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Unfinished Tales

Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-Earth

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Classic hardback edition of this fascinating collection of stories, featuring Tolkien’s own painting of the dragon Glaurung on the cover, which continues the tales of The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion and contains an alternative version of The Children of Hurin.

Unfinished Tales is a collection of narratives ranging in time from the Elder Days of Middle-earth to the end of the War of the Ring, and provides those who have read The Lord of the Rings with a whole collection of background and new stories from the twentieth century’s most acclaimed popular author.

The book concentrates on the realm of Middle-earth and comprises such elements as Gandalf’s lively account of how it was that he came to send the Dwarves to the celebrated party at Bag-End, the emergence of the sea-god Ulmo before the eyes of Tuor on the coast of Beleriand, and an exact description of the military organization of the Riders of Rohan.

Unfinished Tales also contains the only story about the long ages of Numenor before its downfall, and all that is known about such matters as the Five Wizards, the Palantiri and the legend of Amroth. The tales were collated and edited by JRR Tolkien’s son and literary heir, Christopher Tolkien, who provides a short commentary on each story, helping the reader to fill in the gaps and put each story into the context of the rest of his father’s writings.

452 pages, Hardcover

First published October 1, 1980

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About the author

J.R.R. Tolkien

667 books67.5k followers
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, poetry, illustration and invented languages and alphabets.

Tolkien’s most popular works, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings are set in Middle-earth, an imagined world with strangely familiar settings inhabited by ancient and extraordinary peoples. Through this secondary world Tolkien writes perceptively of universal human concerns – love and loss, courage and betrayal, humility and pride – giving his books a wide and enduring appeal.

Tolkien was an accomplished amateur artist who painted for pleasure and relaxation. He excelled at landscapes and often drew inspiration from his own stories. He illustrated many scenes from The Silmarillion, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, sometimes drawing or painting as he was writing in order to visualize the imagined scene more clearly.

Tolkien was a professor at the Universities of Leeds and Oxford for almost forty years, teaching Old and Middle English, as well as Old Norse and Gothic. His illuminating lectures on works such as the Old English epic poem, Beowulf, illustrate his deep knowledge of ancient languages and at the same time provide new insights into peoples and legends from a remote past.

Tolkien was born in Bloemfontein, South Africa, in 1892 to English parents. He came to England aged three and was brought up in and around Birmingham. He graduated from the University of Oxford in 1915 and saw active service in France during the First World War before being invalided home. After the war he pursued an academic career teaching Old and Middle English. Alongside his professional work, he invented his own languages and began to create what he called a mythology for England; it was this ‘legendarium’ that he would work on throughout his life. But his literary work did not start and end with Middle-earth, he also wrote poetry, children’s stories and fairy tales for adults. He died in 1973 and is buried in Oxford where he spent most of his adult life.

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Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,566 reviews56k followers
November 21, 2021
Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-Earth, J.R.R. Tolkien

Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-earth is a collection of stories and essays by J.R.R. Tolkien that were never completed during his lifetime, but were edited by his son Christopher Tolkien and published in 1980.

Many of the tales within are retold in The Silmarillion, albeit in modified forms; the work also contains a summary of the events of The Lord of the Rings told from a less personal perspective.

Part One: The First Age: Of Tuor and his Coming to Gondolin; Narn i Hîn Húrin (The Tale of the Children of Húrin).

Part Two: The Second Age: A Description of the Island of Númenor; Aldarion and Erendis: The Mariner's Wife; The Line of Elros: Kings of Númenor; The History of the Galadriel and Celeborn the great.

Part Three: The Third Age: The Disaster of the Gladden Fields; Cirion and Eorl and the Friendship of Gondor and Rohan; The Quest of Erebor; The Hunt for the Ring; The Battles of the Fords of Isen.
Part Four: The Drúedain; The Istari; The Palantíri.

تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز بیست و هشتم ماه دسامبر سال2013میلادی

عنوان: قصه‌های ناتمام نومه‌ نور و سرزمین میانه - دوران دوم؛ نویسنده جان رونالد روئل (جی.آر.آر) تالکین؛ به کوشش کریستوفر تالکین؛ مترجم رضا علیزاده؛ تهران، روزنه، سال1392؛ در216ص؛ شابک9789643343873؛ چاپ دوم سال1393؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان بریتانیا - سده20م

کتاب شامل چهار بخش اصلی است که هر کدام از آنها چندین داستان را در بردارند؛ که دنباله ی هر کدام از آنها، در انبوهی از یادداشتهای تکمیلی نویسنده آمده است؛ که نقاط تاریک را روشن میسازند؛ اما به گویش خود «کریستوفر» به دلیل پراکندگیهای بسیار، در دست نوشته ها، خلاءهای داستان همچنان باقی میمانند و «کریستوفر» نیز صرفا به گمانه زنی بسنده میکند

بخش اول: بخش اول داستان «دوران اول» است؛ دو داستان «تور و آمدن او به گوندولین»، و «نارن ای هین هورین» را در بر دارد؛ داستان اول به زندگی «تور» فرزند «هور» میپردازد؛ از کودکی او که میگوید در میان شرقیها گذشت، تا تقدیر بلندش که از جانب «اولمو»، خداوندگار آبها به سوی شهر پنهان «گوندولین» روان میشود، تا به شاه «تورگون» هشدار دهد؛ او آنجا شیفته ی «ایدریل» دختر «تورگون» میشود و برق دو درخت را در چشمان دختر میبیند؛ عشق آنها فراتر از نام و نژاد آنها میرود، و با یکدیگر پیوند زناشویی میبندند؛ این ازدواج، «مایگلین» خواهر زاده پادشاه را، خوش نمیآید، و به دنبال تنفرش از «تور» و از آنسو پیشرویها و پیروزیهای متعدد «مورگوت»، شهر پنهان «گوندولین» به سوی فرجام خویش گام برمیدارد، و ماجراهای اندوهباری را تجربه میکند؛ از بین این تاریکیهاست که نوری میدرخشد و آن تواناترین دریانورد ترانه ها از مهلکه نجات پیدا میکند

بخش دوم: این بخش، روایتگر دوران دوم سرزمین میانه است؛ و شامل داستانهای «وصف جزیره نومه نور»، داستان «آلداریون و ارندیس»، «دودمان الروس: شاهان نومه نور» و «سرگذشت گالادریل و کله بورن» و در باب «آمروت شاه لورین» است؛ این داستانها رخدادهای دوران دوم هستند و بیشتر درباره ی «نومه نور» است؛ جزیره ای که به شاهان آدمیان داده میشد تا در آن سکونت کنند؛ «آلداریون» و «ارندیس» داستان عشقی است، که تبدیل به نفرت میگردد؛ و پس از آن رخدادهای مربوط به هر کدام از شاهان بررسی میشود؛ سرگذشت «گالادریل» و «کله بورن»، و در باب «آمروت» شاه «لورین» داستانی در سرزمین میانه است، که در این کتاب آمده است

