Biographies

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Susan Ang, The Master of the Rings

Inside the World of JRR Tolkien
Wizard Books, 2002. 1st edition. Paperback. Illustrated by Enrique Melatoni. Explores the life of J.R.R. Tolkien and his imaginary world of Middle-earth, discussing the themes uniting The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy and providing a detailed guide to characters, events, places, and historical background. Reprint., Explores the life of J.R.R. Tolkien and his imaginary world, Middle Earth, including themes uniting "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings" and a guide to characters and places.*

The Birmingham Tolkien Trail brochure

Full-colour, doublesided leaflet on Tolkien's childhood in the Birmingham region.*

Robert S. Blackham, The Pitkin Guide to Tolkien

Pitkin, 2011. 1st edition. Paperback. Illustrated with many photographs.

The Pitkin Guide to Tolkien evokes the life and works of the great writer by exploring those places where he lived, worked, socialised and visited, in particular in and around Oxford - during which time he wrote the fantasy sagas The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. These books were destined to change the face of English literature in the 20th century and in the 21st century remain ever-popular classics, and subsequent films have introduced a new generation to the works of this author. *

Robert S. Blackham, The JRR Tolkien Miscellany

The History Press, 2012. 1st edition. Hardback. Illustrated with photographs.
Entertaining and unusual facts, trivia and quotes about Tolkien s life and works. Covers the characters, films, books and life of the great author. Looks at the places that inspired his fictional world of Middle-earth and the problems that fame caused him in the 1960s. Author is foremost Tolkien expert This miscellany explores the fascinating and enigmatic world of J.R.R. Tolkien, examining his place in literary history, his books and his iconic characters. The reader can explore facts and trivia from Tolkien s life and works, including his early life in southern Africa and Birmingham, Tolkien on the silver screen, his role in the two world wars and his friendship with C.S. Lewis, as well as the places that inspired his fictional world of Middle-earth. Both light-hearted and highly informative, this miscellany offers an insight for new and old Tolkien fans into one of the great writers of the twentieth century.*

Robert S. Blackham, Inspiring Lives: JRR Tolkien

The History Press, 2019. Paperback. Illustrated with photo's.

This covers the fascinating and enigmatic world of J.R.R. Tolkien, examining his place in literary history, his books and his iconic characters. The reader can explore facts and trivia from Tolkien's life and works, including his early life in southern Africa and Birmingham, Tolkien on the silver screen, his role in the two world wars and his friendship with C.S. Lewis, as well as the places that inspired his fictional world of Middle-earth.*

Perry C. Bramlett, I Am in Fact a Hobbit

An Introduction to the Life and Work of J.R.R. Tolkien
Mercer, 2003. 1st edition. Hardback.*

Perry C. Bramlett, I Am in Fact a Hobbit (paperback)

An Introduction to the Life and Work of J.R.R. Tolkien
Mercer, 2003. 1st edition. Paperback.*

Josë Bru, "Uncle Curro"

JRR Tolkien's Spanish Connection
Edinburgh, 2018. 1st edtion. Paperback. Signed by the author.

This book is a biography, but also more than that. It reconstructs the little known personal journey of Francis Morgan Osborne (1857-1935), a Catholic priest born in Port St Mary’s (Spain), guardian and “second father” of J.R.R. Tolkien, one of the most celebrated authors of our time.

This is the result of a thorough investigation, carried out between Spain and England, with the support, among others, of Priscilla Tolkien, daughter of the author, whose testimony provided previously unpublished insight into the connection between her father and Spain, through his guardian.

Humphrey Carpenter, JRR Tolkien: A Biography. BCA, 1977

Book Club Association, 1977. 1st edition thus. Hardback Illustated with photo's. Photograph of Tolkien on the cover. Antiquarian: very good condition (dustjacket worn, with some tears).*

Humphrey Carpenter, Tolkien: A Biography. Unwin Paperbacks, 1978

Uwnin Paperbacks, 1978. 1st edition thus. Paperback Illustated with photo's. Photograph of Tolkien on the cover. Antiquarian: very good condition.*

Humphrey Carpenter, J.R.R. Tolkien: En biografi (Swedish)

Awe, 1989. Hardback (no dustjacket issued)

Humphrey Carpenter, J.R.R. Tolkien: une biographie

Christian Bourgois, 1980. 1st edition. Paperback. French translation of Tolkien's biography. Antiquarian: very good condition.*

Humphrey Carpenter, The Inklings: C.S. Lewis, JRR Tolkien and friends

HarperCollins, 1997. Paperback. "A triumph of skill and tact.... not one dull or slack sentence". Illustrated with photographs. Antiquarian: very good condition.*

Humphrey Carpenter, The Inklings: C.S. Lewis, JRR Tolkien and friends

HarperCollins, 2006. Paperback. "A triumph of skill and tact.... not one dull or slack sentence". Illustrated with photographs.*

Humphrey Carpenter, Benjamin Britten: A Biography

Scribners, 1992
1st edition. Hardback. Biography of this famous British composer. Antiquarian: fine condition.*

Oronzo Cilli, Tolkien the Esperantist

Before the arrival of Bilbo Baggins
Barletta, 2017. 1st edition. Paperback.

