Tuesday, April 17, 2007

A New Tolkien Book: The Children of Hurin

Today, I got my (early) birthday present...The Children of Hurin. Ever since J.R.R. Tolkien's death in 1973, his son, Christopher, has done a remarkable job editing and publishing his father's unfinished (or better said, unpublished) writings. The earliest versions of The Children of Hurin go back about 90 years, to the end of WWI, when Tolkien began writing his most beloved epic, much of which was published posthumously as The Silmarillion. Although a portion of the tale was told in The Silmarillion, this new book is the most complete, readable version. I can't wait to dig into this story, and the timing couldn't be any better because I'm currently reading John Garth's biography, Tolkien and the Great War.


corey thomas said...

don't kill me... i haven't read any of Tolkien's works. i've watched the LOTR's trilogy but that's it.

Josh said...

Did you really just publicly admit to this?! You're missing out. Tolkien taught me to appreciate Biblical Theology and was instrumental in rescuing me from dispensationalism! Back in seminary, Heidi and I were reading through the trilogy (aloud, together) and I became convicted that I was captivated by the intricacy of the plot and how the tale of Frodo and Sam tied together with the millenia old stories that form the backdrop of the LOTR. It was then that the Spirit of God convicted and convinced me that unity and powerful drama of Tolkien's story was nothing compared to the unity and drama of God's Redemption Story. I posted on this a while ago ("We're in the Same Story Still.")

That said...you should read Tolkien.

Samuel said...

I hope you like the book. I saw a review in Entertainment Weekly - didn't sound so positive. Let me know if they're wrong (http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,20035310,00.html).

On a different note, I remember you liking Robert Webber's books on worship. Did you hear of his passing? (http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2007/aprilweb-only/118-12.0.html).


Josh said...

Good to hear from you! Are you really going to be swayed by Entertainment Weekly's opinion of Tolkien? It's quite obvious that the reviewer doesnt' get the Silmarillion so naturally he's not going to appreciate the children of Hurin. Read the comments beyond Jeff's article for a better review. Mine is still in the works.

Yes, I did hear about Robert Webber. The church has lost a godly man who has impacted so many communities through his writing and teaching on gathered worship.