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The Silmarillion

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  246,218 ratings  ·  9,771 reviews
Alternate cover can be found here:

The story of the creation of the world and of the First Age, this is the ancient drama to which the characters in The Lord of the Rings look back and in whose events some of them, such as Elrond and Galadriel, took part.

The three Silmarils were jewels created by Fëanor, most gifted of the Elves. Wi
Paperback, 443 pages
Published December 2019 by HarperCollins (first published September 15th 1977)
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Preda I think you should read them like Hobbit -> LOTR -> Silm -> Children of Hurin -> UT and HOME. It isn't the "chronological order" but it eases you into…moreI think you should read them like Hobbit -> LOTR -> Silm -> Children of Hurin -> UT and HOME. It isn't the "chronological order" but it eases you into the world in the best way. Reading Silmarillion or Chilren first and then Hobbit sort of feels weird since those are some very grim books while Hobbit is more relaxed(less)
Alysande I second reading the Hobbit before LOTR and then Silmarillion. The order of the rest doesn't matter. The 12 volumes of Histories of Middle Earth are o…moreI second reading the Hobbit before LOTR and then Silmarillion. The order of the rest doesn't matter. The 12 volumes of Histories of Middle Earth are only for diehard fans or scholars. They are notes and fragments, not fiction from cover to cover. Only if you want to know about details like what happens to the souls of dead elves and elven laws on marriage are these for you.(less)
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Mar 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: serious fans of Middle Earth
I had tried to read J.R.R. Tolkien' The Silamarillion multiple times in the past (and always unsuccessfully) and had basically given up, but I finally did manage to realise that I was attempting to read it the wrong way; I was trying to read The Silmarillion like I have read and with pleasure reread LOTR, as a story, an epic story, of course, but still first and foremost as a story. Now while The Silmarillion is of course also partially a story, it is (at least for me) first and foremost a relig ...more
Mario the lone bookwolf
That´s how worldbuilding has to be done the ultimate overachiever way. The only true one, the writing a life long on it mode, the one narrative style to rule them all.

Don´t expect anything similar to Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit, this is Tolkiens´s self made manual, the extreme, pedantic, perfected expansion of the wonderful addendums that make general high fantasy with all its maps and sci-fi timelines and tech trees with astronomical maps so amazing.

But, as said, be aware, these stories are
The Crimson Fucker
Ever since I joined GR I’ve been putting off the writing of this book’s review… but since I’m high as fuck on cold medicine I feel like I can do it so here suffer thru it!:

Along long time ago a little 3rd world kid with an afro became fascinated of what he read on the internet about some British writer named Tolkien… he wanted his books… it became his obsession… so he embarked on a quest to find his books and read the shit out of them… but alas! The book was no where to be found on his dumb litt
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Silmarillion, J.R.R. Tolkien

The Silmarillion is a collection of mythopoeic works by English writer J.R.R. Tolkien, edited and published posthumously by his son, Christopher Tolkien, in 1977, with assistance from Guy Gavriel Kay.

The Silmarillion, along with J.R.R. Tolkien's other works, forms an extensive, though incomplete, narrative that describes the universe of Eä in which are found the lands of Valinor, Beleriand, Númenor, and Middle-earth, within which The Hobbit and The Lord of the R
Sean Barrs
Writing a review of the Silmarillion is like trying to review the Bible. Where do you even start? There’s just so much story in here. Any attempt to convey it in a review would be to do the book a massive disservice. There would only ever be enough space to talk about one or a few elements of the work.

So instead I thought I’d give my reasoning as to why every Tolkien enthusiast needs to read this in order to fully understand Tolkien: the sheer depth of the work.

“It is said by the Eldar that in
How To Build A Truly Convincing Fantasy World

1. It's all about the language. Make sure your world's language is convincing, and you're pretty much there. Conversely, if your language sucks then everything else will.

2. Your book can't include more than a few sentences in your invented language without losing your audience. But it can include plenty of names. So what people will really judge you on is the quality of the names.

The rest of this review is available elsewhere (the location cannot be g
Buddy re-read with Shii!

I’ve been contemplating whether or not to tackle the challenge of actually reviewing this masterpiece for quite some time now. In the end, after having finished reading it for the second time, I realised that I should at least throw out my thoughts on it. So here we go…

This is in my eyes the most impressive book ever written.

Notice how I did not say “best”. That was completely intentional. I do not believe it is the best book ever written, even though I know others think
Charlotte May
Aug 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: epic-fantasy
"Oh woe-begotten spirit, fall now into dark oblivion, and forget for a while the dreadful doom of life."

I must admit. I struggled.

Though I love the Lord of the Rings and the Middle Earth Universe with all of my heart, tackling a large part of its history in this manner was tough going.
The world Tolkien created is absolutely extraordinary, without a doubt. Unfortunately The Silmarillion is written as a long history or mythology of biblical proportions. Name after name, battle after battle, son
Mar 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sauron was become now a sorceror of dreadful power, master of shadows and of phantoms, foul in wisdom, cruel in strength, misshaping what he touched, twisting what he ruled, lord of werewolves; his dominion was torment.
Ah, Sauron, Maia of Aulë—beyond doubt the singularly most enthralling antagonist whom I encountered as a young reader, possessing all of the malevolence and dark charisma and naked power of Satan, but unhobbled by the multi-aspectual morphology of Christian theology and popula
Aug 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Though I had many near-misses with The Silmarillion throughout the years (having been introduced to Tolkien's universe by discovering The Hobbit in my school's library in 5th grade), I finally slogged my way through it during the summer after my sophomore year of college. The first two years of my undergraduate degree were rather gruelling, and I wanted, more than anything else at that time, to just read a bunch of books I wasn't required to read. After making my way through The Complete Sherloc ...more
Dec 11, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5/5 stars

With a new interest and determination, I have finally finished reading The Silmarillion.

I have failed this book twice and I was so sure that I won’t attempt reading it again. However, I have just finished re-watching The Lord of the Rings trilogy extended editions and reading the Three Great Tales of Middle-Earth that’s edited by Christopher Tolkien. I know this is not the recommended reading order but it's only because of doing these two activities that I found a new interest, knowle
Jul 30, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*** 2022 Reread

I reread this wonderful book in anticipation of the upcoming Prime Video series. Still as good as ever.

Tolkien tells the story of the beginning of Middle Earth and has provided us with a very cool mythology for his creation. We learn about the Valar, the Maiar (of whom Gandolf and Suaron are both members) the tribes of the elves and the fall of the great cities of the Elves in Middle Earth.

The closing chapters also talks about Numenor and the rise and fall of the that great island
Brett C(urrently deployed...can't read too much)
This is an epic masterpiece. This is the cosmology and history of Middle-earth. It starts with the creation of the world by the god-like being, Iluvatar. From there He creates angelic beings called Valar and Maiar. These beings interact with each other, create things, and the story perpetually unfolds. We learn of the creation of Elves, of Men, of Dwarves, and lots of other entities. There is Fëanor and the creation of the Silmarils, wars fought, and much more. Then there's Melkor: the angelic b ...more
The whole day, I have been trying to find the best words to use in this review, but how can you find the right words to describe perfection? This book was just a delight to read, from start to finish. The fact that a single man was able to create a fictional world with so much detail absolutely blows my mind. You can feel the love Tolkien had for Middle-earth in every word he writes. The way everything comes together makes it hard to believe that all of this is truly just fictional. There is so ...more
Hannah Greendale
In terms of reading interest, this oscillated between three and five stars, but with respect to what Tolkien accomplished here, The Silmarillion deserves nothing less than five stars.
James Trevino
Sep 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: all-time-goodies
Time for James’s unpopular opinion: I liked this better than The Lord of the Rings!

Before saying I am crazy, hear me out (actually, if you have nothing better to do, then read this review; if you have, then I gave this 5 stars, so you know my opinion anyway! See, you can’t say I don’t care for your time!).

Silmarillion tells the tale of the making of the world by Eru, the God of Middle-Earth and all that followed through the first two ages of creation, up until the events described in The Hobbit
This is the epic backstory and mythology of Middle Earth. The grandeur and beauty of the language, and indeed the content, is reminiscent of the King James edition of the Bible, beloved by Tolkien.

Its beauty is sometimes counterbalanced by its opacity. My child was keen to read it, but aged only 7 or 8, struggled, so I read it aloud, which was quite a challenge: convoluted sentences half a page long, and complex genealogy, exacerbated by characters and places referred to by two or more names fr
John Mauro
Aug 22, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
J.R.R. Tolkien turns the world-building knob all the way up to 11 in The Silmarillion, which is a masterclass in high fantasy.

This book is Biblical is scope and also Biblical in its writing style. It's not for the casual reader, but it is a goldmine for the Tolkien enthusiast.

This particular edition of The Silmarillion is gorgeous. It is published on high-quality paper and features 45 pages of beautiful artwork. The artwork truly enhances the reading experience.

This edition also includes a foldo
Jul 28, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Maybe I shouldn't have read this before The Lord of the Rings or maybe I just don't like this type of narration ('ancient myths and legends' type), but I didn't enjoy it all. Way too boring for my taste. Although Tolkien showed himself as a brilliant linguist and myth-maker it was completely impossible to follow dozens various plot lines. The amount of names (people, places, nations and events) is overwhelming and tiresome. ...more
I think of all the worlds I've visited in books, that created by Tolkien will always be my favourite.

