POEMS AND STORIES by J.R.R. Tolkien

POEMS AND STORIES

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A collection of pieces, 1949-75, that barely touches upon the Middle-Earth scenario for which Tolkien (1829-1973) is justly famous; overall, however, it renders a much more complete account of this scholar, poet, critic, and storyteller's talents. The charming, deceptively light poems of ""The Adventures of Tom Bambadil"" contain intriguing sidelights on Middle-Earth lore, while the dramatic poem ""The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth"" (""unavailable in any other edition,"" according to the publisher), complete with scholarly introduction, describes the aftermath of the Battle of Maldon, which occurred in the year 991. The essay ""On Fairy-Stories"" has won critical acclaim, as have the tales ""Farmer Giles of Ham"" and ""Smith of Wootton Major,"" as well as the story that most closely reflects Tolkien's personal philosophy (""Leaf by Niggle""). Some of these may be familiar, or available individually; still, this collection is a splendid accompaniment for existing fans, or an excellent introduction for newcomers.

Pub Date: March 16th, 1994
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin