazing gems of writing, but alas!, as the title suggests, they are unfinished - as in an abrupt stop in the middle of the story rather than just unpolished. It's such a shame that Tolkien didn't finish more of his works. Christopher Tolkien does an admirable job of piecing endings together, so at least I won't forever be wondering how most of the stories end. I was a bit disappointed that there wasn't more on the Third Age and LOTR, but perhaps that is in other books.
Nathan Dehoff
This 1988 edition of a book originally published in 1980 collects various stories about Middle-Earth that Tolkien never completed to his satisfaction, with notes from his son Christopher. Someday I want to be such a popular writer that every scrap of paper on which I started to write fiction will be professionally published. Not that I think there's any chance of that happening, but it really strikes me as the ultimate mark of creative success. Anyway, some of these are fairly complete narrative ...more
Izumen
Недовършени предания: http://izumen.blogspot.com/2014/11/bl...

Огромна радост е за всички фенове на Толкин в България, фактът, че от издателство "Бард" решиха да преиздадат книгата "Недовършени предания". Не са един или двама хората, които са ме питали от къде да си я намерят. Още повече, че покрай завършващата този декември трилогия по "Хобит" на Питър Джаксън, интересът към Средната земя със сигурност ще се възобнови.

"Недовършени предания" е сборник, издаден след смъртта на Толкин, от неговия с
...more
Kevin Underhill
Five stars for Tolkien fans, at least, but you probably need to be familiar with The Silmarillion (and even like it) as well as LOTR. If you are, then it's awesome to read some of the (unfinished) backstory that Tolkien had worked on but never published. If you're not, it might be too hard to follow. I wasn't interested in it much until recently, but I really liked it.
Aha
It is a way better than most finished tales of other authors for sure!
But in most cases, the way Christofer representing it, I cannot say that something is unfinished there! A very good read! I did find out many interesting information concerning Arda and state of thing as a whole.

I recommend it to read after Silmarillion!
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Stephen Poltz
Most Tolkien fans probably know that he had trouble finishing his work. Even with the books he finished, he revised later editions. This was because he was constantly developing his universe. Rather than simply writing a new story in the universe and moving on, like many contemporary writers of multi-story universes, he jumped around the timeline, making additions and changes, evolving the characters and situations as his own understanding evolved. “Unfinished Tales” presents stories which he ne ...more
Angela
For this, I interrupted my run through the unread Tanya Huff on my shelf--'cause all apologies to Ms. Huff and all, but Tolkien trumps her, and I'd gotten into quite the mood to check me out some of the Tolkien material I'd never read once I heard that The Children of Húrin was coming out. So I went and picked up a copy of Unfinished Tales to see what it had to offer.

If you're looking for a complete and cohesive narrative, this isn't it. Unfinished Tales is exactly what the title advertises--a c
...more
Nicholas Whyte
http://nhw.livejournal.com/787532.html[return][return]I'd been putting off reading for years, fearing that it would be as big a disappointment as The Silmarillion. But in fact, taken on its own merits, there are some excellent bits here. The first half of the book, which is basically three chunks of narrative which didn't quite make it into The Silmarillion, is especially good, although the very first part, a lovely description of Tuor's journey to Gondolin, is a bit short on narrative action.[r ...more
Dave Maddock
This collection is of highly various quality. The best item, the story of Túrin, has since been made obsolete by The Children of Húrin. Go read that instead, it's great. The story of Aldarion and Erendis stands out as the next best--for its relative completeness, setting in Númenor, and artistry. What remains (the bulk of the book) is not particularly literary, although sometimes interesting from a "portrait of the artist as an old man" point of view.
Steve Cran
This is one volume that I am glad to have read. It has stories going all the way the first age all the way through to the third age where in the Lord of the Rings occurs. During the first age the reader is treated to an account of how Tuor found the city of Gondolin after having escaped Morgoth;s slave camp. Led by Ulmo , the sea God and elves Tuor is charged with delivering a message. But does Thingol the King of Gondolin heed that message. The second story is the tragic tale of Turin son of Hu ...more
Rossrn Nunamaker
Feb 17, 2014 Rossrn Nunamaker rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who wanted more after finishing Lord of the Rings
Shelves: fantasy, fiction
I had wanted to read History of Middle Earth (HoME), and re-reading the published version of each became a pre-requisite to refresh my memory. So I read The Silmarillion and then decided before HoME, I'd read The Unfinished Tales. I last read this book roughly 20 years ago so re-reading it was essentially a new experience.

