Ever since I joined GR I ve been putting off the writing of this book s review but since I m high as fuck on cold medicine I feel like I can do it so here suffer thru it Along long time ago a little 3rd world kid with an afro became fascinated of what he read on the internet about some British writer named Tolkien he wanted his books it became his obsession so he embarked on a quest to find his books and read the shit out of them but alas The book was no where to be found on his dumb little island but that wasn t going to stop our little afro hero he looked and looked, he went to used bookstores, he ordered 5 times in the expensive ones, he looked online, on the streets, even on the flea markets but they were not to be found one day after wating for 2 hours for his translator to finish translating and E copy of The Lord of The Ring The Fellowship of The Ring Into Spanish and realizing that it made no fucking sense once translated our little afro hero went into the internet and founded the only bookstore with most of Tolkien s work on stock in Spanish But there was only one problem the fucking bookstore was in freaking Spain the cost of the books SH was way of what our hairy friend had on his piggy bank so he did the unthinkable his parents had been bitching about his afro for months So he proposed to them that in exchange of his fro they should give him the books he wanted and they accepted in an act of self mutilation our fuzzy friend shaved his head to show his parent s his anger over making him lose his fro after that the money was given to him he could order now his parents weren t as stupid as he always thought and that day That day the curse was born It was like the curse of Feanor but lame, the books took an entire year to arrive now imagine our froless hero waiting and waiting and calling and emailing and checking and re checking for a whole mother fucking year with his shaved head for those of you who wonder this is why I will never again buy a book from the internet, I m fucking traumatized but when they got there how to put it into words I read the first book 600 pages in one day the second in 3 days, the third in 2 days, the fourth on a day and a half and then it was time for the Silmarillion I didn t know nothing about the Silmarillion I left it for last cuz I thought it would be the most boring one and boy was I wrong The first part The Music of the Ainur was such a mind blowing experience to me to the point of I cannot talk about anything else but how metal it sounded that my friends started complaining somebody got to the point of threaten me that if said something else about Melkor being the coolest I was going to get punch in the balls I mean if you ever read this book you should know how Melkor invented heavy metal on it then it was the lamps and all the gay stuff that I didn t like that s when I used to think Melkor was the coolest then came The Trees and I was just fascinated of how beautiful everything was I know it sounds mad gay But it was And then Melkor did something that made me stop thinking of him as the coolest he killed The Trees is not like I cried or anything like that but you know that was fuck up The guy is cool and all but I know it sounds stupid but I did like those Trees man by this time I was so lost in this book that one could actually call it an obsession I was walking while reading, talking to the characters if I were to get a penny for every time I told a character on this book turn back you fool I d be rich by now look I don t wanna ruin anything to anybody I could honestly talk for hours about how fucking awesome Feanor is Or how big Fingolfin s balls are bigger than Steven s or how beautiful Luthien was and how I wished she never met Beren, or how fucking sick and twisted Morgoth gets I mean the man was sick But I need to stop Cuz if I don t I ma be here for ever I wanna say is that Tolkien was the mother fucking greatest of all times man this is just such a beautiful book even tho the paper don t agree with me on this it was self mutilation She has no idea how attached I was to that fro How To Build A Truly Convincing Fantasy World1 It s all about the language Make sure your world s language is convincing, and you re pretty much there Conversely, if your language sucks then everything else will.2 Your book can t include than a few sentences in your invented language without losing your audience But it can include plenty of names So what people will really judge you on is the quality of the names.The rest of this review is available elsewhere the location cannot be given for Goodreads policy reasons Writing a review of the Silmarillion is like trying to review the Bible Where do you even start There s just so much story in here Any attempt to convey it in a review would be to do the book a massive disservice There would only ever be enough space to talk about one or a few elements of the work So instead I thought I d give my reasoning as to why every Tolkien enthusiast needs to read this in order to fully understand Tolkien the sheer depth of the workIt is said by the Eldar that in water there lives yet the echo of the Music of the Ainur than in any substance that is in this Earth and many of the Children of Il vatar hearken still unsated to the voices of the Sea, and yet know not for what they listen The history of middle earth is very rich, and it stretches a very long way Much further than the time of Sauron and the Ring And this sense of history is only very briefly glimpsed within The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit if at all The Silmarillion is the entire picture it is the entire vison of Tolkien s fantasy world It s a huge piece of world building, and there really is nothing else quite like it In here he relays a huge amount of history, a truly staggering amount for