LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Mrs Figg on Tue Jul 01, 2014 1:01 pm

Razz 


 Suspect  no geoducks. they are not weird they are plain disgusting

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by halfwise on Tue Jul 01, 2014 2:11 pm

Does that mean anything that looks like geoducks are disgusting?  Sad 

How about oysters? Are oysters okay?


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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Eldorion on Tue Jul 01, 2014 5:10 pm

I guess breaking down the finer details of Unfinished Tales can't compare to the joys of giggling at geoducks. Rolling Eyes Razz
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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by bungobaggins on Tue Jul 01, 2014 5:41 pm

I'm almost half way through A Game of Thrones so I don't really want to pick up any other books until I get caught up with A Song of Ice and Fire, and yeah I think I'd rather come on here and giggle at dumb stuff and oyster vaginas than dissect Tolkien. (No offense, professor.)

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Eldorion on Tue Jul 01, 2014 5:48 pm

I totally get what you mean; none of my reading/watching lately has been Tolkien related. But there seemed to be some interest on the previous page so I figured it was going to happen I'd want to be part of it.
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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Radaghast on Wed Sep 24, 2014 10:25 pm

I read this a few months back and the only part I could really get into was Part III, particularly "The Hunt for the Ring".

I actively disliked "Aldarion and Erendis: The Mariner's Wife".

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Eldorion on Thu Sep 25, 2014 2:48 am



I liked Aldarion and Erendis, but it's utterly unlike any of Tolkien's published works. A mature (if quite, shall we say, formal) depiction of a love story and the resultant relationship. It's more of a psychological character piece than anything else. Aldarion plays an important part in the overall history of Middle-earth, but this is only alluded to in the story. Not something you read to put a smile on your face either. I'll admit that a big part of its appeal for me was the chance to get a glimpse at Numenorean society from the inside, but I did find the characters to be interesting as well. But everything feels a little cold and distant, which might have been deliberate, but I'm not a huge fan.

My favorite parts of UT are the historical parts, especially Cirion and Eorl. As a lorehead I ate that stuff up. Giant battles, movements of peoples, the tomb of Elendil! That was like my favorite Tolkien thing ever when I was 12 and had been re-reading the LOTR Appendices for years already. The Battles of the Fords of Isen was a favorite when I was experimenting with role-play because I was trying to do Rohan characters. And I swear to God, I genuinely enjoyed and found to be interesting the Appendix on Numenorean linear measures at the end of The Disaster of the Gladden Fields.

It's not a book that you read unless you're really invested (Tolkien himself would say over-invested) in the gritty pseudo-historical details though. Laughing
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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Thu Sep 25, 2014 9:27 am

I really like The Battles of the Fords bit, as it reads like a history book of an actual battle pieced together by historians after the event from the available evidence- a wonderfully executed conceit.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Radaghast on Thu Sep 25, 2014 9:20 pm

"Aldarion and Erendis" was not without its value. I guess I should be more specific about what I disliked about it and say that Aldarion was clearly in the wrong and became more unlikeable as the story progressed. His character really grated on me.

"The Hunt for the Ring" came out of left field for me: writing from the Ringwraiths' (or any villain's) perspective is something I'd never have thought Tolkien to have written. I ate it up with a spoon. And I kind of found myself wishing more of this was in LotR.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Eldorion on Fri Sep 26, 2014 12:06 am

Oh yeah, he definitely turns into an unlikable prick. But I thought the story did a good job of developing his character and showing how it happened, so I enjoyed it nonetheless.

The Hunt for the Ring is another really good chapter, I agree. Thumbs Up I think it was used (technically illegally) by the BBC radio adaptation of LOTR back in the '80s. Petty can probably say for sure. It's neat though, especially since the only glimpses we have of the other side in the book itself are the orcs who captured Merry and Pippin and Shagrat and Gorbag in ROTK.
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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Sep 26, 2014 2:08 am

Yeah the BBC version has a few bits from UT snuck in there.
It puts Gandalfs escape from Orthanc, as recounted at the Coucnil of Erond into its place chronologically in the telling, and after Gandalf goes to Rohan for a horse and takes Shadowfax, it includes one of the versions from UT of the account of the Riders questioning Saruman at the gates of Isengard and then finding Wormtongue on his way to report about Gandalf, and its from him the Riders learn that Gandalf has gone to the 'land of the halflings' and where it is.