While HoME is definitely for the dedicated and hardcore fan of Tolkien, Unfinished Tales is a bit different. I felt like Christopher Tolkien's commentary was more along the lin
...more
Sarah Echo
For fans of Tolkien and his mythology, this is an indispensable work. Unfinished Tales provides incredible details about many aspects of The Lord of the Rings, such as the hunt for the One Ring and how the Ringwraiths got to the Shire. There is also a history of Galadriel and Celeborn, a full account of Tuor’s journey to Gondolin, the history of the Wizards, and the history of the long friendship between Gondor and Rohan, as told in “Cirion and Eorl”. All readers of Tolkien must read this collec ...more
Sarah
Přemýšlím, co touto knihou chtěl C. Tolkien vlastně říci. Je to kombinace Tolkienových neuspořádaných poznámek slepených do povídek. Toto rozhodně není něco, co by bylo vydatelného. Buď si měl Christopher nechat narůst orgány a stát se pokračovatelem díla svého otce nebo měl z jeho poznámek udělat pseudo-encyklopedii. Ne knížku, které schází hlava a pata.

A paní překladatelka by si mohla odpustit komolení jmen....
Nenda
So you have finished The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings? Have munching through Silmarillion and feel not satisfied yet? Then welcome to Unfinished Tales where Christopher Tolkien rambling about numerous possible background of Celeborn (the husband of Galadriel), the story behind the Rohan, the death of Isildur, etc. Please be warned, the narration is not easy and knowledge of middle earth is required.
Silvana
Wow it took me more than six months to finish this book! It was worth it, some tales are truly fascinating. Some are just, well, too academic. Understandable, as this book contains lots of speculations and different versions of stories we thought we know based on Tolkien's myriad of notes. So if you've read The Silmarillion and still can't get enough of Middle-earth, then read this one.
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2015 Reading Chal...: Unfinished Tales by J.R.R. Tolkien 1 8 Apr 19, 2015 07:24AM  
Goodreads Librari...: French translation wrongly combined 2 30 Feb 13, 2015 02:36AM  
Question re: The Children of Húrin 2 14 Jan 24, 2015 05:33AM  
Mythgard Academy: Unfinished Tales: General Discussion 1 10 Apr 21, 2014 01:19PM  
Did Radagast wholly fail in his quest? 8 91 Aug 13, 2013 11:07AM  
Tolkien's T.C.B.S: Unfinished Tales 1 10 May 08, 2013 07:15AM  
  • The History of the Hobbit, Part Two: Return to Bag-End
  • The Atlas of Middle-Earth
  • A Tolkien Bestiary
  • J.R.R. Tolkien: Author of the Century
  • The Languages of Tolkien's Middle-Earth
  • Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Pearl, and Sir Orfeo
  • A Gateway to Sindarin: A Grammar of an Elvish Language from JRR Tolkien's Lord of the Rings
  • Splintered Light: Logos and Language in Tolkien's World
  • The Journeys of Frodo
  • The Art of The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
  • The Complete Guide to Middle-Earth
  • Tolkien and the Great War: The Threshold of Middle-earth
  • The Ring of Words: Tolkien and the Oxford English Dictionary
  • Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit
  • J.R.R. Tolkien: Architect of Middle Earth
  • There and Back Again: The Map of the Hobbit
  • Master of Middle-Earth: The Fiction of J.R.R. Tolkien
  • Tolkien: A Look Behind the Lord of the Rings
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John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, CBE, was an English writer, poet, WWI veteran (a First Lieutenant in the Lancashire Fusiliers, British Army), philologist, and university professor, best known as the author of the high fantasy classic works The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings .

Tolkien was Rawlinson and Bosworth Professor of Anglo-Saxon at Oxford from 1925 to 1945, and Merton Professor of English lan
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More about J.R.R. Tolkien...

Other Books in the Series

Unfinished Tales (2 books)
  • Contes & Légendes Inachevés, Volume 3 : Le Troisième Âge (Middle-Earth Universe series)
The Hobbit (Middle-Earth Universe) The Fellowship of the Ring (The Lord of the Rings, #1) The Return of the King (The Lord of the Rings, #3) The Two Towers (The Lord of the Rings, #2) The Lord of the Rings (The Lord of the Rings, #1-3)

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