a fictional world to possess I often talk about the need for world building in fantasy, and here it is in full force It s astonishing It s beyond imaginative It goes further than anything before it and since And this is why Tolkien is the master of the genre He wasn t the first, and he certainly won t be the last to write such fiction, but he was the best writer to ever attempt it He than set the benchmark when he wrote this So if you re thinking about reading this, but find the task at hand a little bit too daunting, then stop thinking Pick this book and lose yourself in the history of the greatest fantasy universe ever created You won t regret it. The Silmarillion, J.R.R Tolkien The Silmarillion is a collection of mythopoeic works by English writer J R R Tolkien, edited and published posthumously by his son, Christopher Tolkien, in 1977, with assistance from Guy Gavriel Kay The Silmarillion, along with J R R Tolkien s other works, forms an extensive, though incomplete, narrative that describes the universe of E in which are found the lands of Valinor, Beleriand, N menor, and Middle earth, within which The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings take place 2009 1385 455 9648249407 1386 624 9643342662 1393 9786007721070 Oh woe begotten spirit, fall now into dark oblivion, and forget for a while the dreadful doom of life I must admit I struggled Though I love the Lord of the Rings and the Middle Earth Universe with all of my heart, tackling a large part of its history in this manner was tough going The world Tolkien created is absolutely extraordinary, without a doubt Unfortunately The Silmarillion is written as a long history or mythology of biblical proportions Name after name, battle after battle, son after son It was hard to follow I can respect how wonderfully intricate and detailed the world is but with that many characters and no straight story to follow through I m pleased to be able to say I ve done it, but I don t think it s one I ll be able to come back to time and again I ll stick to LOTR I think Though I will read Beren and L thien and The Children of H rin when I can Tolkien truly is a master 3.5 starsHelp oft shall come from the hands of the weak when the wise falter Buddy re read with Shii I ve been contemplating whether or not to tackle the challenge of actually reviewing this masterpiece for quite some time now In the end, after having finished reading it for the second time, I realised that I should at least throw out my thoughts on it So here we go This is in my eyes the most impressive book ever written.Notice how I did not say best That was completely intentional I do not believe it is the best book ever written, even though I know others think so, and I understand their opinions I also know people who have given up on reading this book, or been baffled by the thought of even attempting it And I understand them too This is not the most exciting fantasy book you ll find But I stand by it being the most impressive one.After almost reluctantly publishing The Hobbit and very reluctantly writing and publishing its sequel The Lord of the Rings, Tolkien could finally concentrate on what he actually wanted to do to complete his collection of tales on the mythology and origins of Arda, often just referred to as Middle Earth The result, though published after the great man himself had passed away, became The SilmarillionOn the back of my little blue timeworn paperback, which is almost twice as old as I am, I read a little quote from the Guardian review of the original release It saysHow, given little over half a century of work, did one man become the creative equivalent of a peopleAnd the question or less summarises my own feelings on this book and Tolkien s other works These three hundred pages have given life to the most impressive achievement of human creativity ever No fantasy author has ever done anything matching this, and it is my firm belief that no one ever will The only book The Silmarillion can be compared to is the Bible and I hope I do not offend anyone by saying this even it does not come close to this.The creation of the World by the songs of the Ainur the schemes of Morgoth Bauglir for dominion over the world the making of the wondrous Silmarils the breeding of great Dragons in the firepits of Angband the story of Beren and L thien tales of war and betrayal and love and loss and joy and grief and everything you could possibly imagine in a tale of fantasy All of it can be found within the pages of this little book.This book is not for everyone In fact, I would only recommend it to those who have read and loved both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings But I wouldn t hesitate to call it the greatest masterpiece of worldbuilding the fantasy genre has ever had.All that remains is to refer you to my little collection of quotes and artwork from the most important scenes of the book Most of you have already seen it, but for those who haven t, please have a look When the Valar entered into E they were at first astounded and at a loss, for it was as if naught was yet made which they had seen in vision, and all was but on point to begin and yet unshaped, and it was dark For the Great Music had been but the growth and flowering of thought in the Timeless Halls, and the Vision only a foreshowing but now they had entered in at the beginning of Time, and the Valar perceived that the World had been but foreshadowed and foresung, and they must achieve it So began their great labours in wastes unmeasured and unexplored, and in ages uncounted and forgotten, until in the Deeps of Time and in the midst of the vast halls of E there came to be that hour and that place where was made the habitation of the Children of Il vatar. Dark now fell the shadow on Beleriand, as is told hereafter, but in Angband Morgoth forged for himself a great crown of iron, and he called himself King of the World In token of this he set the Silmarils in his crown His hands were burned black by the touch of those hallowed jewels, and black they remained ever after nor was he ever free from the pain of the burning, and the anger of the pain. The one had leaves of dark green that beneath were as shining as silver, and from each of his countless flowers a dew of silver light was ever falling, and the earth beneath was dappled with the shadows of his fluttering leaves The other bore leaves of a young green like the new opened beech their edges were of glittering gold Flowers swung upon her branches in clusters of yellow flame, formed each to a glowing horn that spilled a golden rain upon the ground and from the blossom of that tree there came forth warmth and a great light. So in that place which was called Losgar at the outlet of the Firth of Drengist ended the fairest vessels that ever sailed the sea, in a great burning, bright and terrible And Fingolfin and his people saw the light afar off, red beneath the clouds and they knew that they were betrayed. In the front of that fire came Glaurung the golden, father of dragons, in his full might and in his train were Balrogs, and behind them came the black armies of the Orcs in multitudes such as the Noldor had never seen or imagined. He passed over Dor nu Fauglith like a wind amid the dust, and all that beheld his onset fled in amaze, thinking that Orom himself was come for a great madness of rage was upon him, so that his eyes shone like the eyes of the Valar Thus he came alone to Angband s gates, and he sounded his horn, and smote once upon the brazen doors, and challenged Morgoth to come forth to single combat And Morgoth came. Blue was her raiment as the unclouded heaven, but her eyes were grey as the starlit evening her mantle was sewn with golden flowers, but her hair was dark as the shadows of twilight As the light upon the leaves of trees, as the voice of clear waters, as the stars above the mists of the world, such was her glory and her loveliness and in her face was a shining light. Before the rising of the sun Earendil slew Ancalagon the Black, the mightiest of the dragon host, and cast him from the sky and he fell upon the towers of Thangorodrim, and they were broken in his ruin. And thus it came to pass that the Silmarils found their long homes one in the airs of heaven, and one in the fires of the heart of the world, and one in the deep waters. Ever they dwindled with the years, until their glory passed, leaving only green mounds in the grass At length naught was left of them but a strange people wandering secretly in the wild, and other men knew not their homes nor the purpose of their journeys, and save in Imladris, in the house of Elrond, their ancestry was forgotten. Then the name of the forest was changed and Mirkwood it was called, for the nightshade lay deep there, and few dared to pass through, save only in the north where Thranduil s people still held the evil at bay. In the twilight of autumn it sailed out of Mithlond, until the seas of of the Bent World fell away beneath it, and the winds of the round sky troubled it no , and borne upon the high airs above the mists of the world it passed into the Ancient West, and an end was come for the Eldar of story and of song. Sauron was become now a sorceror of dreadful power, master of shadows and of phantoms, foul in wisdom, cruel in strength, misshaping what he touched, twisting what he ruled, lord of werewolves his dominion was torment. Ah, Sauron, Maia of Aul beyond doubt the singularly most enthralling antagonist whom I encountered as a young reader, possessing all of the malevolence and dark charisma and naked power of Satan, but unhobbled by the multi aspectual morphology of Christian theology and popular culture that far too often rendered the Devil a ridiculous figure a wild eyed and beastly fornication ringmaster cavorting with naked acolytes a scarlet skinned, pitchfork wielding fashion model for forked tails and forehead horns or slyly smiling traveling salesman, pitching his gimcrack wares backed by loosely enforced contracts claiming lien upon some drink tossed wastrel s dubiously valuable soul But Sauron the dude fell, the dude schemed, the dude was scary, whether donning the raiments of a beautiful, translucent ring wise man or an unbearably, searingly abhorrent humanoid vessel of the void.There exists no other book that I ve read as many times as The Silmarillion Much than the questing, heroic storyline of The Lord of the Rings was I drawn to the background of all those tumultuous events, the grand personages and royal lineages that stretched back into the mists of primordial time Where did Sauron come from From what pit originally arose the Balrog What order was Gandalf exactly a member of Who were Beren and Luthien, and what relevance did their own story have to this ultimate chapter of the War of the Rings playing out on the pages before me Immediately that I finished the trilogy I rushed into the Silmarillion and though at that time I was still too young to appreciate the allusions to other great mythologies, to the wonderful intricacies of the languages that Tolkien had constructed for his Middle Earth races, to the powerful theme of tragedy always linked with a hubris of the striving spirit that was enjoined to the Noldorin rebellion against the Valar and their heroic but doomed struggle against Melkor, He Who Arises in Might, Morgoth Bauglir the Black Enemy Radical Valar Renegade, Spawner of the Orcs, Dark Lord of the Balrogs, Tutoring Patron of Sauron in toto, Supreme Badass Motherfucker of all Middle Earth still I was held spellbound by these glimpses into the Great Creation, the Dawn of Elves and Men, the Noldorin Exile and the fate of the Silmarils, which ended with such a perfect balance, the priceless jewels at rest at the bottom of the sea, the deepest of earthen chasms, and the highest heights of the heavens What s , after the breaking of Beleriand the reader is presented with the awesome arc of the founding and the doom of N menor, in which Sauron gloatingly laughed atop the Island s mountain temple and lustfully defied the punishing lighting strokes that sizzled through the nighttime air and the concluding overview of the War of the Rings, in which much is explained that makes The Lord of the Rings even enjoyably complete than when the trilogy and its prequel The Hobbit were the only source for the incredibly deep history that Tolkien had woven from his lifelong love of language.These annals, with their brilliantly etched admixtures of beauty and short lived heroic triumphs set against an overpowering sense of futility and tragic defeat at the hands of an enemy whose cunning is as deep as the infernal pits of his cavernous dungeons and whose malice engirds the star kissed world, whose very corruption has been bled into the core of creation itself, were just what were needed to spark a young imagination Tolkien s private amusements and delights mirrored my own in their fledgling form, and inspired me to tributary tasks of creation that nobody else could understand or appreciate but which gave me immense personal satisfaction They awoke within me the powerful demiurgical desire to craft worlds, populate them, endow them with their own gods and mythologies, formulate a history, laden it with political systems, the whole works, all in the service of a time bound fate that culminates in an apocalyptic showdown betwixt the dark and the light At that point in a person s life, when the complex and inscrutable mathematical rituals and hierarchical causality of all powerful modern science have immense appeal but few handholds, the prismatic and primal allure of myth and magic, the intuitive interconnectedness of nature with the sorcerously creative will of man, even at that tender age a force struggling to avoid restraint and desperately endeavoring to draw power from those spiritual furnaces deep within, the font of dreams, such tales of heroism and fortitude in the face of the supernatural are, for many, very hard to resist What s , the channeling of natural phenomenon into organic spirits with anthropomorphic features and forms offers another intuitively appealing means to understanding a vast material world that otherwise seems awesomely inexplicable and frighteningly unpredictable Stories that tap into our innate desire both to be entertained and be edified by human theatre set within the panoramic vistas of a horizon hid past Tolkien delivered in spades.I don t care that it was edited by Christopher Tolkien and Guy Gavriel Kay and, thus, can t be declared canonical Who gives a shit Some complain that it reads like a Middle Earth bible, that its archaic style and portentous prose are a labor to struggle through, and provide nothing as satisfying as the great trilogy he had wrought Ah, tell it to the judge They read like the annals composed from the mythological strains that wend across a mysterious, fate bound history that they, in fact, are it s just that this particular history was played out solely within the mental confines a rich cerebral theatre of the author, and possessed a coherence and potency to rival the mythologies of the Greeks or the Northmen What could a reader want If Tolkien s labour of love, crafted and edited, reworked and rewritten, was of such an amazing expressiveness and beauty and power that it both upheld the Ring Trilogy and lit its mythological intimations with a fulgent blaze that only served to augment one s appreciation of the latter s depths, then why not put it out there for that multitude of fans who were dying to sample of the mystical marvels from one of the greatest and most uniquely imaginative minds of the past century The Story Of The Creation Of The World And Of The First Age, This Is The Ancient Drama To Which The Characters In The Lord Of The Rings Look Back And In Whose Events Some Of Them, Such As Elrond And Galadriel, Took Part The Three Silmarils Were Jewels Created By F Anor, Most Gifted Of The Elves Within Them Was Imprisoned The Light Of The Two Trees Of Valinor Before The Trees Themselves Were Destroyed By Morgoth, The First Dark Lord Thereafter, The Unsullied Light Of Valinor Lived On Only In The Silmarils, But They Were Seized By Morgoth And Set In His Crown, Which Was Guarded In The Impenetrable Fortress Of Angband In The North Of Middle Earth The Silmarillion Is The History Of The Rebellion Of F Anor And His Kindred Against The Gods, Their Exile From Valinor And Return To Middle Earth, And Their War, Hopeless Despite All Their Heroism, Against The Great Enemy 3.5 5 starsWith a new interest and determination, I have finally finished reading The Silmarillion.I have failed this book twice and I was so sure that I won t attempt reading it again However, I have just finished re watching The Lord of the Rings trilogy extended editions and reading the Three Great Tales of Middle Earth that s edited by Christopher Tolkien I know this is not the recommended reading order but it s only because of doing these two activities that I found a new interest, knowledge, and motivation to actually persevere and finish this book.Picture Fingolfin versus Morgoth by Art CalaveraFinishing The Silmarillion for the first time was one of the most difficult reads I ve ever attempted in my life It was so difficult that in my opinion, reading this book alone was harder than reading the entirety of Malazan Book of the Fallen. My main problem with it was that that I found it the first half of this book to be extremely boring I m talking about hundreds of names characters, places, events being fired non stop at readers, monumental events happening in two sentences, and the extreme difficulty in caring with the characters because there was close to zero character s thoughts exploration due to the biblical style of writing However, after reading the three Great Tales of Middle Earth, these names started to become familiar and much easier to remember In fact, when I got back to it, I found the second half to be so full of engaging and epic eventsAll have their worth and each contributes to the worth of the othersI won t be reviewing each story in this book, there are way too many of them and I genuinely think a lot of Tolkienist can do a much better job in explaining the greatness of this book Instead, I ll say this The First Age of Middle Earth makes the event of the Third Age events in The Lord of the Rings trilogy looks like a normal skirmish There were so many incredible and epic battle waged tons of tragedy and loss unmeasurable evil of Morgoth that makes Sauron looks like a brat Out of all the stories included in this book, there were two that stands out the most to me One is obviously the story of Turin Turambar that has already been told in full details on The Children of Hurin I have done a full review on this story but to summarize it, I absolutely loved it and I have no doubt it will be even better upon a reread one day.Picture The Sack of Nargothrond by Donato GiancolaThe other favorite story was definitely the War of Wrath which depicts the final battle of colossal proportion that ended the First Age of Middle Earth It s such a shame though that this chapter was super short Like many of the stories contained in this book, I genuinely think that if the right author re wrote these stories with multi characters POV to follow instead of an omniscient biblical style of writing, War of Wrath would definitely be one of the most epic fantasy war to be written It s seriously hard to explain the scope of this battle, instead, I ll show you an image of the battle between Earendil the tiny blue light in the picture and Ancalagon the Black.Picture The Dragon and the Star by Manuel Casta n The Silmarillion was not an easy read and the first half of the book was completely not fun at all to read Due to the nature of writing style, there were also a lot of events that could ve worked so much better rather than making me feel so distant However, this book clearly shows Tolkien s capability as a pioneer in fantasy world building I didn t even know how rich the lore and history behind Middle Earth was until I ve read this one I highly recommend this book for patient readers and obviously, fans of Tolkien If you re not a huge fan of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, I really think that it s not mandatory for you to push through this book if it s not working for you Don t get me wrong, there were a lot of great scenes that really shows Tolkien s imagination at its highest level But overall, I think I m left wanting out of the stories than feeling completely satisfied.You can order the book from Book Depository Free shipping You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions Though I had many near misses with The Silmarillion throughout the years having been introduced to Tolkien s universe by discovering The Hobbit in my school s library in 5th grade , I finally slogged my way through it during the summer after my sopho year of college The first two years of my undergraduate degree were rather gruelling, and I wanted, than anything else at that time, to just read a bunch of books I wasn t required to read After making my way through The Complete Sherlock Holmes, I decided to revisit Tolkien.I had read The Hobbit twice before and the Lord of the Rings once and a half As I ve stated, I dipped my toes in The Silmarillion, but never let myself dive in This time, in the interest of reading something other than required reading, I jumped in with both feet It was cold And deep And dark It took a while to feel my limbs It took even longer to get my arms and legs moving, but I soon found I was OK Still breathing and able to dog paddle As I worked my way into it and it was work , I discovered that certain tidbits in the myths and legends of middle earth rang familiar I knew that much of The Silmarillion had been back written after the fact, which might strike people as some sort of disingenuous act on the part of the Tolkiens I was thrilled Here I learned who Elrond was, the significance of the fall of Saruman, and the true nature of and relationship between Gandalf and the Balrog This was a revelation.I plugged my way through and finished No, I didn t remember everything and I probably never will That summer was a unique opportunity for me, to read almost interrupted for such a long stretch I followed up by reading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings in succession, immediately after finishing The Silmarillion Then, and only then, did I appreciate the full magnitude of Tolkien s brilliance It was a whole new world I had already visited it, but now the scales fell from my eyes and I saw it in a whole new light The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings were transformed, for me, from great books to epic.Rather than being caught up in complaining about how difficult The Silmarillion was, I felt richly rewarded I had worked for the glittering prize and it was even beautiful than the time when I first laid eyes on it in that musty school library in Nebraska Can nostalgia be forward looking It was for me that summer I was caught in some sort of blissful time loop that only released me when the urgency of school set upon me again that fall But something joyful was sparked in me that hasn t ever fully left, thanks to The Silmarillion.