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Die Kinder Húrins by John R. R. Tolkien

Die Kinder Húrins (original 2007; edition 2007)

by John R. R. Tolkien, Alan Lee (Illustrator), Hans J. Schütz (Übersetzer), Helmut W. Pesch (Übersetzer)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
6,442109597 (3.85)1 / 116
Title:Die Kinder Húrins
Authors:John R. R. Tolkien
Other authors:Alan Lee (Illustrator), Hans J. Schütz (Übersetzer), Helmut W. Pesch (Übersetzer)
Info:Klett-Cotta Verlag (2007), Ausgabe: 6. Auflage, Gebundene Ausgabe, 334 Seiten
Collections:Phantastische Literatur, Gelesen (Siljan), Siljans Bibliothek
Tags:Tolkien, Arda, als Hörbuch gehört

Work details

The Children of Húrin by J. R. R. Tolkien (2007)

  1. 80
    The Silmarillion by J. R. R. Tolkien (Jitsusama)
    Jitsusama: The Silmarillion is an essential book to better understand the occurrences surrounding the Children of Hurin. It also contains a slightly shorter version of the tale.
  2. 21
    The Whale Kingdom Quest by Ming-Wei (Rossi21)
    Rossi21: Good science fiction book, well worth a read

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English (100)  Spanish (3)  French (2)  Dutch (2)  Finnish (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (109)
Showing 1-5 of 100 (next | show all)
You've got to admire Christopher Tolkien. His stewardship of his father's work has clearly been a labour of love, a deeply serious, scholarly task requiring commitment and devotion that stands in stark contrast to the crass commercialisation that, by default, accompanies the films. So when he produces a new posthumous book as by JRR Tolkien, you have to treat accusations of cashing in with skepticism.

The Children Of Hurin is definitely not new. Versions of the story appear in The Silmarillon and Unfinished Tales. It is one of the core myths of Tolkien's Elder Days, so the story will be familiar to many. However, what we have here is a carefully collated, edited, coherent, self-contained continuous narrative, and it is something of a revelation. It's a marvelous read and a great story and a thrilling journey through Beleriand. The archaic style, deliberately employed by Tolkien to give a sense of distance and deep time, may be off-putting to some readers, but it very quickly grows on you, creating a vivid, powerful sense of momentum and an epic sense of scale, with every emotion, even the pettier, meaner ones, painted in strong primary colours and the titanic forces at war and the overwhelming sense of impending doom and inescapable tragedy imbuing the whole thing with that aching sense of sadness and lovely things passing that is unique to Tolkien.

The illustrations by Alan Lee are wonderful and atmospheric. There is a useful fold-out map at the back to keep the reader oriented. Christopher Tolkien restricts his notes and comments to the introduction and the appendices, and they can be safely skipped if one is so inclined. A handsome little book well worth getting, and far from leaving me cyincal about the exploitation of Tolkien's work, it leaves me wishing for further volumes giving, for example, stories such as The Tale Of Beren And Luthien and The Fall Of Gondolin similar treatment. ( )
  Nigel_Quinlan | Oct 21, 2015 |
This is a great read. The stories give details of history that is only hinted at in The Lord of the Rings stories. You find out more details of these stories. My copy included drawings and pictures. Sometimes these can be too "cartoony" and take away from a story. However, these in my copy showed visually the details and were very well places. I loved having the sketch looking ones as well as the color ones too. The final note is that I had a map that is noted to be what Tolkien used for writing this world. Seeing it also added to it.

I felt like I was reading an old fairytale book with elves, dragons, and far away kingdoms. It's an amazing tale and perfect for those who especially fell in love with his other works. ( )
  jessica_reads | Mar 24, 2015 |
This is a great read. The stories give details of history that is only hinted at in The Lord of the Rings stories. You find out more details of these stories. My copy included drawings and pictures. Sometimes these can be too "cartoony" and take away from a story. However, these in my copy showed visually the details and were very well places. I loved having the sketch looking ones as well as the color ones too. The final note is that I had a map that is noted to be what Tolkien used for writing this world. Seeing it also added to it.

