Stunning three-volume slipcased set containing the most comprehensive in-depth companion to Tolkien’s life and works ever published, including synopses of all his writings, and a Tolkien gazetteer, who’s who and chronology.
The three volumes contained in this slipcase, written by two of the foremost experts on J.R.R. Tolkien, comprise the definitive handbook to one of the most popular authors of the 20th century. Tolkien's progress is traced from his birth in South Africa in 1892, to the battlefields of France and the lecture-halls of Leeds and Oxford, to his success as the author of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, until his death in 1973. His many academic and literary achievements, his public reception, and his enduring fame are examined in detail.
The first volume in this set is a Chronology of Tolkien's life and works, the most extensive biographical resource about him ever published. Thousands of details have been drawn from letters, contemporary documents in libraries and archives, and a wide variety of other published and unpublished sources. Assembled together, they form a portrait of Tolkien in all his aspects: the distinguished scholar of Old and Middle English, the capable teacher and administrator, the devoted husband and father, the brilliant creator of Middle-earth.
The second and third volumes, the Reader's Guide, is an indispensable introduction to Tolkien's life, writings, and art. It includes histories and discussions of his works; analyses of the components of his vast 'Silmarillion' mythology; brief biographies of persons important in his life; accounts of places he knew; essays on topics such as Tolkien's interests and attitudes towards contemporary issues, ideas found in his works, adaptations, and invented languages; and checklists of his published works, his poetry, his pictorial art, and translations of his writing.
Wayne G. Hammond was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and raised in the suburb of Brooklyn. In 1975 he received his Bachelor of Arts degree with Honors from Baldwin-Wallace College, Berea, Ohio, where he majored in English. In 1976 he received his Master of Arts in Library Science degree from the School of Library Science of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and from that year has been Assistant Librarian in the Chapin Library (rare books and manuscripts) at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. He married Christina Scull in December 1994. His publications include The Graphic Art of C.B. Falls (1982), J.R.R. Tolkien: A Descriptive Bibliography (1993), and Arthur Ransome: A Bibliography (2000). He is also the co-author or co-editor with his wife of numerous works by and about J.R.R. Tolkien, and has designed a wide variety of books, exhibition catalogues, posters, and other printed materials. He has won a Clyde S. Kilby Research Grant from the Marion E. Wade Center, Wheaton College, and is a five-time winner of scholarship awards from the Mythopoeic Society.
No, I haven't read it all already, but I've browsed a lot. It's terrific, as you'd expect, and I already have two other enormous books in my queue that I've been working on in desultory fashion for years. It's an essential reference book for the extremely serious, and I'll never be done with it. Perhaps I should check the 'hide entire review because of spoilers' box? Andrew Higgins can call me a cheater if he wants to.
I think this is a fantastic collection if you want to know more about J.R.R. Tolkien and his works. It is definitely something that you can pick up again and check once you want to know about certain aspects.