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Archive for the ‘Books Publications’ Category

Exclusive: Concept art of Lake-Town from Weta’s ‘Desolation of Smaug’ art & design book


Its always nice to hear from Weta Workshop, but its especially nice when they drop something beautiful in our mailbox. This time it is concept art work from “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Chronicles: Art & Design,” book. Written by Daniel Falconer, this is likely to be an amazing book. TORn got its first look at a similar book by Falconer for the previous movie and it turned out to be as stunning as we imagined it might be. Those who have had occasion to meet the author, who does extensive design work for Weta, know that he is gracious and smart and passionate about the works of J.R.R. Tolkien.

Click for much larger version

Click for larger version

While the masses in the U.S. are out shopping, you can order one of these now and during the pre-order phase, your book gets signed by the concept artists and comes with a “Dragon’s Gold” for Weta discounts and prizes. As you can see above, the image we received is of Lake-Town, from the desks of Alan Lee (who writes the book’s introduction) and John Howe. And please click for the larger version, it is definitely worth

They also included some previously released Elf concept art which you can see below. You can order the book RIGHT HERE. Expect this art to pop up in other places soon and more will be released as Weta and HarperCollins see fit, but for Hobbit fans, this may be among the very best of seasonal gifts.


Posted in Alan Lee, Books, Books Publications, Collectibles, Collectibles, Hobbit Movie, J.R.R. Tolkien, John Howe, Merchandise, Ra Vincent, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Tolkien, Weta Collectibles

Creating a Visual Companion: Jude Fisher talks about her life in Middle-earth

Jude Fisher HeadshotFor those of us who have made a habit out of collecting the various tie-in books that have been released alongside Peter Jackson’s Tolkien adaptations – Jude Fisher is a name that springs instantly to mind. She is the author of the Visual Companion books that have come out with each (more…)

Posted in Alan Lee, Barrie Osborne, Books Publications, Hobbit Movie, John Howe, LotR Production, MGM, Movie Fellowship of the Ring, Movie Return of the King, Movie The Two Towers, New Line Cinema, New Zealand, Peter Jackson, Production, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Warner Bros.

Journey There and Back Again with the Official Yiddish Translation of ‘The Hobbit’


The Yiddish Hobbit Cover“In a hole in the ground, there lived a hobbit.”

One of the great joys of these words is that they are available in so many different languages, as are the countless sentences that follow. They are accessible to so many different cultures and nationalities. Now, for the very first time, Professor Tolkien’s brilliant classic “The Hobbit” is available in the official Yiddish translation, approved by the Tolkien Estate – through Harvard Book Store. (more…)

Posted in Books Publications, Hobbit Book, J.R.R. Tolkien, Languages, Merchandise, The Hobbit, Tolkien, Tolkien Estate

New book reveals previously unprinted artwork and documents the portrayal of Middle-earth across the decades

Middle-earth Envisioned by Brian J Robb and Paul Simpson.

Middle-earth Envisioned by Brian J Robb and Paul Simpson.

Over the decades, lots and lots of people have tried their hand at envisioning Middle-earth — in artwork, stage plays, musicals, television adaptations, comics, games, fan-art and, of course, animated and live action film.

Middle-earth Envisioned is a new, illustrated book From New York Times bestselling author Brian J. Robb and Paul Simpson, TV guide writer/reporter and the former editor of the Star Trek magazine, that comprehensively documents these portrayals of Middle-earth.

Among the highlights is previously unprinted artwork from English schoolteacher Mary Fairbairn. It has been noted that Tolkien himself wrote to Fairburn in 1968, praising her illustrations as “splendid. They are better pictures in themselves and also show far more attention to the text than any that have yet been submitted to me”. (more…)

Posted in Alan Lee, Books Publications, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, John Howe, Lord of the Rings, Merchandise, Other Tolkien books, Peter Jackson, Silmarillion, The Hobbit

Harper Collins competition – win a complete set of new Hobbit publications

As excitement for the release of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug builds, there are all kinds of goodies coming out to go along with the movie, including some fabulous movie tie in books, as well as some new editions of The Hobbit itself.  Our good friends at Harper Collins, publishers for all things Tolkien in Europe, have given us some amazing sets of NINE (well, actually 12, as one is a box set of four!) books to give away to four lucky readers!  The winners will receive:

Annual 2014



The 2014 Hobbit Annual



Movie Storybook



The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Movie Storybook



Official Movie Guide



The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Official Movie Guide



Ultimate Sticker Book



The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Ultimate Sticker Book



Visual Companion



The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Visual Companion



box set



A box set of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings paperback editions with movie tie in covers



Pocket Hobbit



Pocket Hobbit – a mini, hardback edition of the book!



