Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

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Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by malickfan on Mon May 30, 2016 2:37 pm

I'm currently re-reading LOTR for the first time in several years, although I don't plan on throwing away my current copy of the book (I'll probably keep it as a reference/quick read copy) :

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lord-Rings-Based-Anniversary-Single/dp/0261103253/

The paper is beginning to fade, the spine is broken/bent in a couple of places and some of the pages are a little stained, in short it's beginning to look rather worn and torn, it gives me an excuse to upgrade to a hardback edition (something I've been planning on doing for a long time), soI was wandering if anyone had any recommendations?

I'm currently torn between these two:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lord-Rings-50th-Anniversary/dp/0618517650

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lord-Rings-J-R-Tolkien/dp/0007525540/


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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Radaghast on Mon May 30, 2016 4:50 pm

I have the 50th anniversary edition myself. Pretty fetching volume, if you ask me. That didn't prevent me from spilling something on it, though... Mad

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Eldorion on Mon May 30, 2016 5:05 pm

The 50th Anniversary Collector's Edition is/was the best version of LOTR ever printed ... but the Alan Lee illustrations from the Tolkien centenary edition are also phenomenal. Fortunately they combined the best parts of both for the 60th anniversary edition (the last link you posted) so I would recommend going with that one.

EDIT: actually I'm unsure if the 60th ann. ed. includes the Book of Mazarbul facsimile pages from the 50th, but I'd honestly probably choose the Lee illustrations over those.
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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by malickfan on Mon May 30, 2016 5:24 pm

Eldorion wrote:The 50th Anniversary Collector's Edition is/was the best version of LOTR ever printed ... but the Alan Lee illustrations from the Tolkien centenary edition are also phenomenal. Fortunately they combined the best parts of both for the 60th anniversary edition (the last link you posted) so I would recommend going with that one.

EDIT: actually I'm unsure if the 60th ann. ed. includes the Book of Mazarbul facsimile pages from the 50th, but I'd honestly probably choose the Lee illustrations over those.

Yeah, I can't tell if it included the facsimile pages or not.

The Alan Lee paintings are very tempting, but the 60th edition Spine looks really thin in photos (and the plastic slipcase kinda tacky...), it's not going to be a main reading copy but even so I don't want to fork out 30-40 quid for a book and have it fall apart...

If I'm totally honest I haven't been too impressed with the quality of most of the recent British (Harper Collins) editions...

Hmm...I'll have to think about this scratch Shrugging

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Eldorion on Mon May 30, 2016 5:47 pm

If you want a book that looks and feels really classy then I'd go with the 50th ann. ed. It's great -- leather, gold leaf, non-translucent slipcase (I agree that the 60th's is pretty tacky) -- though mine isn't my main reading copy either so it hasn't been subjeted to much wear.
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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by malickfan on Mon May 30, 2016 5:56 pm

Eldorion wrote:If you want a book that looks and feels really classy then I'd go with the 50th ann. ed. It's great -- leather, gold leaf, non-translucent slipcase (I agree that the 60th's is pretty tacky) -- though mine isn't my main reading copy either so it hasn't been subjeted to much wear.

Yeah I think I'll go with the 50th Anniversary edition. Smile


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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by bungobaggins on Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:46 pm

I'd like to get a newer edition of LOTR. Preferably in one book, and bigger print. Not "I'm old and need huge letters" print, but "I don't want to squint and feel uncomfortable" print.

The paperbacks (Del Rey) I have are all yellowed and not very comfortable to hold.

Looking online the 50th anniversary hardcover edition with the gold leaf must be out of print? Can't seem to find the 60th anywhere.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by halfwise on Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:49 pm

I think the combination of one book and bigger print are somewhat mutually exclusive. Though I suppose larger pages would accommodate that.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by bungobaggins on Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:51 pm

Maybe I could live with three separate books if it spares my eyes.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by bungobaggins on Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:56 pm

I hate Amazon, they've got reviews for completely different editions all lumped together. So every copy of Lord of the Rings that you look at all have the same reviews. What a joke.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by halfwise on Sat Nov 18, 2017 11:02 pm

That's odd. I suggest using the "look inside" feature to see how it feels on your eyes, and see what extras come along with it. What else do you need, really? It's not like you need a review of the text.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by bungobaggins on Sat Nov 18, 2017 11:11 pm

That is true, lol. I'll probably have to go to Barnes and Noble and see what they have.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by halfwise on Sat Nov 18, 2017 11:16 pm

Brick and Mortar or online? Since I moved to NYC 10 years ago I've seen half the bookstores fold up. Sad Given the population density I know we're luckier than most. And hopefully the grand old dames of the used bookstores in this city will never die.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Eldorion on Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:28 am

Amazon reviews are kind of a pain with how they organize them, yeah.

If you want slightly bigger font but something relatively cheap and suitable for everyday reading, then I recommend a trade paperback edition, bungo. That's basically industry lingo for any paperback larger than mass market (the postcard-sized ones, which the Ballantine/Del Rey editions are). The 50th Anniversary One Volume Edition has the full corrected text from the deluxe version of the 50th but is much more reasonable priced (it also comes in a hardcover edition). I have both versions but I rarely take out the leatherbound gold leaf one since my books often sustain a fair bit of wear and tear, although the fold-out maps in the back are quite nice.

https://www.amazon.com/Lord-Rings-50th-Anniversary-Vol/dp/0618640150/

If you're interested in something a little fancier ... I'm striking out at finding either the 50th ann. ed. deluxe or the 60th on Amazon or Houghton Mifflin's website too. The 60th ann. ed. is listed on HarperCollins' site (Tolkien's UK publisher) and I think they ship to the US but I dunno how much extra that'd cost.

http://www.tolkien.co.uk/product/9780007525546/The+Lord+of+the+Rings
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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Eldorion on Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:30 am

Actually speaking of Barnes & Noble they have the deluxe 50th ann. ed. listed on their site! I didn't check there initially because the site gave me so much grief when I worked for them. Razz

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lord-of-the-rings-j-r-r-tolkien/1100188646?ean=9780618517657#/

Also, protip: you should be able to avoid paying for shipping if you have the book sent to your local store and then drive over to pick it up yourself (unless they've changed their policy in the past eight months).
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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by bungobaggins on Sun Nov 19, 2017 1:10 am

I hate to judge a book by it's cover, but I really love how the 60th anniversary edition looks with the blue spine.