I felt like I was reading an old fairytale book with elves, dragons, and far away kingdoms. It's an amazing tale and perfect for those who especially fell in love with his other works. ( )
  jesssika | Sep 9, 2014 |
Of all the mythology of Middle Earth, this is probably the darkest tale. It’s essentially a tale of original sin, with Tolkien’s version of Satan rewarding Húrin’s defiance with imprisonment and a curse on his family which is enacted whilst all he can do is watch. The dark side might lose a few bodies and a battle or two but overall win the day. This isn’t even about some capriciousness of the gods, it’s about the cost of doing the right thing.

Where Tolkien excels is in how Túrin almost always acts with the best of intentions but how his actions turn to darkness. As the author’s aiming for the breadth and sweep of European myth the unlikely coincidences of the story can be put down to chance being corrupted and the curse working its dark magic. Essentially we’re told up front that this will be a depressing read, but the hope that the characters can defy their decreed fate leaves a spark of hope to the end. It’s no spoiler to say that that hope goes unrewarded, with the last few scenes being as heartbreaking as Tolkien gets. Túrin does achieve some minor victories, but the misery he often unwittingly spreads tends to outweigh that. Powerfully written stuff, to the point you wouldn’t know it had to be reconstructed by the author’s son. It won’t convert those who find Tolkien forbidding and off-putting, but for those of us who grew up reading him and have never quite lost the taste for his works, it’s thrilling stuff and arguably a better place to start than The Silmarillion (a more coherent story), The Hobbit (more depth and breadth) or the weightiness of his most famous trilogy. ( )
1 vote JonArnold | Aug 14, 2014 |
It's EPIC so far, and I've read up to page 53 in one day!
  CallMeChristina | Mar 23, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 100 (next | show all)
Inspired by the Norse tale of Sigurd and Fafnir, Tolkien first wrote a story about a dragon in 1899, at the age of 7. At school he discovered the Kalevala, a Finnish epic poem, and by 1914 was trying to turn the tale of Kullervo into “a short story somewhat on the lines of Morris’s romances”. By 1919 he had combined these elements in what became the tale of Túrin Turambar.

The book is beautiful, but other than the atmospheric illustrations by Alan Lee, and a discussion of the editorial process, much of what lies between the covers was actually published in either The Silmarillion (1977) or Unfinished Tales (1980). Yet this new, whole version serves a valuable purpose. In The Children of Húrin we could at last have the successor to The Lord of the Rings that was so earnestly and hopelessly sought by Tolkien’s publishers in the late 1950s.

» Add other authors (27 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Tolkien, J. R. R.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tolkien, ChristopherEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ciuferri, CaterinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
De Turris, GianfrancoContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Juva, KerstiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lee, AlanIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Martin, AliceTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pekkanen, PanuTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pesch, Helmut W.secondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Principe, QuirinoContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schütz, Hans J.secondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0618894640, Hardcover)

The first complete book by J.R.R. Tolkien in three decades--since the publication of The Silmarillion in 1977--The Children of Húrin reunites fans of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings with Elves and Men, dragons and Dwarves, Eagles and Orcs. Presented for the first time as a complete, standalone story, this stirring narrative will appeal to casual fans and expert readers alike, returning them to the rich landscape and characters unique to Tolkien.

Adam Tolkien on The Children of Húrin

How did a lifetime of stories become The Children of Húrin? In an essay on the making of the book, Adam Tolkien, grandson of J.R.R. Tolkien (and French translator of his History of Middle-earth), explains that the Húrin legends made up the third "Great Tale" of his grandfather's Middle-earth writing, and he describes how his father, Christopher Tolkien, painstakingly collected the pieces of the legend into a complete story told only in the words of J.R.R. Tolkien. "For anyone who has read The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings," he writes, The Children of Húrin "allows them to take a step back into a larger world, an ancient land of heroes and vagabonds, honour and jeopardy, hope and tragedy."

