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The Lord of the Rings, Alan Lee illustrated May 2020

Dec 15, 2019
2019/12/15 21:54:30 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Just spotted 3 volumes on Amazon Uk for pre-sale, illustrated by Alan Lee.

The Fellowship of the Ring at 464 pages and 19 illustrations.

The Two Towers at 400 pages and 16 illustrations.

The Return of the King at 496 pages and 15 illustrations.

I assume they will be the 50 illustrations included in the Houghton Mifflin edition but the page count seems high at 1360 for the 3 volumes.
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Feb 16
2020/2/16 2:29:39 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
(like not look)
Feb 16
2020/2/16 11:12:46 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Thanks for posting the images. I note also that the box set has now changed the page count from 912 to 1601. Still a couple hundred pages over the page count of the 4 books.
Feb 18 (edited)
2020/2/18 18:17:26 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Feb 18
2020/2/18 21:27:39 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
I'm also curious if The Fellowship of the Ring Nazgul frontispiece will be on a fold-out sheet; like how it was presented in The Lord of the Rings 60th Anniversary Illustrated Edition. (That allowed us to see the image in full.)
Feb 19
2020/2/19 9:11:00 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
This is pre-ordered for me.
Lovely box-set !
Feb 20
2020/2/20 16:11:45 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
It certainly looks to be, for sure!

I always thought that a one-book illustrated edition of The Lord of the Rings to be utterly stupid - how do the publishers expect readers to read the book? It's too impractical! A one-book edition of The Lord of the Rings without illustrations is cumbersome as it is! With illustrations, 3 books makes much more sense.

The covers of The Lord of the Rings books is exactly the same as the 1992 illustrated hardbacks by Alan Lee. The Hobbit, meanwhile, always showed Alan Lee's Smaug on the cover. I wish that the covers of these, were also the same images used previously for the illustrated editions: Smaug for The Hobbit, Dwarrowdelf for The Fellowship of the Ring, Orthanc for The Two Towers and Minas Tirith for The Return of the King.

These also look to match Alan Lee's Great Tales hardbacks (The Children of Hurin , Beren and Luthien and The Fall of Gondolin). Because of this (and the size dimensions), these will not be 'oversized' hardbacks, but rather standard hardback size. Also, I have a feeling that it will be a 'mix' of paper type - standard for text and any pencil sketches, with photo-paper ('plates') used for the illustrations. Speaking of illustrations, I'm also curious if The Fellowship of the Ring illustrated frontispiece illustration of the Nazgul will appear as a three-page foldout sheet, the way it did for the 60th anniversary illustrated one-book edition. And, to go further, could we also expect foldout maps? The Children of Hurin and The Fall of Gondolin had them - but not Beren and Luthien for some stupid reason.

These questions will be answered in time once these books are published and we've had a chance to look at them.

...but what about The Silmarillion?

The Silmarillion was illustrated by Ted Nasmith, rather than by Alan Lee. In 1998, the original edition appeared with 18 illustrations Then, in 2004, a second edition appeared with about 50 illustrations - I think the exact number was 48. There was also a paperback edition in 2008 which had some, but not all, the illustrations - 16 in total. But, why I mention The Silmarillion is this - there's no new 'matching' edition to go with The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings! The oversized edition from 2004 is still in print/back in print, though due to the size dimensions; it won't 'match' with the new editions The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

Another thing to think of, if there was a matching edition of The Silmarillion which one would it be? These editions of The Lord of the Rings appear to be quite similar to the original ones from 1992. Would The Silmarillion be similar to the 1998 edition ('Maglor Casts a Silmaril into the Sea' as the cover, and has 18 illustrations), the 2004 edition ('White Ships to Valinor' as the cover, 48 illustrations) or the 2008 paperback ('Ships of the Faithful' as the cover, 16 illustrations)? One final thing to bear in mind is this - the editions from 1998 and 2008 featured a mix of paper (regular for text, photo style for the illustrations), while the 2004 edition was printed entirely on photo paper (like the 2002 illustrated editions of The Lord of the Rings); thus allowing the capability to include more images.
Feb 20
2020/2/20 18:02:15 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
They need to get Alan Lee to illustrate the Silmarillion. Period!
Feb 20
2020/2/20 19:58:09 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Nah, Ted Nasmith is personally my fave Tolkien artist. As much as I love Alan Lee's artwork, I find it to be slightly oversaturated lately.

During one of his live videos in the past where he was sketching and answering questions via facebook, the guy from HarperCollins asked a question: "Would Alan like to do The Silmarillion?" To which re replied something along the lines of: with The Three Great Tales, he sort of already has illustrated it."

Again nothing against Alan, though Ted is my fav, just between Beren and Luthien, The Fall of Gondolin and The Hobbit Sketchbook, it's been quite a bit recently.
Feb 23
2020/2/23 17:13:14 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
As requested, here is my blog post about all the info, cover art, etc, as well as my speculations about a few finer details.

http://insurrbution.blogspot.com/2020/02/updated-info-on-forthcoming-hobbit-lord.html
Feb 23
2020/2/23 18:04:27 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Thanks for sharing (and good writeup!) insurrbution
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