Friday, 7 March 2014

Seven books about Tolkien I do NOT recommend


Looking through my bookshelves I have, over the years, bought several books about Tolkien which I consider to be a waste of money and the time spent reading them.

In order to save others (or, at least, those 'others' who share my tastes and preferences) from the same mistakes, I list here my NOT recommendations:

1. Tolkien: a biography by Michael White - NOT

2. Defending Middle Earth: Tolkien, myth and modernity by Patrick Curry - NOT

3. A look behind the Lord of the Rings by Lin Carter - NOT

4. There and back again in the footsteps of JRR Tolkien by Mathew Lyons - NOT

5. Tolkien and the Critics edited by ND Isaacs and RA Zimbardo - NOT

6. A Tolkien Compass edited by Jared Lobdell - NOT

7. Understanding Tolkien and the Lord of the Rings by William Ready - NOT (except that this one is so bad that it is almost enjoyable).



Philip Neal said...

Lin Carter deserves some credit for his cheap reprints of fantasy classics including ER Eddison and Lord Dunsany. His book was intended to promote that series and to direct Tolkien fans to the tradition. It is a superficial piece of work, but he knew some of Tolkien's sources including the Eddas.

Bruce Charlton said...

@PN - All true.

And so is this:

But I would not recommend actually *reading* it!

Samson J. said...

Um, I was hoping for a little bit on why not.

William Zeitler said...

So what are some books on Tolkien you would RECOMMEND?

Bruce Charlton said...

@WZ - Some