A Look Inside the Book

This first edition of The Children of Húrin is illustrated by Alan Lee, who was already well-known for his Tolkien illustrations in previous editions (see our Tolkien Store for more) as well as his classic collaboration with Brian Froud, Faeries, and his Kate Greenaway Medal-winning Black Ships Before Troy, before his Oscar-winning work as conceptual designer for Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings film trilogy brought him even greater acclaim. Here's a quick glimpse of two of Lee's interior illustrations for The Children of Húrin. (Click on each to see larger images.)

Questions for Alan Lee

We had the chance to ask Alan Lee a few questions about his illustrative collaboration with the world imagined by J.R.R. Tolkien:

Amazon.com: How much of a treat was it to get first crack at depicting entirely new characters rather than ones who had been interpreted many times before? Was there one who particularly captured your imagination?

Lee: Although it was a great honor to illustrate The Children of Húrin, the characters and the main elements of the story line are familiar to those who have read The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales, and these narratives have inspired quite a few illustrators. Ted Nasmith has illustrated The Silmarillion and touched on some of the same characters and landscapes. This was the first time that I ventured into the First Age; while working on The Lord of the Rings books and films--and The Hobbit--I've had to refer back to events in Middle-earth history but not really depict them.

I'm drawn to characters who bear similarities to the protagonists in myths and legends; these correspondences add layers and shades of meaning, and most of the characters in this story have those archetypal qualities. However, I prefer not to get too close to the characters because the author is delineating them much more carefully than I can, and I'm wary of interfering with the pictures that the text is creating in the reader's mind.

Amazon.com: The Húrin story has been described as darker than some of Tolkien's other work. What mood did you try to set with your illustrations?

Lee: It is a tragic story, but the darkness is offset by the light and beauty of Tolkien's elegiac writing. In the illustrations I tried to show some of the fragile beauty of the landscapes and create an atmosphere that would enhance the sense of foreboding and impending loss. I try to get the setting to tell its part in the story, as evidence of what happened there in the past and as a hint at what is going to occur. My usual scarred and broken trees came in handy.

Amazon.com: You were a conceptual designer (and won an Oscar) for Peter Jackson's film trilogy of The Lord of the Rings, which I think we can safely say had a bit of success. How does designing for the screen compare to designing for the page?

Lee: They both have their share of joys and frustrations. It was great to be part of a huge film collaboration and play a small part in something quite magical and monumental; I will always treasure that experience. Film is attractive because I enjoy sketching and coming up with ideas more than producing highly finished artwork, and it's great having several hundred other people lending a hand! But books--as long as they don't get moldy from being left in an empty studio for six years--have their own special quality. I hope that I can continue doing both.

Amazon.com: Of all fiction genres, fantasy seems to have the strongest tradition of illustration. Why do you think that is? Who are some of your favorite illustrators?

Lee: A lot of excellent illustrators are working at the moment--especially in fantasy and children's books. It is exciting also to see graphic artists such as Dave McKean, in his film Mirrormask, moving between different media. I also greatly admire the more traditional work of Gennady Spirin and Roberto Innocenti. Kinuko Craft, John Jude Palencar, John Howe, Charles Vess, Brian Froud ... I'll stop there, as the list would get too long. But--in a fit of pride and justified nepotism--I'll add my daughter, Virginia Lee, to the list. Her first illustrated children's book, The Frog Bride [coming out in the U.K. in September], will be lovely.

More Tolkien Favorites

Visit our J.R.R. Tolkien Store for a complete selection of Tolkien classics, including deluxe editions, young readers' editions, and more.

The Lord of the Rings
50th Anniversary Edition
The Hobbit
Collector's Edition
The Atlas of Middle Earth

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:19 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

A fantasy adventure saga set in the early days of Middle-Earth features humans and elves, dwarves and dragons, orcs and dark sorcerers clashing in an epic battle between good and evil.

(summary from another edition)

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