The Hobbit



A new paperback edition of The Hobbit with Desolation of Smaug movie tie in cover



Chronicles Art and Design




The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Chronicles – Art and Design from WETA


All of these books could be yours!  And because we love our readers everywhere, this competition is open worldwide.  All you have to do to win, wherever you are in the world, is answer one simple question and complete the form below.  The competition runs until the opening of the movie, on December 13th; after which we’ll pick four winners at random, from all the correct entries.

Posted in Books, Books Publications, Contests, Events, Hobbit Book, Lord of the Rings, LotR Books, Merchandise, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Tolkien

New images from and review of The Desolation of Smaug 2014 Annual

The Desolation of Smaug Annual 2014

The Desolation of Smaug Annual 2014

If you’ve been thinking about grabbing yourself a copy of The Desolation of Smaug 2014 Annual, the folks at German website Premium Format have posted up a bunch of great images (instead of the terrible ones you usually see that use way too much flash) that showcase just how good this hardcover book looks.

There are a few movie spoiler images. In particular, if you’re avoiding Bear Beorn, you’ll want to look away now. We’ve previously covered the spoiler contents of the book. If you’re interested in those, check out this post from last month. (more…)

Posted in Books Publications, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Win a copy of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Visual Companion that has been signed by the cast members!

The Hobbit Visual Companion Our friends at Harper Collins — the publishers of Tolkien in the UK -– tell us that they’re running another competition in addition to their How do you see Smaug? that is on right now.

This new competition offers the chance to win The Hobbit An Unexpected Journey Visual Companion signed by four members the cast — Martin Freeman, Ian McKellen, Cate Blanchett and Richard Armitage. (more…)

Posted in Books Publications, Cate Blanchett, Collectibles, Hobbit Movie, Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Merchandise, Richard Armitage, The Hobbit

How do YOU see Smaug? Enter to win!

Smaug by Donato GiancolaOur good friends at Harper Collins - Tolkien publishers in the UK – are running a competition where they want to see YOUR version of Tolkien’s mighty dragon Smaug!  They say:

‘Smaug is an incredible and mysterious character, his sleep and anger equally frightful.  J.R.R. Tolkien described and illustrated the dragon with awe-inspiring words and artworks.  Now it’s your turn to create your version of Smaug, as you imagined it when you first read J.R.R. Tolkien’s descriptions.  Illustrators, designers, Hobbit fans of all ages – anyone can enter the competition and submit their Smaug’s artworks to win a fantastic grand prize!’

That prize is a copy of your own illustration, beautifully mounted on canvas!  The winner will also get a collection of Harper Collins Hobbit books.  Ten runners-up will win an exclusive, deluxe print of their artworks.

Smaug, The HobbitGet out those pens, pencils, inks, paint and whatever else takes your fancy, grab a copy of The Hobbit, reread Tolkien’s description of the fiery worm, and get illustrating!  Full details of the contest, and where to submit your artwork, can be found here.  The contest runs until December 13th, when (in many countries) we’ll finally be able to see Peter Jackson’s Smaug in all his glory on the big screen!

Harper Collins will be releasing various movie tie-in books for The Desolation of Smaug on November 7th.  We’ll bring you details – and a chance to win copies! – nearer the time.  Meanwhile you can find more information at Harper Collins’ website, here.

[Click here to enter the Smaug Artwork competition.]


Posted in Books, Books Publications, Contests, Events, Hobbit Book, J.R.R. Tolkien, Merchandise, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Tolkien

Seven new images from the 2014 Desolation of Smaug Desk Diary!

Gandalf Thanks to our friends at, we have another seven new art images from The Desolation of Smaug.

