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The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien
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The Silmarillion (original 1977; edition 2001)

by J.R.R. Tolkien (Author), Christopher Tolkien (Editor)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
25,54119676 (3.85)1 / 404
Member:LaurBear90
Title:The Silmarillion
Authors:J.R.R. Tolkien (Author)
Other authors:Christopher Tolkien (Editor)
Info:Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (2001), Edition: Second, 384 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
Tags:Fantasy, Lord of the Rings

Work details

The Silmarillion by J. R. R. Tolkien (Author) (1977)

  1. 211
    The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien (guurtjesboekenkast, Percevan)
  2. 170
    The Children of Húrin 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.
  3. 80
    The Hobbit / The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien (PaulBerauer)
  4. 70
    The Poetic Edda by Anonymous (CGlanovsky)
    CGlanovsky: Most likely an inspiration to Tolkien. Many parallels.
  5. 70
    The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun by J. R. R. Tolkien (guurtjesboekenkast)
  6. 50
    The Book of Lost Tales, Part 2 by J. R. R. Tolkien (OscarWilde87)
  7. 50
    The Book of Lost Tales, Part 1 by J. R. R. Tolkien (OscarWilde87)
  8. 41
    Beren and Lúthien by J. R. R. Tolkien (Michael.Rimmer)
  9. 41
    The Fall of Gondolin by J. R. R. Tolkien (Michael.Rimmer)
  10. 41
    Shadow & Claw: The First Half of The Book of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe (Cecrow)
    Cecrow: Equally (arguably supremely) high-brow fantasy.
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    The Worm Ouroboros by E. R. Eddison (Sylak)
  12. 15
    The Rivan Codex: Ancient Texts of the Belgariad and the Malloreon by David Eddings (Ludi_Ling)
    Ludi_Ling: For those less interested in the narrative of epic fantasy fiction, and more in the mythology, history and construction of imaginary worlds, both books serve as interesting and instructive reads.
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English (175)  Spanish (6)  Italian (3)  Dutch (3)  French (3)  German (3)  Swedish (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (195)
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This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: The Silmarillion
Series: The Lord of the Rings Prequel
Author: J.R.R. Tolkien
Rating: 3 of 5 Stars
Genre: Fantasy History
Pages: 367
Format: Digital Edition

Synopsis:


A book that outlines, briefly, the world of Middle Earth from before its inception up until the conclusion of Return of the King.

Iluvatar made the Valar but one, Morgoth, decided to do his own thing. This set him in defiance of Iluvatar and against the other Valar. Iluvatar made the world and the Valar and Morgoth had their way with it. Iluvatar created the Elves and Morgoth tried to become king of the world. Iluvatar made Men and the rest of the Valar chained Morgoth forever. Sauron, one of Morgoth's most powerful underlyings, himself a lesser Valar, took up the cause of becoming King of the World in defiance of Iluvatar. He is destroyed by the last alliance of men, elves, dwarves and others and thus the history part of the book end.

There is another 60-70 pages of indexing where every name of every place and person mentioned is listed.

My Thoughts:

To be blunt, while I gave this 3stars, it was boring as all get out. It took me a bleeding week to power through this.

I gave it 3 stars because it is well written and gives the context for the story we know of as the Hobbit and then the trilogy named The Lord of the Rings. However, when I say it is well written, that is within the confines of it being a history book and nothing more.

I did not like this book. Being boring was its most egregious sin but I have to balance that statement with that this book was supposed to be this way. It is an oral history written down. If that kind of thing floats your boat, then dive on in and enjoy. Everyone else, don't bother.

I did not like this book because it was nothing but a chronicle of failure and despair. Great men and women (applying to all races here) rose up and were either broken, destroyed or backstabbed. When they did, rarely, succeed, we are then given a timeline of how their descendants descended into destruction. No hope from Tolkien. Everything turns bad.

I was hoping that the end of the world would be described, to show Iluvatar triumphing and restoring all but no such luck.

I read this back in highschool before I knew better. Now that I've read it as a mature adult, never again. I don't recommend this to the casual movie fan of the Lord of the Rings but only to diehard fans of Tolkien himself.

BORING

★★★☆☆ ( )
2 vote BookstoogeLT | Apr 15, 2019 |
The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien is the story of how the creation of Tolkien's world came to be.

It has been years since I have read this book, and it was such a delight to revisit Tolkien's world from the beginning of the First Age. It is exciting and sorrowful, and I loved spending time with all the characters and visiting the places they traveled. This is a great read for lovers of Tolkien's work. ( )
  feeroberts64 | Feb 5, 2019 |
While this is more a collection of stories and notes than a full novel, this just might be the definitive J. R. R. Tolkien work, as well as a very useful Tolkien reference. Found in this book we have the very creation of Middle-Earth by the gods and the stories of the gods themselves. The various kindreds of the Elves appear, as well as the first Men. The old stories of the wise and powerful (and vengeful) Noldor are told in their war against Morkoth, Sauron's mighty patron. It also has a brief summary of the background of the Hobbit and a summary of LoTR.
The stories of the Silmarils, Beren and Luthien, the tale of the Numenoreans, all of these are must reads for any Tolkien fan, they are the bedrock on which his novels are based. Fantastic stuff. ( )
  Karlstar | Dec 11, 2018 |
It was good to get the background stories from the foundation of Middle Earth, but most of it read just like a history book... rather dry and slow reading. Not at all in the same style of The Hobbit or the Lord of the Rings trilogy. With that said, there were areas where it was almost a narrative, but the attempt was rather poorly pulled off. ( )
  snotbottom | Sep 19, 2018 |
I began reading this book originally in high school. At the time I was enjoying it, but I never focused quite enough to finish the entire thing. When I decided to try it again, I did so with my dear friend Meg. Together, we read from start to finish - and I have to say, reading it with a friend where we could discuss each section together as we went through it, heightened the experience together. It was a pleasant Tolkien study, and one where I learned a great deal about the world and Meg did, too.

[b: The Silmarillion|7332|The Silmarillion (Middle-Earth Universe)|J.R.R. Tolkien|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1336502583s/7332.jpg|4733799] is a prequel to the events of [b: Lord of the Rings|33|The Lord of the Rings (The Lord of the Rings, #1-3)|J.R.R. Tolkien|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1411114164s/33.jpg|3462456] and [b: The Hobbit|5907|The Hobbit|J.R.R. Tolkien|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1372847500s/5907.jpg|1540236]. It is the story of how the elves came to occupy Middle Earth, and eventually leave it. It is the elves mythos, which slowly begins to entwine with the dwarves and the men. It is how the Ring came to be made, and what came before. Familiar characters come and go, and the world itself changes over the course of the stories.

This is a book I will want to read again and again, along with the rest of Tolkien's universe. I can't wait to delve in more. ( )
  Lepophagus | Jun 14, 2018 |
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At its best Tolkien's posthumous revelation of his private mythology is majestic, a work held so long and so power fully in the writer's imagination that it overwhelms the reader. Like Tolkien's other books, The Silmarillion presents a doomed but heroic view of creation that may be one of the reasons why a generation growing up on the thin gruel of television drama, and the beardless cynicism of Mad magazine, first found J.R.R. Tolkien so rich and wonderful.
added by Shortride | editTime, Timothy Foote (Oct 24, 1977)
 
If "The Hobbit" is a lesser work that the Ring trilogy because it lacks the trilogy's high seriousness, the collection that makes up "The Silmarillion" stands below the trilogy because much of it contains only high seriousness; that is, here Tolkien cares much more about the meaning and coherence of his myth than he does about these glories of the trilogy: rich characterization, imagistic brilliance, powerfully imagined and detailed sense of place, and thrilling adventure. Not that these qualities are entirely lacking here.
 

» Add other authors (20 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Tolkien, J. R. R.Authorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kay, GuyEditorial assistantsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tolkien, ChristopherEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Adlerberth, RolandTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Agøy, Nils IvarTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Domènech, LuisTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dringenberg, MikeCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Howe, JohnCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Juva, KerstiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Krege, WolfgangTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Masera, RubénTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nasmith, TedIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pekkanen, PanuTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Respinti, MarcoEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Saba Sardi, FrancescoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schuchart, MaxTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Shaw, MartinNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sweet, Darrell K.Cover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
Dedication
First words
The Silmarillion, now published four years after the death of its author, is an account of the Elder Days, or the First Age of the World.
There was Eru, the One, who in Arda is called Ilúvatar; and he made first the Ainur, the Holy Ones, that were the offspring of his thought, and they were with him before aught else was made.
Eru var, den Ene, i Arda kaldet Ilúvatar.
Quotations
"And thou, Melkor, shalt see that no theme may be played that hath not its utternmost source in me, nor can any alter the music in my despite. For he that attempteth this shall prove but mine instrument in the devising of things more wonderful, which he himself hath not imagined."
Among the tales of sorrow and of ruin that come 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 life that endures.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This LT Work is for The Silmarillion, a posthumous publication of J.R.R. Tolkien's over-arching work on Middle-Earth, which includes episodes from its creation, through the First Age, and to the end of the Third Age. The Silmarillion is neither part of nor prequel to Tolkien's monumental The Lord of the Rings, which (together with The Hobbit; or, There and Back Again) tells in detail of events leading to the end of the Third Age. Please do not combine The Silmarillion with The Lord of the Rings, with any part(s) thereof, with any other Tolkien work, or with any separate part of a multi-volume edition of the complete Work. Thank you.
Publisher's editors
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Book description
A number-one New York Times bestseller when it was originally published, "The Silmarillion" is the core of J.R.R. Tolkien's imaginative writing [...] Tolkien considered "The Silmarillion" his most important work, and, though it was published last and posthumously, this great collection of tales and legends clearly sets the stage for all his other writing. 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 Feanor, most gifted of the Elves. Within them was imprisoned the Light of the Two Trees of Valinor before the Trees themselves were destroyed by Morgoth, the first Dark Lord. Thereafter, the unsullied Light of Valinor lived on only in the Silmarils, but they were seized by Morgoth and set in his crown, which was guarded in the impenetrable fortress of Angband in the north of Middle-earth. "The Silmarillion" is the history of the rebellion of Feanor and his kindred against their gods, their exile from Valinor and return to Middle-earth, and their war, hopeless despite all their heroism, against the great Enemy.
Haiku summary
The bad Elves all die
Which is why all Elves are good
In the later books.
(hillaryrose7)

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0618391118, Hardcover)

The Silmarillion is J.R.R. Tolkien's tragic, operatic history of the First Age of Middle-Earth, essential background material for serious readers of the classic Lord of the Rings saga. Tolkien's work sets the standard for fantasy, and this audio version of the "Bible of Middle-Earth" does The Silmarillion justice. Martin Shaw's reading is grave and resonant, conveying all the powerful events and emotions that shaped elven and human history long before Bilbo, Frodo, Gandalf and all the rest embarked on their quests. Beginning with the Music of the Ainur, The Silmarillion tells a tale of the Elder Days, when Elves and Men became estranged by the Dark Lord Morgoth's lust for the Silmarils, pure and powerful magic jewels. Even the love between a human warrior and the daughter of the Elven king cannot defeat Morgoth, but the War of Wrath finally brings down the Dark Lord. Peace reigns until the evil Sauron recovers the Rings of Power and sets the stage for the events told in the Lord of the Rings. This is epic fantasy at its finest, thrillingly read and gloriously unabridged. (Running time: 14 hours, 6 CDs)

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:47 -0400)

(see all 10 descriptions)

A new edition of Tolkien's collection of tales and legends chronicling the world's beginnings and the happenings of the First Age focuses on the theft of the Simarils--the three jewels crafted by F?eanor--by Morgoth, first Dark Lord of Middle-earth, and has been revised and expanded to encompass forty-eight color paintings.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 14 descriptions

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