بخش سوم: در این بخش داستانهایی از دوران سوم را، که با جنگ حلقه رابطه دارند، میخوانیم؛ داستانهایی همچون «مصیبت دشتهای گلادن»، «گیریون و ائورل و دوستی گوندور و روهان»، داستان «پویش اره بور»، «شکار حلقه»، و «جنگهای گدار آیزن» را در بر دارد؛ در داستان نخست از افسانه ی مرگ «ایسیلدور» میخوانیم، داستانی که روایتگر حمله ی «اورک»ها به «ایسیلدور»، در «دشتهای گلادن» است، که طی آن «ایسیلدور» کشته میشود، و حلقه در «آندوین» بزرگ غرق میشود؛ و مدتی طولانی در آنجا پنهان میماند؛ سپس از اتحاد «گیریون» و «ائورل»، و شکلگیری قلمرو «روهان»، و روابط دوستانه آنها با «گوندور» میخوانیم، چیزیکه چکیده ای از آن، در پیوستهای ارباب حلقه ها منتشر شده است؛

داستان «پویش اره بور» که در دهه1950میلادی، توسط «تالکین» برای نخستین بار به رشته تحریر درآمد، قرار بود ابتدا بخشی از کتاب «ارباب حلقه ها» باشد، اما تالکین نظر خود را دیگر کرد، و تنها بخش کوتاهی از آنرا در پیوستها آورد؛ دو نسخه از داستان موجود است، یکی از زبان «فرودو بگینز» است، و دیگری که گمان میرود اصیلتر باشد روایت «گندالف سپید» است، از سفرشان به «اره بور»، که برای «فرودو بگینز»، در «میناس تی ریت»، پس از تاجگذاری شاه «اله سار»، میگوید؛ در فصل «شکار حلقه»، با جزئیات بیشتری از «شورای الروند»، و نیز سرنوشت «گولوم»، پس از زندانی شدن در «موردور»؛ و در آخرین بخش، تحت عنوان «جنگهای گدر آیزن»، با بخشی از داستان نبرد حلقه آشنا میشویم، که کمتر به آن پرداخته شده است؛ این داستان روایتگر کشته شدن «تئودرد» پسر شاه «تئودن»، طی جنگهایی است که در سواحل رود «آیزن»، پیش از رسیدن «گندالف»، و «آراگورن»، و «لگولاس»، و «گیملی»، به «ادوراس» رخ داد. نبردی که راه را برای تجاوز به «شاخ آواز» هموار کرد

بخش چهارم: سه فصل «دروادان»، «ایستاری» و «پلانتیری» است؛ در فصل نخست تاریخ نژاد «دروادان» در دوران اول در «بلریاند» بعنوان عضوی از قوم «هالادین» میآید؛ طی دوران دوم بخشی در نومه نور ساکن میشوند، و بخشی به «آندراست»، در غرب «گوندور» میآیند، و نیز در دوران سوم به «روهیریم ها» در نبرد «پله نور» یاری کرده، و آنها را از مسیری امنتر و سریعتر راهنمایی کردند؛ در ارباب حلقه ها این ماجرا آمده است؛ در فصل دوم «ایستاری» با پنج جادوگری آشنا میشویم که به سرزمین میانه فرستاده شدند؛ و در فصل سوم هر آنچه لازم است درباره سنگهای «پلانتیر» بدانیم آمده است؛

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 13/01/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ 29/08/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Terry .
394 reviews2,142 followers
May 31, 2013
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. Just reading the fragment that makes up the entirety of "Of Tuor and his Coming to Gondolin" makes me weep for what might have been. Given the chance to expand even half of the partial tales from _The Silmarillion_ into something equating the full treatment of the LotR would have been a wonder indeed.

Even given the incomplete nature of the works herein, the reader is greatly repaid the effort of reading them even though many tantalizing questions are left unanswered. We get perhaps the only significant view of the land of Numenor in the Second Age; intriguing glimpses into the nature of the Istari, the Woodwoses, and the Palantiri; and expansions on the background of the Third Age and the events that led up to both The Hobbit and the LotR.

A really amazing work and enjoyable read if you're a die-hard Tolkien fan.
Profile Image for Sean Barrs .
1,109 reviews44.2k followers
March 26, 2021
I have always found it difficult to write about Tolkien’s work because it is the pillar in which modern fantasy is built upon.

Indeed, without Tolkien fantasy would not be the shape it is today. It would be something different. And a lot of readers and writers recognise this, but I do not think we always appreciate the full extent of it. He created so many character archetypes, popularised race differences and envisioned such a great world full of depth. Every fantasy book that came after has a little bit of Tolkien in it.

What is strikingly important to understand about Tolkien is that The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings are but the tip of the tip of his world. There is so much story, so much historical detail, so many different languages and people that the novels were unable to fully capture it. This is not a criticism, but a mere reflection that books like this and The Silmarillion do wonders and capturing the vast scope of Middle-Earth because there is so much happening (and that has already happened) when the events of his novels take place.

There is also so much magic surrounding it all that remains a mystery, and here that is expanded upon a little. The Istari are given a bit more depth in an essay that details their coming to middle-earth along with their purpose and origin. The Palantirs, and their effects and usage, are padded out too. There’s a snippet on Isildur, the conflict between Rohan and Isegard (which lead to Theodred’s death) is detailed and an encounter between the Witch-King and Grima Wormtongue is brought to life which adds more to the events of The Lord of the Rings and the hunt for the ring. Also included is The Children of Hurin which takes up a third of the text.

These are unfinished drafts. And it would be interesting to know what Tolkien felt about them. Part of me thinks he wrote them for himself, at least some of them, as a reference point as he wrote around these events and tales. We know that he one day wanted to publish The Silmarillion when he felt it was finished, but beyond that I do not know. I just cannot imagine him sending some of these bits to publishers. Nonetheless, I am grateful to be able to read them.

If you have made it this far into my review, it will be clear that this book will only appeal to the most devout of Tolkien fans. It is certainly not a book you want to pick up if you are unfamiliar with his work and world, but for those that love his writing as much as I do, there is certainly a lot to be gained from reading this.


You can connect with me on social media via My Linktree.
Profile Image for Bradley.
Author 5 books3,910 followers
August 22, 2019
Out of all the posthumously published works of Tolkien, and this being the primary right after the Silmarillion, I have to admit it is the most interesting. We do get more expanded treatments of some of these tales in subsequent books, but all in all, the narrative structure of this tome is quite pleasing.

Why? It's written as actual stories. Not just excerpts, or not only just as excerpts, but as full-fledged stories in themselves, complete with all the storytelling conventions we are used to.

That is to say, it doesn't read super quick like Silmarillion, but full of detail and meat like LotR. I appreciated that little detail. :)

Of personal interest and joy, I absolutely loved the way this filled in so many of the blanks within the LotR stories, giving a much more detailed history of the Ring Wraiths, their creation, the Palantirs, the Maiar, (including such personages as Gandalf, Saruman, AND Sauron), the full histories of the Rohirrim, Gondor, Numenor, and EVEN the Wild Men!

There's a lot that was left out of the Silmarillion, and THIS HAS IT.

I'm not saying some parts could be classified in the OTHER category, such as the extended appendix at the end of LotR, only more so. Or the full damn concordance including an index of all terms, proper names and places with references to their original first-mentions. I.E., Silmarillion or LotR.

This work is an awfully necessary addition for any would-be scholar of Arda. I can't say if it beats the FULL The Return of the Shadow: The History of The Lord of the Rings, Part One, The Treason of Isengard: The History of The Lord of the Rings, Part Two, The War of the Ring, or Sauron Defeated: The History of The Lord of the Rings, Part Four scholarly works, but for my poor, lazy-reading self, Unfinished Tales does a FINE job. :)
Profile Image for Persephone's Pomegranate.
36 reviews109 followers
Want to read
March 5, 2023
Traveling back to Middle-earth for some drama.


Me: I'm reading another Tolkien novel.

My friends and family:

Aragorn is not real. We've been over this.
The one about the evil jewelry?
Fantasy novels are so unrealistic. You should read a romance novel.
I love Lord of the Rings. Dumbledore is so cool.
It's time for you to find a husband.


No, I don't know anyone who enjoys reading fantasy novels. Yes, my mother believes the romance genre is more realistic than fantasy. My best friend, with whom I share many interests, finds Lord of the Rings and Star Wars ridiculous. She thinks Star Wars is hilarious and not in a good way.

I am alone in the wilderness.

Well, not really. That's why I have Goodreads. I hope to be more active this year; we'll see how it goes.

All about that place, up the seaward slopes and far into the land, grew the evergreen and fragrant trees that they brought out of the West, and so throve there that the Eldar said that almost it was fair as a haven in Eressëa. They were the greatest delight of Númenor, and they were remembered in many songs long after they had perished for ever, for few ever flowered east of the Land of Gift: oiolairë and lairelossë, nessamelda, vardarianna, taniquelassë, and yavannamírë with its globed and scarlet fruits. Flower, leaf, and rind of those trees exuded sweet scents, and all that country was full of blended fragrance; therefore it was called Nísimaldar, the Fragrant Trees. Many of them were planted and grew, though far less abundantly, in other regions of Númenor; but only here grew the mighty golden tree malinornë, reaching after five centuries a height scarce less than it achieved in Eressëa itself. Its bark was silver and smooth, and its boughs somewhat upswept after the manner of the beech; but it never grew save with a single trunk. Its leaves, like those of the beech but greater, were pale green above and beneath were silver, glistering in the sun; in the autumn they did not fall, but turned to pale gold. In the spring it bore golden blossom in clusters like a cherry, which bloomed on during the summer; and as soon as the flowers opened the leaves fell, so that through spring and summer a grove of malinorni was carpeted and roofed with gold, but its pillars were of grey silver. 1 Its fruit was a nut with a silver shale; and some were given as a gift by Tar-Aldarion, the sixth King of Númenor, to King Gil-galad of Lindon.


I'm off to the kingdom of Númenor. I'm sure nothing bad is going to happen to the island. 🤷
Profile Image for leynes.
1,083 reviews2,930 followers
December 16, 2018
I am fairly new to Tolkien as I have only gotten into his work at the end of 2015 by reading, and after some initial problems, loving The Hobbit. I buddy-read The Lord of the Rings over the course of 2016 and was quite overwhelmed with Tolkien’s dense writing style and complex world building; there were too many names of people, places and events to remember, I felt inept. Nonetheless, I admired his work and marvelled at his craft. I was especially enamoured by Tolkien’s linguistic interest and his rational for his invented languages and names.

In September 2016, I read The Silmarillion—that was the time I became totally electrified. The Silmarillion is still my absolute favorite work of his, even though it was just as overwhelming in regards to being exposed to all sorts of different people and their backstories, the tales, however, had a certain charm and brilliancy to them, I grew to love so many characters (Fëanor, Túrin Turambar and Lúthien), I needed to know more about them. That’s why I decided to jump into The Children of Húrin in April 2017. Upon finishing it, I cried and cried. Tolkien showed that he cannot only write epic high fantasy well, but also the most heart-shattering tragedies. Húrin and Morwen deserved better!

In the second half of 2017 I got into his works that aren’t related to Middle-Earth: Tales from the Perilous Realm and Roverandom. These reads solidified Tolkien as one of my absolute favorite authors. No matter which endeavour this man took upon, he handled it with great care and detail. The whimsical nature of these stories reminded me of The Hobbit, and the long journey I had personally made alongside Tolkien and his work.

In April 2018, Christmas and winter long past us, I read Letters from Father Christmas because why the heck not? It was the second time I bawled my eyes out reading his work. It is by far his most personal work (naturally, given its nonfictional nature); to glimpse at the man behind his writing—to see the kind of father he was—was fascinating and warmed my heart. His love, not only for his children but for storytelling, is so apparent throughout all of these Christmas letters.

And this leads us, finally, to my read of his Unfinished Tales. I bough it almost a year ago but was too intimidated by it, having just read and loved The Silmarillion, to pick it up immediately. This week prove to be the perfect time to take upon this new adventure. Exploring the world of Númenor and Middle-Earth never gets old.

Tolkien’s Unfinished Tales weren’t difficult to read at all. They are definitely not for newbies and people unfamiliar with his work, but if you have read The Silmarillion, you should be fine. It provides more detailed information about characters, events and places mentioned only briefly in The Lord of the Rings. Versions of such tales include the origins of Gandalf and the other Istari, the death of Isildur and the loss of the One Ring in the Gladden Fields, and the founding of the kingdom of Rohan.