The book contains studies by Arden R. Smith, Patrick H. Wynne and Oronzo Cilli which examine the connection which existed between J.R.R. Tolkien, and the planned language Esperanto, created by L.L. Zamenhof.

Smith and Wynne’s essay, published originally in Seven (2000), presents Tolkien’s first experiments with inventing languages and analyses in depth his initial encounter with Esperanto, as mentioned in a notebook of his from 1909 which he called the Book of the Foxrook.

Cilli’s essay covers the period of Tolkien’s life when he first encountered Esperanto in his youth, via the Officers’ Training Corps and Baden-Powells’ Scout movement and the celebration of the World Congress of Esperanto (1930), which was attended by R.B. McCallum, and the British Congress of Esperanto (1933), for which Tolkien was named a patron. Thanks to Cilli’s research, a document previously unknown in Tolkien studies, The Educational Value of Esperanto, signed by Tolkien alongside other eminent British academics of the time, is included.

A contribution from Tim Owen of the Esperanto Association of Britain enriches the book. The Foreword is entrusted to John Garth, author of the books Tolkien and the Great War: The Threshold of Middle-earth (HarperCollins, 2003) and Tolkien at Exeter College (Exeter College, 2014).

Signed by Oronzo Cilli.*

David R. Collins, J.R.R. Tolkien: Master of Fantasy.

Minneapolis, 1992
Paperback. Written for high school students, with an amuzing cover (Tolkien reading to two orcs). Illustrated in b&w by William Heagy and many photo's, some here published for the first time.

Michael Coren, J.R.R. Tolkien: The Man Who Created The Lord of the Rings (hardback)

Boxtree, 2001
Boxtree, 2001. 1st edition. Hardback. Illustrated.*

Michael Coren, J.R.R. Tolkien: The Man Who Created The Lord of the Rings (paperback)

Boxtree, 2002. 1st edition thus. Paperback. Illustrated.*

Michael Coren, J.R.R. Tolkien: The Man Who Created The Lord of the Rings (Canadian paperback)

Stoddart, 2002. 1st edition thus. Paperback. Illustrated.*

Michael Coren, Tolkien: Le créateur du Seigneur des Anneaux

French translation of the above biography
HMH, 2001. 1st edition. Paperback. Illustrated.*

John Curtis, Oxford. Jarrold, 2000

Oblong photobook on Oxford, with many Tolkien connections (such as Exeter and Merton College). He is mentioned by a picture of the pub "The Eagle and Child". 1st edition. Hardback (no dustjacket issued)

Raymond Edwards, Tolkien

Hale, 2014. Hardback. Illustrated with photo's.

J.R.R. Tolkien has arguably had a greater influence on contemporary culture and reading habits than any other twentieth century writer. Successful film versions of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit have only increased interest in his work. What sort of man was he, who so profoundly changed the sort of things we read and write? When The Lord of the Rings was published, Tolkien was in his early sixties; until then, he had led the outwardly unremarkable life of an Oxford don. Yet beneath the surface conventionality, his astonishing imaginative life, nourished by the rich sources of his professional interests, grew luxuriantly. This is the first Tolkien biography since Humphrey Carpenter's authorized life of 1977 to deal with the wealth of posthumously published material; it sets Tolkien's imaginative writing firmly in the context of his academic life, shows the great personal and professional difficulties he overcame to complete The Lord of the Rings and charts his ultimately unsuccessful efforts to complete the great cycle of legends that appeared, after his death, as The Silmarillion. It also deals with Tolkien's role in the precipitous decline of his academic discipline, philology, as a university subject; and shows how, in one sense, his imaginative achievement is itself a triumphant vindication of his academic career.*

John Garth, Tolkien and the Great War. The Threshold of Middle-earth

 

HarperCollins, 2004. Paperback. Illustrated with photo's. Focusses on Tolkien's life as a soldier in the First World War.*

John Garth, Tolkien at Exeter College

How an Oxford undergraduate created Middle-earth
Oxford, 2014. 1st editon. Stapled wrappers. Great study, filled with new material on Tolkien's student years. Profusely illustrated with photo's. Signed by the author.*

John Garth, The Worlds of JRR Tolkien

Places that Inspired Middle-earth

Frances Lincoln, 2020. 1st edition. Hardback (no dustjacket issued). Illustrated.

“Every page brings forth the elegiac tone of JRR Tolkien’s work... It is a beautiful book, including many wonderful pictures by Tolkien himself… Garth’s book made me realise the impact that Tolkien has had on my life.”
The Times

A lavishly illustrated exploration of the places that inspired and shaped the work of J.R.R. Tolkien, creator of Middle-earth.
This new book from renowned expert John Garth takes us to the places that inspired J.R.R. Tolkien to create his fictional locations in The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit and other classic works. Featuring more than 100 images, it includes Tolkien’s own illustrations, contributions from other artists, archive images, maps and spectacular present-day photographs.

Inspirational locations range across Great Britain – particularly Tolkien’s beloved West Midlands and Oxford – but also overseas to all points of the compass. Sources are located for Hobbiton, the elven valley of Rivendell, the Glittering Caves of Helm’s Deep, and many other key spots in Middle-earth, as well as for its mountain scenery, forests, rivers, lakes and shorelands.

A rich interplay is revealed between Tolkien’s personal travels, his wide reading and his deep scholarship as an Oxford professor. Garth uses his own profound knowledge of Tolkien’s life and work to uncover the extraordinary processes of invention, to debunk popular misconceptions about the inspirations for Middle-earth, and to put forward strong new claims of his own.

Organised by theme, The Worlds of J.R.R. Tolkien is an illustrated journey into the life and imagination of one of the world’s best-loved authors, an exploration of the relationship between worlds real and fantastical, and an inspiration for anyone who wants to follow in Tolkien’s footsteps.*

Martin Gilbert, The Somme

Heroism and Horror in the First World War
Henry Holt, 2006. 1st edition. Hardback. "For the general reader who wants to know both what happened and how it felt for the men who did the fighting". With many references to Tolkien.*

Roger Lancelyn Green en Walter Hooper, C.S. Lewis. A Biography.

HarperCollins, 2002
1st edition thus. Hardback. In this biography of Tolkien's friend a lot of attention is paid to him as well.

The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis. Volume 2

Books, Broadcasts, and the War. 1931-1949

Harper, 2004. 1st edition. Hardback. Edited by Walter Hooper. Many references to Tolkien.*

Daniel Grotta-Kurska, The Biography of J.R.R. Tolkien: Architect of Middle-earth

Running Press, 1978. Second edition. Library binding with front and rear covers of the trade paperback appliquéd to the boards. Cover by the Brothers Hildebrandt (Tolkien talking to a dwarf). Antiquarian: fine condition.

Daniel Grotta-Kurska, J.R.R. Tolkien: Architect of Middle-earth. 1976

A Biography

Running Press, 1976. 1st edition. Paperback. Cover by Charles Samtora (Hobbits getting out of Tolkien's head). Antiquarian: very good condition (spine faded).*

Daniel Grotta-Kurska, J.R.R. Tolkien: Architect of Middle-earth. 1992

A Biography

Running Press, 1992. 1st edition thus. Hardback. Iilustrations by the Brothers Hildebrandt. Antiquarian: fine condition.*

Daniel Grotta-Kurska, The Biography of J.R.R. Tolkien: Architect of Middle-earth

Running Press, 1978
Pocket. Cover by Hildebrandt (Tolkien talking to a dwarf). Antiquarian: very good condition.*

Daniel Grotta-Kurska, The Biography of J.R.R. Tolkien: Architect of Middle-earth

Running Press, 2002
Paperback. Cover by the brothers Hildebrandt.*

Neil Heims, J.R.R. Tolkien

Great Writers
"This engaging biography explores the very real world of Tolkien's England and the story behind one of the most imaginative literary minds of the twentieth century." With a foreword by Colin Duriez. Philadelphia, 2004. 1st edition. Hardback (no dustjacket issued). *

Okkie de Jager a.o., Tracing the origins of JRR Tolkien in Bloemfontein

Article on Tolkien's childhood in Bloemfontein, South Africa, with many photographs of Bloemfontein taken at the time, as well as autographs of his dad, Arthur. In: The Post Office Stone. The Official Journal of the Postmark and Postal History Society of Southern Africa. Volume 37, number 1, July 2007.*

Clyde S. Kilby, Tolkien & The Silmarillion (paperback)

A glimpse at the man and his world of myth
Lion, 1977. 1st edition. Hardback. Kilby worked shortly with Tolkien on The Silmarillion. In this book, published before The Silmarillion, he writes of his meeting Tolkien and the legendarium Tolkien is working on. Antiquarian: very good condition.*

Ulrike Killer, Das Tolkien Lesebuch

Dtv, 1992. 2nd printing. Paperback. Cover by Tolkien. Biography of Tolkien, some letters, chapters from his work. In German. Antiquarian: very good condition.*

Grevel Lindop, Charles Williams: The Third Inkling

Oxford University Press, 2015. 1st edition. Hardback. Illustrated with photo's. This is the first full biography of Charles Williams (1886-1945), an extraordinary and controversial figure who was a central member of the Inklings―the group of Oxford writers that included C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. Charles Williams―novelist, poet, theologian, magician and guru―was the strangest, most multi-talented, and most controversial member of the group. 

He was a pioneering fantasy writer, who still has a cult following. C.S. Lewis thought his poems on King Arthur and the Holy Grail were among the best poetry of the twentieth century for 'the soaring and gorgeous novelty of their technique, and their profound wisdom'. But Williams was full of contradictions. An influential theologian, Williams was also deeply involved in the occult, experimenting extensively with magic, practising erotically-tinged rituals, and acquiring a following of devoted disciples. *

Doris Lynch, J.R.R. Tolkien: Creator of Languages and Legends

Scholastic, 2003. A biography of Tolkien's life with many illustrations. 1st edition. Hardback (no dustjacket issued).*