Richard Adams on THE SILMARILLION
Tolkien and Fantasy
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2M ago
The fact that Richard Adams, author of Watership Down, was one of the first reviewers of The Silmarillion on its publication in 1977, seems to have long escaped Tolkienists, and Tolkien bibliographers. The review is not cited in Richard C. West's impressive Tolkien Criticism: An Annotated Checklist (revised edition 1981), nor in Judith A. Johnson's J.R.R. Tolkien: Six Decades of Criticism (1986 ..read more
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Roald Dahl's 1973 Revisions to CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
Tolkien and Fantasy
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3M ago
The 1964 & 1973 Knopf dwThe recent hullabaloo over posthumously revising classic texts to conform to contemporary ideologies reminded me that I have long wanted to look into the changes Roald Dahl himself made in 1973 to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Here are the results of my study. [A companion piece on the first edition points of the Knopf edition can be found here.]  Charlie and ..read more
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R.I.P. Richard Mathews (1944-2024)
Tolkien and Fantasy
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3M ago
I just googled to see if my old friend Richard Mathews was still the Director of the University of Tampa Press, only to find out that he died last month. I met him at the 1987 Mythcon in Milwaukee, where we both appeared on a panel on David Lindsay. We found we had many common interests. Richard had published, with Borgo Press, a short book on Tolkien, Lightning from a Clear Sky (1978), and other ..read more
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Tolkien on Max Beerbohm
Tolkien and Fantasy
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4M ago
 Oscar Wilde by MaxThe New York Public Library recently hosted an exhibition on Max Beerbohm: The Price of Celebrity from October 20, 2023--January 28, 2024. A small book (around one hundred pages), with text by Margaret D. Stetz, with Mark Samuels Lasner, described many of the items showcased in the exhibition. Max Beerbohm (1872-1956) is perhaps best remembered as a caricaturist (he ..read more
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Fairy-tale Versions of Beowulf
Tolkien and Fantasy
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5M ago
In Tolkien On Fairy-Stories (2008), Verlyn Flieger and I noted that in Tolkien's research notes for his famous lecture/essay, Tolkien queried himself twice about whether on not Andrew Lang had included a retold Beowulf in any of his Fairy Books--the first time briefly, but in the second instance with a bit of commentary: A Fairy Story. But when retold (seldom) it is not retold as such. For ..read more
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Off-trail Hobbit Illustrations: Chris Riddell Part Two
Tolkien and Fantasy
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6M ago
When I made my previous post, I did not know that Chris Riddell had earlier illustrated Tolkien in a similar anthology of illustrated extracts. Thanks to Trotter for pointing this volume out to me. And the earlier book turns out to be a far more interesting book than the one I had known about, for a number of reasons. The Puffin Treasury of Children's Stories was published in 1996. No editor ..read more
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Off-trail Hobbit Illustrations: Chris Riddell
Tolkien and Fantasy
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7M ago
The Puffin Twentieth-Century Collection of Stories (1999), edited by Judith Elkin, is a collections of extracts from 23 children's books, each extract illustrated by a different artist, in varying modes. The Tolkien extract is from the Troll chapter of The Hobbit, and its illustrations are by Chris Riddell. The full-page illustration is towards the end of the extract, and depicts Gandalf. Here ..read more
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Off-trail Hobbit Illustrations: Michael Hague
Tolkien and Fantasy
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7M ago
Michael Hague illustrated the 1984 edition of The Hobbit, but that wasn't the only time he illustrated scenes from The Hobbit.  Also in 1984, the Easton Press published a special edition of The Hobbit with a frontispiece by Hague that is not included in any other edition of the book. I show the title page and frontispiece here:  Click to enlargeOne aspect of this illustration is incongruous with ..read more
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Tolkien Studies: An Annual Scholarly Review: Its Origins and Evolutions
Tolkien and Fantasy
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8M ago
So David Bratman of Tolkien Studies just posted here that Verlyn Flieger is retiring from the journal after 22 years. I wondered: has it really been that long since Mike Drout and I first discussed the idea, and asked Verlyn to join us in founding the journal?  Yes, it has indeed been 22 years.  I dug into my old emails with Mike. Here is the seed of the whole operation.I emailed Mike in the wee ..read more
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Tolkien and A.E. Coppard
Tolkien and Fantasy
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10M ago
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