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Tolkien's World:
Paintings of Middle-Earth

by J. R. R. Tolkien

ISBN 0261103075 / 9780261103078 / 0-261-10307-5
Publisher Harpercollins
Language English
Edition Softcover
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Book summary

The fantastical world of J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-earth is a land of rugged valleys and strange gothic forests inhabited by wizards and goblins. This world comes to life within the vast vaults of our imagination--and it may unnerve devotees of The Hobbit, Silmarillion, and The Lord of the Rings to physically encounter this world in paint and paper. Can the full evilness of Smaug, that demon of jaws and fire, ever be reproduced in a picture? Thankfully and reassuringly, Tolkien's World does not denigrate our very personal conceptions of this place in any way. An array of talented artists conjure up brilliant images on canvas, inspired by specific passages from the texts. Alan Lee's style is whimsical and enticing--his landscapes of Mount Doom and Tol Brandir are enveloped in a foggy veil, the elf lady Galadriel glows in an strange light standing "tall and pale." In contrast, John Howe's works are bold and dramatic, reflecting terrifying encounters with trolls, dragons, and creatures of "sting and of claws." These and other fabled paintings only add to our dreams of Middle-earth. --Naomi Gesinger [via]