A unique insight into the evolution of The Lord of the Rings, detailing how mistakes crept in almost from the first printing, how Tolkien changed the text during his lifetime, posthumous changes made by Christopher Tolkien and a previously unpublished Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings, written by Tolkien himself. Since its first publication fifty years ago, The Lord of the Rings has generated an almost unparalleled interest from both fans and critics alike. Every detail of its 500,000+ words has been examined and discussed, making it the most widely studied -- and enjoyed -- work of fiction of the 20th century. In The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion, Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull unravel the story of how an epic battle has been fought for decades, first by Professor Tolkien, then by his son, Christopher, to maintain the integrity of this huge story. They examine the work chapter by chapter, providing details of: Notes on significant author changes, when they entered, and any background history Notes on changes made by Christopher Tolkien, and differences between the earliest manuscripts and the printed text References to people, places and events that appear in other Tolkien books Explanations of unusual words Appearing for the first time, Tolkien's own Guide to the Names in The Lord of the Rings , with fascinating notes by him about many of the names he invented The Lord of the Rings: A Reader's Companion will provide a unique insight into the creative process of a true genius, and will offer a detailed and informative account of how the Book of the Century has evolved from one generation to the next.
Wayne G Hammond is a librarian at the Chapin Library of Rare Books at Williams College Massachusetts. He is the author of The Graphic Art of C.B. Falls (1892), J.R.R. Tolkien: A Descriptive Bibliography (1993), and regular notes on Tolkien in the journal Mythlore. Christina Scull is the former librarian of Sir John Soane's Museum, London. She is the author of The Soane Hogarths (1991), edits the journal The Tolkien Collector, and frequently writes and speaks about Tolkien. Together, Wayne and Christina have written the two-volume J.R.R. TOLKIEN COMPANION & GUIDE and edited Tolkien's ROVERANDOM and FARMER GILES OF HAM 50th anniversary edition.