My favourite tales were definitely "Of Tuor and his Coming to Gondolin", "Narn i Hîn Húrin", "Aldarion and Erendis: The Mariner's Wife" and "The Quest of Erebor". The reason for that is probably the fact that these were the most complete. These narratives were very endearing, suspenseful and well-written. The notes and appendices definitely heightened my understanding of them and helped me expand my knowledge of Middle-Earth.

I thought it was very clever of Christopher Tolkien to put all of the tales and essays in chronological order, the first three parts aligning with the timeline of Arda by being split into the three ages of the world. The fourth part was a collection of short essays concerning the Drúedain, the Istari and the Palantíri.

Of course, it is kind of unsatisfying (and in some places even frustrating) that the tales and essays are incomplete and sometimes even contradictory, e.g. "Of Tuor and his Coming to Gondolin" cuts off at the most interesting part: when Tuor eventually reached Gondolin and was admitted by Turgon. What happened after that, i.e. the fact that Turgon did not hearken the council of Ulmo, and the ensuing fall of Gondolin, is, unfortunately, not included. Nonetheless, I think that Christopher Tolkien did a fantastic job of curating his father’s writings and putting them into an intelligent form and order.

Reading Unfinished Tales made me even more curious about Middle-Earth and what lay beyond, especially the First Age is of great interest to me. I’m still trying to figure out what to think of Galadriel, I want to know more about the downfall of Númenor and Gondolin … I am consoled only by the fact that Beren and Lúthien and The Fall of Gondolin have yet to be read by me. As soon as they’re available in my preferred editions I shall devour them.
Profile Image for Nikola Pavlovic.
268 reviews40 followers
November 20, 2022
Neizmerno bogatstvo za sve ljubitelje Tolkinovog dela.

Poslednji put sam je procitao kao pripremu za knjigu The Fall of Númenor.
Profile Image for Joseph.
676 reviews85 followers
March 21, 2020
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 are presented with introductions, footnotes, endnotes and editorial insertions, of which more anon. Several of the pieces are familiar, being expanded (albeit partial) versions of, e.g., the tales of Tuor and Túrin that were presented in brief form in The Silmarillion. Others provide glimpses of events leading up to, and that took place offstage during, the War of the Ring, beginning with the death of Isildur and the loss of the One Ring and continuing to include battles that were taking place "offstage" during the events of The Two Towers and The Return of the King. The book closes with essays about the Druedain (the Pukel-men), the Istari (the Wizards) and the Palantiri.

Fascinating stuff, if you don't mind its incomplete and sometimes contradictory nature.

Unfortunately I'm not sure if I can recommend the electronic version (which is what I read this time; previously, I was reading a print copy). The textual situation for many of the pieces is complex -- as mentioned above, there are footnotes and endnotes (some added by J.R.R. Tolkien during his drafting process and some added by Christopher Tolkien when assembling the pieces for publication) and editorial notes and changes of voice between the text and the commentary on the text. In the physical book this is handled by various combinations of font size and indentation; all of this formatting is lost in the electronic version, making it sometimes hard to distinguish the tales from the commentary. Footnotes and endnotes are better handled (on the Kindle you can hyperlink from the text to the associated note) but it's still less convenient than just flipping back and forth in a physical book. And finally, there were many more typos in the eBook than I'm comfortable with -- mostly things like missing spaces, hyphens dropped (or inappropriately retained) and the like. Nothing that rendered the text unreadable, but it still seemed to indicate a lack of editorial oversight on the eBook conversion process.
Profile Image for Chris Hall.
Author 6 books11 followers
March 13, 2013
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 corners of Middle Earth.

I will say, though, that Christopher Tolkien deserves some credit for being a very conscientious offspring. Most children either end up hating their parents or thinking of them as basically foolish. JRR Tolkien's son, though is extraordinarily careful to give the exact providence and goes into excruciating detail as to the provenance of every piece of writing in Unfinished Tales. Never does he indulge himself in the slightest bit of irony at the expense of his father, or even hint at any frustration that, just maybe, he could have made his marginal annotations in more legible handwriting. The subtext of the father-son relationship, or lack thereof, might make this an interesting read... unless it actually doesn't. Really, for LotR/Middle Earth obsessives only.
Profile Image for Peiman.
255 reviews42 followers
October 2, 2022
قصه‌های تا تمام در نسخه‌ی انگلیسی اصلی ۴۱۵ صفحه هست در حالی که این ترجمه ۲۱۶ صفحه و تا اونجایی که من دیدم تمام مطالب اون کتاب اینجا نیست حالا چرا نمیدونم ولی دیدم جدیدا نشر روزنه این کتاب رو مجددا با شکل جدید و صفحات بیشتر چاپ کرده که احتمالا اون کامل باشه و پیشنهاد میکنم اون رو تهیه کنید. در هر حال این کتاب اکثرش در مورد نومه‌نور سرزمین انسانهاست و توضیحاتی راجع به اسامی و چگونگی و تعداد سال و سن پادشاهان اونجا و به طور مفصل تر در مورد یکی از اونها آلداریون و همسرش ارندیس آورده. و بعد از اون هم در مورد گالادریل مفصل صحبت کرده. جذابیتش در حد کتابهای دیگه نیست ولی اطلاعاتش جالبه و بهتره بعد از هابیت و ارباب حلقه‌ها و سیلماریلیون خونده بشه.ه
Profile Image for Celia🪐.
505 reviews1 follower
September 29, 2022
¿Honestamente? Se me ha hecho muy bola la lectura de este libro. Mucho. Si lo hubiera sabido, quizás no lo habría cogido, por lo menos no ahora . Como de sobra es sabido, Tolkien es un narrador que está para ser leído lentamente, saboreandolo y parándose en todo lo que dice y en el como. Y quizás por eso no era el autor más apropiado para el periodo en el que estoy. Entre que tengo mucho trabajo, mucho estudio, problemas varios y pocas ganas de leer, quizás hubiera tenido que aparcar el libro y dejarlo para un momento más propicio para disfrutarlo como realmente creo se merece. Y todo esto me da mucha rabia, porque realmente estoy muy emocionada con ahondar más en el universo Tolkien antes de empezar, de una vez por todas, la relectura de “El Señor de los Anillos” y “El Hobbit”, una de mis futuras metas lectoras a corto plazo.