I actually dont like those bits myself n the adaptation, not that they are done badly, they are well enough adapted, its just I feel the Black Riders are better if when you first encounter them its as the hobbits do, and when they are largely a weird and scary unknown. Knowing who they are and where they come from and having already heard them having lengthy conversations with people reduces their menace in my view rather than increases it.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Radaghast on Fri Sep 26, 2014 5:50 am

Eldorion wrote:The Hunt for the Ring is another really good chapter, I agree. Thumbs Up I think it was used (technically illegally) by the BBC radio adaptation of LOTR back in the '80s.  Petty can probably say for sure.  It's neat though, especially since the only glimpses we have of the other side in the book itself are the orcs who captured Merry and Pippin and Shagrat and Gorbag in ROTK.
Oh, right, that is written from the villains' POV as well; plus the orcs who fight each other in Minas Morgul.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Radaghast on Fri Sep 26, 2014 5:50 am

Pettytyrant101 wrote:I actually dont like those bits myself n the adaptation, not that they are done badly, they are well enough adapted, its just I feel the Black Riders are better if when you first encounter them its as the hobbits do, and when they are largely a weird and scary unknown. Knowing who they are and where they come from and having already heard them having lengthy conversations with people reduces their menace in my view rather than increases it.
True. Good point.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Sep 26, 2014 6:07 am

I have the same problem with PJ's version- the viewer knows far too much, way more than any of the main characters, even Gandalf does, before anything actually happens involving the main characters. It destroys the suspense, the mystery and the build up.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Bluebottle on Fri Sep 26, 2014 1:16 pm

I always rather liked the First and Second age parts. As it filled in a lot of blanks in the already commonly available released material.

The Tuor and Gondolin part I think is one of my favourites. Shame Tolkien never finished it.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by halfwise on Fri Sep 26, 2014 1:49 pm

Cirion and Eorl was my favorite bit from Unfinished Tales as well. I also liked the part about the Pukel men. The essay on Palantiri was fascinating.

All in all I think UT is the most satisfying Tolkien book outside of LoTR and the Hobbit. I want more.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Eldorion on Fri Sep 26, 2014 3:05 pm

Oh yeah, Tuor and Gondolin was fantastic. It's all the more disappointing that it wasn't finished, because the only other substantial version of the Gondolin story we have is the original from The Book of Lost Tales, which is very different from what the legendarium became (although large chunks of it were incorporated into the version in the published Silmarillion out of necessity).

I agree that UT is one of the most satisfying books. I was initially very disappointed that The History of Middle-earth wasn't more like it, and that HoME had so much more background text/explanations. But that's a factor of the different goals of the two books, and also because so many of the fragments in HoME are much less finished than the ones in UT.
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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Bluebottle on Fri Sep 26, 2014 4:42 pm

Yeah. Shame is it cuts of just as things are getting really interesting too.

Always loved the cover art of UTs, which coincidentally is from that exact story.


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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Eldorion on Sat Sep 27, 2014 2:41 am

That is some really neat art. Smile My version of Unfinished Tales is the mass market paperback from Ballantine, with this art:



That's Tolkien in the portrait in the background, btw. Very Happy My personal favorite UT cover art is probably Amon Rudh (lair of Mim the Petty-dwarf from Narn i Hin Hurin).

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by bungobaggins on Sat Sep 27, 2014 2:43 am

That's my version of UT, too. Very Happy

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Radaghast on Sat Sep 27, 2014 2:50 am

Mine three.

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by azriel on Sat Sep 27, 2014 1:05 pm

[quote="Eldorion"]That is some really neat art. Smile My version of Unfinished Tales is the mass market paperback from Ballantine, with this art:





I love this cover ! havent seen it before ? That looks more Hobbity than ANYTHING peejers has come up with !

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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Eldorion on Sat Sep 27, 2014 4:30 pm

I'm not surprised you hadn't seen it before. As far as I know it's exclusive to the Ballantine edition, which is only published in America. It is pretty nice. Smile
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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Eldorion on Sat Sep 27, 2014 5:20 pm

I just checked my copy and the cover art is by Tony DiTerlizzi, who is better known as a children's book author and illustrator in his own right (he won the Caldecott, which is a very prestigious award for picture books).  I did a bit of Googling and he has an interesting article about the cover on his blog. Smile

http://diterlizzi.com/home/books-there-and-back-again/
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Re: LOTR/Unfinished Tales Readalong

Post by Bluebottle on Mon Sep 29, 2014 7:11 pm

Eldorion wrote:My personal favorite UT cover art is probably Amon Rudh (lair of Mim the Petty-dwarf from Narn i Hin Hurin).


Those are pretty great too. Nod

Think I still prefer the Ulmo one though, for it's dramatic nature. And, after all, that is the moment that lead to Morgoths downfall.

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