Nothing dramatically revealing here, but we do like the moody shot of a swampy Mirkwood forest (is that the Company crossing a vast fallen tree?), and the RA army will undoubtedly appreciate what seems to be a new still of Thorin Oakenshield. (more…)

Posted in Books Publications, Collectibles, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

New illustrated edition of The Hobbit now available

Yesterday saw not only the launch of the new The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug trailer, but also another exciting release for Tolkien fans – the publication of the latest edition of the book which started it all!  You may remember TORn’s post about Jemima Catlin, the young illustrator behind the first new illustrated edition of The Hobbit since Alan Lee’s iconic version in 1997.  (Catlin is also the featured illustrator for the 2014 Tolkien Calendar.)

This book is now available for purchase in the US!  (It was released by HarperCollins in the UK in September.)  It’s a beautiful edition.  The hardcover, with cloth binding, is charmingly old fashioned, and the cover illustrations have gold accents, which shimmer with the promise of the magic contained within.  Catlin’s images are a combination of pencil, ink and watercolour; there are many little pictures decorating the text, as well as more than ten full page, full colour pieces.  The story is interpretated in lively, delightful drawings which show a new interpretation of old friends.

This is an edition to treasure, and would particularly be a wonderful introduction to The Hobbit for children.  It’s a great reminder that, as spectacular as the movies are, the enchantment began in the pages of a fabulous book.  If you’re thinking about holiday shopping already, add this to the list!  I for one feel I can never have too many editions of The Hobbit; this beautiful new edition is certainly worth adding to your collection.

[Click here to order the new illustrated edition of The Hobbit.] [Click here to order the 2014 Tolkien Calendar]


Posted in Books, Books Publications, Calendars, Calendars, Hobbit Book, J.R.R. Tolkien, Merchandise, Shop, The Hobbit, Tolkien

TORn Light the Beacons auction: Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun Tolkien signed by Dwalin & Bifur, Autographed Official DragonCon Contest 1 Cert by Bifur, Dwalin, Radagast

As you know, we’re currently conducting our pledge drive to raise funds and keep our servers running. We also have some very exciting auctions going on over at Ebay.

There are some fabulous, exclusive pieces up for grabs – including some things which, usually, money can’t buy! Time is running out on some of our auctions too, so best check them out now. Here are just a couple that might tickle your fancy:


Posted in Books Publications, Collectibles, Conventions, DragonCon, Events, Graham McTavish, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Posters Prints, Sylvester McCoy, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun, Announcements, William Kircher

The wondrous world of The Hobbit from The Desolation of Smaug Annual!

DoS Annual 2014 Bard Here are three quite interesting descriptions from The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Annual 2014 of the areas of Middle-earth that Thorin & Company will be passing through early on in The Desolation of Smaug.

Not much that’s new, but it’s certainly more confirmation of divergences from Tolkien’s novel. If you’re trying to remain unaware of these little surprises, don’t read on — here be SPOILERS!

But if you like what you see, you can order your copy of the book from Amazon.


Bilbo’s travels with Thorin and the rest of The Company have taken him far from his home in The Shire. From towering mountains to cavernous depths, the heroes find themselves passing through some truly amazing places.

Beorn’s cabin

When the group are searching for somewhere to rest after their dangerous journey through the Misty Mountains, Gandalf leads them here. But after they are chased by a huge bear, Bilbo thinks that htey might have been safer if they’d stayed up a tree surrounded by Wargs!

However, the Shape-shifter Beorn reveals that he is the bear, and welcomes everyone into his home. They Company are able to rest here in peace before continuing their quest.


When Gandalf heads south on a quest of his own, The Company are faced with travelling through this weird wood on their own. Blanketed in shadows and filled with decay and evil, Mirkwood has claimed the lives of many an unwary traveller. If the deadly waters of its dark rivers don’t claim you, then one of the horrible creatures lurking in the shadows surely will…

The Hall of the Elvenking

The fortress of Thranduil, the King of the Wood Elves. Thranduil sees Mirkwood as his private realm and has little patience for those who enter it without his premission — especially if they happen to be Dwarves. Built over the swift river that leads to the Long Lake, it is here Thorin and his companions are taken when they are captured by the Elves. Luckily for them, Bilbo has a trick or two up his sleeve.

If you enjoy the work we do here at, and would like to see your Tolkien community keep on growing and growing, please consider making a Pledge. Time is fast running out to join the Tale of Honour — there’s only a day or so left on our Pledge Drive!

Posted in Books Publications, Headlines, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug