The Letters of J.R.R.Tolkien : a Selection, Paperback
5 out of 5 (1 rating)


A comprehensive collection of letters spanning the adult life (1914-1973) of one of the world's most famous storytellers. 'It is not possible even at great length to "pot" The Lord of the Rings in a paragraph or two.

It was begun in 1936, and every part has been written many times...the labour has been colossal; and it must stand or fall, practically as it is.' J.R.R.

Tolkien was one of the most prolific letter writers of this century.

Over the years he wrote to his publishers, his family, to friends (including C.S.

Lewis, W.H. Auden and Naomi Mitchison) and to fans of his books.

The letters present a fascinating and highly detailed portrait of the man in many of his aspects: as storyteller, scholar, Catholic, parent and observer of the world around him.

They also shed much light on his creative genius and grand design for the creation of a whole new world - Middle-earth. This collection will appeal not only to the legions of Tolkien fans, but will entertain anyone who appreciates the art of letter-writing, of which Tolkien was a master. 'I am nearly always written to as Tolkein (not by you): I do not know why, since it is pronounced by me always -keen.'


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 480 pages, Index
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Biography: general
  • ISBN: 9780261102651



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Reading Tolkien's letters has to be fascinating for anyone interested in the man and/or his works. He reflects on what he wrote, gives advice to his sons, reports on the progress of his work, and sends irritated letters to Germans who have asked if he's of Jewish descent. It's a pretty exhaustive collection, with an index and little bits of context to go with each letter. Worth reading!