“Los Cuentos Inconclusos” es una recopilación de cuentos y ensayos que tratan sobre distintos temas e historias que su autor dejo inacabadas, sin aparente relación entre ellos y que posteriormente fueron unificadas y editadas por su hijo Christopher. Pero ese aspecto es, también, parte de su gracia y de su magia: cuando acabas un relato no sabes como va a ser el siguiente, ni que te vas a encontrar en él. Pero, al mismo tiempo, también resulta un handicap. Muchas de las narraciones que aparecen aquí son meras descripciones de lugares; otras genealogías de reyes; y en no pocas partes tienen un carácter meramente filológico (centrándose en el origen de los nombres de lugares y personajes según los idiomas inventados por Tolkien) o de ilustrar los cambios y diferentes versiones de historias, cuentos o personajes que el propio autor forjó dentro de su corpus.

Ha habido un poco de todo, cuentos y ensayos que he disfrutado mucho junto con otros que me han costado más finalizar. Pero creo firmemente que ninguno de ellos está de más o no merece la pena. Es muy interesante ver como el legendarium de Tolkien fue, al fin de al cabo, fruto de un proceso creador y literario que se dio durante años y que fue evolucionando con el paso del tiempo. Además, muchos de estos textos enriquecen o dan contexto o información adicional de lo que conocemos que pasó en “El Hobbit”, “El Señor de los Anillos” y los famosos Anales que acompañan a esta trilogía y dan al lector más datos sobre la historia de la Tierra Media y le ayudan a entender mejor y saber más de la historia del lugar .

El libro se divide en cuatro partes diferenciadas: la primera se centra en aspectos y cuentos relacionados con el Silmarillion; la segunda en el reino de Numenor; la tercera (que como digo más adelante es la que más he disfrutado) en lo que paso en la trilogía del “El Señor de los Anillos” y “El Hobbit”, gracias a lo cual descubrimos cosas que sucedieron paralelamente a lo que se contaba en los libros; y, por último, la cuarta parte incide en información sobre la raza de los Drúedain, sobre los Istari (los cinco magos maiar enviados por los Valar a la Tierra Media, siendo los dos más famosos Gandalf y Saruman) y, por último, sobre las Palantiri, las piedras videntes. Como podéis ver, no todos los relatos son meramente narrativos. Muchos de ellos son más bien informativos, se centran en aspectos culturales, sociales históricos o bélicos de la Tierra Media.

Entre las historias que más he disfrutado, destaco la de “La Búsqueda de Eredor”, en la que descubrimos como Gandalf se las ingenio para incluir a Bilbo Bolsón dentro del grupo de enamos que iban a Eredor en “El Hobbit”. Sin duda, volver a oír a Gandalf ha sido toda una delicia. Tiene una forma de narrar muy vivaz y disfrutable, esta lectura me ha recordado porque es un personaje tan amado, además de saber más cosas sobre todo lo que se cocía detras de las escenas en “El Hobbit”. Al respecto de lo acontecido en esta novela, también se ahonda en la búsqueda del anillo en el cuento que lleva ese mismo titulo. Aunque estas historias hayan sido mis dos preferidas, no son las únicas que he disfrutado. También me ha gustado mucho ha sido la de “Aldarion y Erendis”, una historia de amor muy realista dentro de este mundo de fantasía,con unos personajes muy bien esbozados y que nos permite conocer más del reino de Numenor. Por último, una de las lecturas que más interesante me ha parecido ha sido “La Historia de Galadriel y Celeborn”. Como buena seguidora de Tolkien, Galadriel es un personaje que siempre me ha llamado mucho la atención y que me ha generado muchas preguntas. Tiene un papel muy prominente dentro del legendarium de Tolkien y es una de las figuras con más peso dentro de este mundo. Siempre me ha descolocado un poco (y esto es algo personal) lo diferentes y a la vez complementarias que son la presentación que hace de ella Cate Blanchett en las películas de Peter Jackson respecto a como aparece en la película animada de 1978 (gracias a la cual yo conocí el mundo de Tolkien y que creo que tiene para mi el récord de ser la cinta que más alquile en los antiguos videoclubs. Que recuerdos). Por eso he valorado tanto que en un texto si nos de más información ya no solo sobre cómo ha evolucionado su biografía, también sobre su propia historia familiar y sobre su personalidad. Confirma que es de lejos uno de los personajes más interesantes de toda la saga.

Pocas semanas antes de iniciarme con este libro, en verano, volví a sumergirme en una obra de Tolkien editada por su hijo Christopher, en este caso centrada en el cuento de “Beren y Lúthien”. En “Cuentos inconclusos de Númenor y la Tierra Media” he encontrado el mismo problema que encontré en el anterior libro, de ahí que me permita copiar lo que escribí en la reseña de ese libro: “una vez más, solo puedo poner el enfásis en la forma de narrar y de escribir de Tolkien. Su importancia en la historia de la literatura no solo bebe en sus enormes facultades como filólogo, escritor, filósofo y creador de mundos, en la forma en que lograba que toda esa fantasía se convirtiera en algo cercano y creíble para el lector. También se debía a lo hermosamente narrado que estaba todo lo que salía de su pluma. Hay algo poético, lejano y melancólico en su forma de escribir. Sus frases son de una belleza brillante pero sutil, llenas de fuerza y encanto. Sus palabras transportan totalmente al lector dentro de la historia y los avatares que deben superar la pareja protagonista, creando personajes que beben de la fantasía, si, pero cuyas personalidades, para bien o para mal, están enraizadas en lo más hondo de lo que conlleva la humanidad. Contrasta con el tono más enciclopédico y árido de su hijo, que está más pendiente de lo técnico de la narrativa y de lo filológico que de lo meramente literario”. El no en pocas ocasiones, tengo que reconocer que las partes escritas por Christopher Tolkien (que muchas veces superan el texto original de su padre) se me hicieron demasiado densas y tediosas, con mucho gusto hubiera pasado de ellas. Hay que reconocerle a Christopher la inmensa labor que hizo a la hora de editar muchos de los textos de su padre, y de explicarlos, de forma que todo su inconmensurable trabajo fuera más comprensible y llegasen al lector de a pie muchos textos que de otra forma se hubieran perdido. Pero si hay algo que no puedo perdonar de esta edición es que las notas complementarias del texto vengan detrás del mismo, obligándote a cambiar de páginas para buscar la información. Eso es algo que absolutamente odio en cualquier libro, que creo que me han ralentizado muchísimo la lectura. Al menos para mí. Habrá quien sea fan de este tipo de anotaciones, pero yo no puedo con eso. Y más cuando la inmensa mayoría de esas notas son excesivamente extensas, explica más que el propio texto principal.

Lo que está claro, es que sin haberte leído antes las obras fundamentales del mundo Tolkien (“Silmarillion” incluido), la lectura de “Cuentos inconclusos de Númenor y la Tierra Media” es una lectura que puede resultar, cuanto menos, farragosa o incomprensible. Es un libro pensado para los fans más acérrimos de Tolkien, para aquellos que quieren ahondar más en el complejo mundo que es la tierra media y saber más cosas sobre su historia y sus personajes, conocer más detalles y curiosidades de los mismos. En no pocos momentos resulta angustiante de leer, ante la avalancha de fechas, nombres y vidas de personajes poco conocidos( que no siempre tienen porque interesar al lector); descripciones geográficas; datos sobre nombres y lenguas; notas y aportaciones varias. Personalmente, lamento que tanto mi momento actual como la propia naturaleza del libro hayan impedido que hayas podido disfrutar de él tanto como estaba deseando que pase así. Así que mi consejo es este: si te gusta Tolkien adelante. Te enteras de muchas cosas leyendo este libro, y hay momentos historias realmente buenas. Como fan de este autor no han sido pocos los momentos en que disfrutado enormemente de esta lectura (aunque solo sea porque lo he leído mientras iba saliendo la serie de Amazon y me he puesto de fondo la banda sonora de la misma). Pero eso sí, tómatelo con calma y saboreando los buenos momentos. Aunque a veces tal avalancha de información te dejé abrumado y perdido, al final siempre hay algo que te llama la atención y acabas por disfrutarlo.
100 reviews87 followers
July 22, 2016
خواندن درباره ی آردا و جهان خیالی و در عین حال واقعی تالکین، مثل نشستن سر کلاس های تاریخ است! هر کدام از شخصیت ها خاندانی دارد که می توان ردش را حتی تا ظهور الف ها در سرزمین میانه دنبال کرد. برای خواندن کتاب های تالکین (به خصوص یادداشتهایی که پسرش در قالب کتاب چاپ کرده) به قلم و کاغذ و اطلس سرزمین میانه نیاز است. حتی ریشه یابی اسامی و کلمات هم می تواند یکی از کلیدی ترین کار های حین خواندن باشد!
این کتاب درباره ی حوادث نومه نور و دوران دوم آرداست. جالب ترین ویژگی کتاب تشابه بسیار سلطنت نومه نور به خاندان سلطنتی انگلستان بود. این که مهم نیست فرزند ارشد پسر باشد و یا دختر، در هرصورت فرزند ارشد به سلطنت می رسد. وجود ارندیس به عنوان اولین شخصیت فمنیست افراطی که به دور از همه ی مردان زندگی می کرد و دخترش را به تنهایی بزرگ می کرد نیز از نکات قابل توجه این کتاب بود.
خواندن سرگذشت گالادریل و کله‌بورن برایم سخت بود. سیلماریلیون را حدود پنج شش سال پیش خوانده ام و نژاد های مختلف الف ها را به یاد نمی آوردم. اگر زمانی حوصله داشته باشم و بتوانم دوباره سیلماریلیون را مرور کنم، باز هم به سراغ گالادریل برمی‌گردم.

پ.ن: ترجمه ی کتاب مثل همیشه کاری بی‌نقص بود از رضا علیزاده. مهم ترین ویژگی برای ترجمه ی آثار تالکین اطلاع از جهانِ اوست که فکر می کنم آقای علیزاده این اطلاعات را دارد. تنها ایرادی که می توانم به کتاب بگیرم مشکلات ویرایش است. به نظرم نشر روزنه باید یک ویراستار خبره استخدام کند تا آن همه ویرگولِ جا افتاده و اشتباهات تایپی و... در کتاب هایش دیده نشود. ارباب حلقه ها و سیلماریلیون و فرزندان هورین هم اشکالات ویرایش بسیاری داشتند.
Profile Image for Kathrin.
1,366 reviews12 followers
September 1, 2021
I still very much enjoyed my reread of the Unfinished Tales because it gives so much information to the world of Middle-Earth and unearths a lot of connections. I like that it mentions the references in The Lord of the Rings so that you can get a better understanding of the overall story.
Profile Image for Alexandru.
59 reviews1 follower
December 18, 2022
Captivată ! Recomand , daca într-adevăr iubiți universul lui Tolkien!
Am aflat unele lucruri extraordinare despre personaje principale ! Despre inele și despre sfârșitul al patrulea EV
Profile Image for Kayıp Rıhtım.
362 reviews247 followers
February 22, 2016
Yüzüklerin Efendisi her sayfasında hem edebiyatının yumruğunu masaya vuran hem de kurgusu ve karakterleriyle insanı alıp götüren bir başyapıttı. Fakat Silmarillion adeta akademik bir çalışmaydı. O ana kadar hep büyük ustanın bir dünya kurguladığını, başarılı karakterlere kalemiyle can verip koca kadim topraklarda kaderlerini çizmeye yolladığını düşünmüştük. Oysa ta baştan yanılmıştık. Çünkü Tolkien bir dünya kurgulamadı, hayır. O gerçek anlamda kendi özünden bir dünya “yarattı.” Belki de Eru Ilúvatar başından beri kendisiydi de, biz bunu anlamak için o eseri okumak zorundaydık.

Tüm bunları anlamamızı sağlayan o muazzam eser aynı zamanda pek çok kişi tarafından da hayatının kitabı addedilmiştir. Ve işte, Bitmemiş Öyküler de Silmarillion’un tahtını sağlamlaştırmak adına var.

Öykülerin her biri ayrı birer şaheser. Fakat burada oğul Cristopher Tolkien’in emeği hiçbir şekilde göz ardı edilemez. Kitabın başında yer alan neyi neden yaptığına dair sayfalarca açıklama, her öykü sonunda abartısız 30-50 arası dipnot ve 3-4 tane Ek ne kadar titiz bir çalışma yürüttüğünün en kesin kanıtı. Ayrıca babasının her öyküsü için diğer müsveddelerine de değinip neden bu versiyonu seçtiğinin bile açıklamasını yapmayı bir borç biliyor.

Orta-Dünya’nın geçitleri sevenlerine yol vermek için bir kez daha açıldı. Şimdiyse sıra o geçitlerden geçip yeniden gölgeye karşı dik duracak, onun temas ettiği yüreklerdeki karanlığı söküp atacak kahramanlarda. Ama bunun için önce Tolkien’in rehberliğiyle bilgilerine ihtiyacımız var; Bitmemiş Öyküler de tam olarak bunu yapmak için burada. Bana da keyifli okumalar demek düşüyor.

- Hazal ÇAMUR

İncelemenin tamamı için:
Profile Image for Neil R. Coulter.
1,055 reviews100 followers
December 25, 2020
A year of Tolkien! This year I decided to reread all the main Middle-Earth books: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and now finishing the year with Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-Earth. It had been several years since my last reading of all of these, and it’s been such fun to go back to stories that are so familiar to me that it’s almost more like re-remembering parts of my own memories than rereading a series of books.

I’ve had a soft spot for Unfinished Tales since my wonderful wife bought me a paperback copy in college. It’s not as complete (obviously) as LOTR, nor as smoothed-out as The Silmarillion, but it doesn’t have as many commentary intrusions from Christopher Tolkien as the History of Middle-Earth series. It’s just a set of fascinating glimpses into various regions of Middle-Earth history, some that are nearly finished (stories about Tuor and Túrin) and others that are contradictory fragments from here and there (Galadriel and Celeborn). Because the chapters move relatively quickly (after the first two lengthy stories) from one scene to the next, I find it to be an enjoyable read.
Profile Image for Psychophant.
468 reviews19 followers
March 23, 2008
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 storytelling moments (specially in the tales about Hurin and his children), but mostly it is not so interesting, except in an academic way, to see how Tolkien constructed and evolved his stories.
Profile Image for elpida_la_blue.
109 reviews32 followers
March 30, 2022
Όχι απλά αξίζει να διαβαστεί, επιβάλλεται για τους λάτρεις. Είναι γεμάτο πληροφορίες που ήξερες ότι ήθελες, όπως μια ανάλυση για τους Ιστάρι και μια διήγηση για την πτώση του Ισίλντουρ, αλλά και που δεν ήξερες ότι υπάρχουν για να θέλεις (εγώ προσωπικά τουλάχιστον), όπως οι ακριβείς επαφές του Θόριν με τον Γκάνταλφ πριν ξεκινήσει η αποστολή στο Έρεμπορ και γιατί προέκυψε το συμβόλαιο με τον Μπίλμπο ως κλέφτη.
Δεν είναι ελαφρύ ανάγνωσμα, αλλά πιάστε το οπωσδήποτε!
Profile Image for daisy.
574 reviews100 followers
September 29, 2018
The 'Tolkien kick' continues.

4-4.5 stars after a little more thought.

I feel like this is definitely gonna be a book that I need to re-read every year to try and get as much as I can out of it. Same with The Silmarillion and The Lord of the Rings tbh.

I love Middle-earth so much.
Profile Image for Dexcell.
160 reviews33 followers
July 12, 2021
Such a fun book. I loved all the cut content in this. Especially the third age stuff. It's such a bummer that he never finished so much.
Profile Image for Larnacouer  de SH.
686 reviews151 followers
December 31, 2021
Bir devrin sonu. 😭🥰

Dokunmayın çok fenayım, kendime gelirsem yorum yazarım.
Profile Image for Sara Rastakhiz.
123 reviews36 followers
May 1, 2020
کتاب خیلی خوبی بود توش یه سری از حکایاتی که توی سیلماریلیون خلاصه بود کامل تر شده بود و البته سعی شده بود به مهم ترین سوالایی که موقع خوندن ارباب حلقه ها و سیلماریلیون برای خواننده پیش میاد مثل هویت اصلی گاندالف یا اینکه روهان چجور روهان شد و یا پلانتیرا و .... جواب داده بشه. من خیلی دوست داشتم. لحن تالکین واقعا قشنگه...(در مورد ترجمه اش نمیدونم) اما در خود زبان انگلیسی انگار نشستی جلوی اتیش و به یه افسانه از زبان یه قصه گوی ماهر گوش میدی.(حداقل من اصلا اخساس نمیکنم دارم کتاب میخونم)
البته توی این کتاب یه بخشهای بزرگیشم جنبه مطالعاتی و تحقیقاتی داشت مثلا در مورد ورژن های مختلف حکایات و تطابق اونها با سایر داستانها و یا زمان نگارش داستانها....در کل بنظرم کل اثار تالکین اکر کسی واقعا طرفدار ژانر حماسی-فانتزی هست، باید خونده بشن...چون واقعا بین اثار قدیمی و اثار جدید کمتر اثری دیدم که یه دنیای کامل رو اینقدر با ظرافت و جزییات ساخته باشه با تاریخچه و زبان و اصلا در وصف نیست برام؟! من ۲۰ سال طرفدار و عضو این فندومم
Profile Image for Isabella.
418 reviews35 followers
November 6, 2020
Rating: 4 stars

This was good, but I absolutely do not recommend the audiobook. In fact, I'd advise against it. Not because the audiobook was bad in anyway, but because of the sheer amount of footnotes that are included. It really grates on you hearing "note number X: blah blah blah end of note" every five seconds in the middle of a sentence. I tried not to let this affect my rating, but I will still have to reread it physically to really confirm.
Profile Image for Skallagrimsen.
225 reviews39 followers
March 25, 2023
J.R.R. Tolkien must be in the running for title of "most prolific dead author in history." Several times as many books have been published under his byline since his death in 1973 than ever appeared during his lifetime. These included the mammoth Twelve Volume History of Middle Earth, which encompasses, I presume, everything the man ever jotted down on a napkin about his imaginary world, published in hardcover together with copious editorial analysis and explanatory text by, I presume, the most distinguished scholars in the field of Tolkien studies.

Unfinished Tales of Numenor and Middle Earth was one of the first of these posthumous works. I remember, long ago, quite enjoying this miscellany. I enjoyed how they fleshed out Tolkien's already astonishingly elaborate secondary reality. I thought Unfinished Tales struck a decent balance between the highfalutin and the homely: saga-like quests of ancient dragon-slaying heroes juxtaposed with intimate scenes of the Fellowship, reflecting in the aftermath on their adventures of the War of the Ring, and the like. The book kept me happily occupied for many cozy hours of fireside reading during a Christmas break from high school in the late 80's.

I remember vaguely resolving to read Tolkien's entire posthumous canon someday. But as my teens turned into my twenties, I had to admit to myself that, no, I never would. Unfinished Tales is as far as I ever got into Tolkien's postmortem publications. I just didn't care that much. I've even grown ambivalent about the very existence of Tolkien's massive posthumous bibliography. If millions of people want to obsess over the minutiae of Middle Earth, what's it to me? On the other hand, it all feels like overkill, at best, and at worst a cynical cash grab. My heart tells me Tolkien wouldn't have approved.
Profile Image for Liam.
283 reviews2,329 followers
June 23, 2017
Thoroughly enjoyed this, it was just so great to learn more about both old and new characters!! Tolkien's middle earth is so rich and beautiful and it was amazing to be able to delve even deeper into it!
Profile Image for Nicky.
4,138 reviews1,007 followers
October 8, 2012
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. Even more casual readers might like to dip into it for extra details about Gandalf, of course, but for the most part, if you didn't get into The Silmarillion, then don't bother with this.