The detail is so rich and its history so compelling that it so easily comes alive for me. If you want to know more about Middle Earth, the info is there. You just have to find the book that tells it. If you're looking for more beyond The Lord of the Rings, this is that book.

Now, I'm not going to lie - the first 150-or-so pages are a bit of a slog. This could be retitled "A Condensed History of Mi
The Silmarillion gives a clear and comprehensive history of the mythological world Tolkien created to set his Lord of Rings trilogy. In five parts, he describes the world of which Middle Earth is a part, the spirits who rule the world (who the Men called gods), the making of Elves, Men, and Dwarfs, and the events that took place in the world, especially on Middle Earth from the First Age to the Third Age. In short, The Silmarillion can be safely described as a forerunner to the Lord of the Rings ...more
Amalia Gkavea
“Among the tales of sorrow and of ruin that came down to us from the darkness of those days there are yet some in which amid weeping there is joy and under the shadow of death light that endures. And of these histories most fair still in the ears of the Elves is the tale of Beren and Lúthien”
Jen - The Tolkien Gal
Buddy read with the lovely Karishma

Karishma, you are the Tolkien queen!

Image result for silmarillion deviantart
This is actually my third time reading and I feel kinda bad because I keep picking up big new details I missed the first couple of times I read it.

Well, maybe I don't feel *THAT* bad. I mean, it is DAMN full of names and genealogies and it's probably a bit worse than having to slog through the Iliad for all that.

BUT. And here comes the huge, fire-belching butt of Melkor...

The Silmarillion is likely the best book of mythology I've ever read.
Better than any rendition of the Greeks or the Nordic.
Paul E. McPaulface
For the uninitiated, The Silmarillion is a history book of Tolkien's Middle-Earth, the land in which The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings take place (as well as many other works by Tolkien, most of them unfinished).

It's written in a very different style from his more famous works and I think a lot of people are put off by that. I have to say that, as big a Tolkien fan as I am, even I find The Silmarillion a bit dry and repetitive at times. For anybody who loves The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rin
Aug 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This is my favorite work of Tolkien so far... I have only read The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings BUT WHILST THESE ARE FANTASTIC ALREADY, THE SILMARILLION IS 10 TIMES BETTER!

In my opinion Tolkien is really brilliant at shaping a world an
The Silmarillion is difficult to read and I don't think it is even meant to be read straight through like a novel. Another reviewer put it best when he said "The Silmarillion is like the Bible, it's the Bible of Middle Earth". It's the magical setting of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings and it tells the history of the place, the inhabitants, the languages, and the legends that came before Bilbo and Frodo. For you Ring fanatics, you haven't finished the story until you've read the history. ...more
Juho Pohjalainen
"The Shadow that bred them can only mock; it cannot make: not real, new things of its own."

Imagine if instead of throwing a tantrum and trying to destroy everything, Melkor had discovered his hidden talent for satire?
Jun 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was quite apprehensive going into this. I needn't have been.

This isn't exactly a story like LOTR itself but an account of the beginning of the Tolkien universe until the events at the end of LOTR, all written in an almost novel-like fashion.

Want to know Galadriel's family tree? Or where the White Tree of Gondor comes from (the Tree of the King)? Or how the Orks were made? If Sauron was the worst and most powerful bad guy ever? What the difference between Elves, dwarves and men are? Why the elv
William Gwynne
A beautiful edition of The Silmarillion arrived today. It is immediately taking a prized spot on my bookcase. I'm feeling an irresistible desire to pick it up and read again, so I will be doing so in the coming months, following it with The Hobbit and then LOTR. Can't wait!

A video discussing why you should read The Silmarillion. Many have said it better than myself, but I hope my passion for this collection of wonderful stories can be seen.

Why You Should Read The Silmarillion
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⋆.ೃ࿔࿐ྂfaith & fan...: ⭒The Silmarillion⭒ 69 32 May 10, 2022 04:51AM  
J.R.R. Tolkien Ep...: * Quotes * 9 31 Jan 11, 2022 08:58PM  
Who's your favorite character? 33 301 Aug 30, 2021 03:38PM  
Do you think if LOTR were written in this type of narrative it would’ve been as successful? 9 48 May 14, 2021 01:44AM  
Goodreads Librari...: 9780008433956 2 13 Apr 09, 2021 03:22AM  

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John Ronald Reuel Tolkien: writer, artist, scholar, linguist. Known to millions around the world as the author of The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien spent most of his life teaching at the University of Oxford where he was a distinguished academic in the fields of Old and Middle English and Old Norse. His creativity, confined to his spare time, found its outlet in fantasy works, stories for children, p ...more

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