I think it might come down to me buying a trade paperback, and a "fancy" edition. I'll have to see what the total cost of the 60th anniversary will be for me.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Eldorion on Sun Nov 19, 2017 1:15 am

I'm not a fan of the slip case but the blue spine is indeed cool. Smile

I think the main selling point for the 60th anniversary edition is that it includes Alan Lee's illustrations from the 1992 Tolkien centenary edition with the corrected text of the 50th ann. ed. I'd still like to own a copy with Lee's illustrations but I can't really justify the price at this point for yet another edition. Razz
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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:17 am

it gives me an excuse to upgrade to a hardback edition.....soI was wandering if anyone had any recommendations? - Malick

{{Yeah dont buy a hardback- by the sounds of your paperback much like my own its well thumbed, well traveled and been on a few interesting adventures of its own. I made the mistake of getting the illustrated Lee hardback edition, its currently in two halves! I find the binding on a book as large as LotR's never holds if you plan on reading it a lot, traveling with it ect- fine if you just want a nice edition for your shelf- but if you want something to read buy the paperback, that way when it inevitably falls apart it wont cost so much to replace. Got to watch your sporran Nod }}}

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by malickfan on Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:17 am

I forgot I started this thread, and I never actually got round to buying a hardback copy...

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Forest Shepherd on Mon Nov 20, 2017 5:40 am

My paperback split in half ages ago and I lost several pages between when Frodo and Sam are making their way through Ithilien and when they encounter Faramir. Rather annoying, but I don't really remember what I'm missing...

What about a three-book edition? Or is that too un-Tolkien and hard to keep track of?

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Eldorion on Mon Nov 20, 2017 6:00 am

Just buy anything but the Ballantine edition. Pokey Tongue

Houghton Mifflin has a nice series of trade paperbacks out which are higher quality than the mass market paperbacks. Amazon is being a pain and the "look inside" feature for the trade paperback actually gives you the mass market edition, but you can see the listings through Houghton Mifflin's website. (Amazon probably offers them for less though; if you search using the ISBN, conveniently located at the end of each of the below URLs, you can be sure you get the right edition.) Because of the lack of the preview function I can't double check but I am 98% sure based on memory from comparing various editions at work that these use the corrected text that initially appeared in the 50th anniversary edition.* Even if they don't, however, they'll still have a more up-to-date version than Ballantine, which still uses the original second edition + supplement that they've had since 1966.

http://www.hmhco.com/shop/books/The-Fellowship-of-the-Ring/9780547928210
http://www.hmhco.com/shop/books/The-Two-Towers/9780547928203
http://www.hmhco.com/shop/books/The-Return-of-the-King/9780547928197

The nice thing about these particular editions, in addition to featuring cover art based on Tolkien's own designs, is that HM has also published editions of The Hobbit, The Silmarillion, and Unfinished Tales in the same style which makes for a nice matched set should you ever be in the market for new versions of the other books again. There's also a four volume boxed set of just TH and LOTR.

I'm not sure if there is a reasonably priced three volume hardcover edition currently in print in the US. I don't believe that we ever carried three volume hardcovers except for the Alan Lee centenary edition, which is pricey and that I wouldn't recommend as a day-to-day reading copy. But there could be one that I just haven't seen.**



*Edit 1: I was able to check the preview of the ebook based on this edition and yes, they do use the text from the 50th.

**Edit 2: turns out there's this edition that was apparently first printed in 1988 but is currently in stock at Amazon. I can't vouch for it though 'cause I'm not familiar with it.

https://www.amazon.com/Fellowship-Ring-Being-First-Rings/dp/0395489318/
https://www.amazon.com/Two-Towers-Being-Second-Rings/dp/0395489334/
https://www.amazon.com/Return-King-Being-theThird-Rings/dp/039548930X/
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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Elthir on Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:52 pm

Forest Shepherd wrote:My paperback split in half ages ago and I lost several pages between when Frodo and Sam are making their way through Ithilien and when they encounter Faramir. Rather annoying, but I don't really remember what I'm missing...

They see a heffalump so large even Eru wondered if Eru could pick it up.

But it trips over a woozle chief and dies, creating an echoing chasm called Bruivith.

If I recall correctly.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by halfwise on Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:43 pm

Actually they saw the heffalump just after meeting Faramir. But right before that Gollum brings back some wabbits and Sam doesn't impress him with cooking skills. Do you have that part? It comes after Gollum is sneezing at the scent of flowers.

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Elthir on Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:38 pm

My mistake!

And incidentally, it really annoyed me that in the films, the woozle captain (cameo Jackson) doesn't trip the Heffalump into making Bruivith, but accidentally knocks it out with a golden snitch voiced by P. Boyens

Jackson can't even resist messing with my fake scenarios Rolling Eyes

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Re: Thinking about buying a (recent) Hardback edition...any recommendations?

Post by Forest Shepherd on Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:04 pm

Well that's all perfectly clear now!

I don't recall the bit about Gollum sneezing, but now I'm not sure.

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