But if you've ever thought, if only Tolkien could've lived forever -- or at least much longer -- so that we could know more about Middle-earth, then yes, give it a try.

Now if Christopher Tolkien would just let go of J.R.R.'s Arthurian poem, I'd be very grateful...
Profile Image for Sauerkirsche.
368 reviews61 followers
March 1, 2021
Tolkiens Mythologie ist und bleibt einzigartig und unerreicht. Dieses Buch bietet ein wundervolle Ergänzung zum Silmarillion. Einige Geschichten werden hier noch ausführlicher erzählt, manche kommen auch gar nicht im Silmarillion vor. Allerdings handelt es sich hier um keine fortlaufende Geschichtensammlung. Die Erzählungen sind durch C. Tolkiens Kommentare ergänzt, da es von jeder mehrere Fassungen gibt, die J.R.R. Tolkien teilweise auf lose Blätter gekritzelt hatte. Ich habe einen Eindruck davon bekommen, welche Mammutaufgabe es für den Sohn gewesen sein muss, diese Aufschriebe in eine sinnvolle Reihenfolge zu bringen und außerdem auch die "gültige" Version herauszusuchen.
Für HDR-Nerds unverzichtbar, erfährt man hier doch genaueres über die Beweggründe Gandalfs die Zwerge auf die Fahrt zum Erebor zu schicken, außerdem unterschiedliche Fassungen zu Celeborn und Galadriel oder über die Herkunft der Istari.
Profile Image for Mary.
92 reviews29 followers
October 10, 2019
Review to come on this... and man oh man, and boy oh boy is it going to be mixed.

Well. Hum. Hmm..

I am wavering with this book. It is important, first, to note that this book fills in certain gaps by including more tales that are featured within the Silmarillion.

These unfinished tales include stories from the first second and third age of middle earth. It is imperative that anyone who reads this FIRST reads the Silmarillion, and before that have read the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings.

Now having gotten this all off my chest.

I absolutely loved the story of the fall of Gondolin. With tuor and meeting the ocean god and meeting the messenger and going to the gates of Gondolin and all the 7 gates, etc etc.

But then, the stories of the Childen of Hurin stressed me out. When you read the almost entire story featured within the Silmarillion, you, at that time, become shocked and astonished and perplexed and probably traumatized but that is that. Because the Silmarillion is a history of Middle Earth etc. etc going into order.

But darn. I have to go through AALLL that trauma again!? I mean Tolkien. This story really is whack! Especially since the reader KNOWS what is going to happen, from previous knowledge and from just reading it itself (dramatic irony), it is a horrendous experience. So spoiler here. I mean I already know that Turin marries his sister and she him without they even knowing because of the curse of morgorth which is really the evilly devised plan with that darn dragon.

Now. If that wasn't enough. The story of the mariners wife, was a mixed one for me as well.

You see the problem isn't Tolkiens writing style or anything as such. But its the darn content which is yet again, in this instance, is irritating.

I found in turns in taking the side of the mariners wife and then in turn the mariner. You have to read it to find out. But the short of the long is that he is the kings son of numenor, heir to the throne, loves the ocean and sea. Goes frequently. Falls in love. But girl knows that she has to either fight the sea who has hold of him or she will be lost. And guess who wins THAT one.


Then. You get to galadriel and celeborn and man. Now it's getting boring.

So the gist of the matter is this. This book is MUCH MUCH MORE denser than the Silmarillion.

I really enjoyed the Silmarillion. And did not put it down. But this one. This one distressed me considering especially the children of hurin story. I really found it overwhelming and what not

So. This book does indeed follow from the Silmarillion. So it is important to read after that book. But good luck to you all. Because this one was good in its way and yet. Oppressive, woeful and depressing in turns.

I am now finished with Tolkien until I meet him again God willing In the fall of Gondolin. And thats it for me. Because, .... I THINK I have had enough now.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Ellen.
269 reviews3 followers
April 2, 2018
I can't believe I've never read this before! I would recommend this to anyone who's read the Silmarillion and is interested in more history of Middle-Earth. I say the Silmarillion because there's a lot of assumptions that the reader is familiar with the Valar, the Blessed Realm, and the general events of the First Age. You don't need to remember the details, but at least the basic narrative. Alternatively, if you just want more info on events of the Third Age, which is when the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit take place, you could skip the first two sections and just read the third and I don't think you'd feel lost.

This book is divided into three sections. Each one covers an age in Middle-Earth. The First Age only has two stories, the first of which is definitely "unfinished." It's about Tuor, an Elf-friend (and grandfather to Elrond, FYI) and the fall of Gondolin, the hidden Elvish kingdom. It's a great story that is told in brief in the Silmarillion. Here, it goes into much greater detail... but also stops before Tuor ever made it to Gondolin! Christopher Tolkien, J.R.R. Tolkien's son and editor of this book, only supplies what his father wrote. He adds footnotes and fragments that he can find, but it's definitely unfinished. As it was the first story in this book, I got worried that all of them would be like that: a structured narrative working to an exciting climax only to abruptly end. Luckily, that was only the case a few times.

The only other story from the First Age is the tale of the children of Hurin, also told more briefly in the Silmarillion, but also recently it received its own standalone book treatment, so it hardly belongs in here. However, Christopher Tolkien offers lots of versions of different parts of the text, so you really learn a lot about the evolution of the story, which is focused on Turin (Tuor's cousin!) and his doom. It's a sad story.

The second section is about the Second Age and focuses on Numenor, the island where come the Kings of Gondor and the Dunedain. The main story also ends somewhat abruptly and is sad in nature, but again, Christopher Tolkien outlines how it may have ended.

There's also a lot of contradictory writings about Galadriel and Celeborn, and it seems Tolkien never made up his mind on what their history definitively was.

The Third Age has a lot of interesting stories, including the history or Rohan and their friendship with Gondor, details of battles only briefly mentioned in the Lord of the Rings, the powers of the Nazgul, the five wizards and their origins, details about the palantirs, and more. These felt more complete, maybe because they weren't plot driven, but just interesting info.

Loved it and will reread it.
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