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The Children of Húrin

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This tale of Middle-earth's First Age, which appeared in incomplete forms in the posthumously published The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales , also edited by Tolkien's son, Christopher, only hinted at the depth and power of the tragic story of Túrin and Niënor, the children of Húrin, the lord of Dor-lómin, who achieved renown for having confronted Morgoth, who was This tale of Middle-earth's First Age, which appeared in incomplete forms in the posthumously published The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales , also edited by Tolkien's son, Christopher, only hinted at the depth and power of the tragic story of Túrin and Niënor, the children of Húrin, the lord of Dor-lómin, who achieved renown for having confronted Morgoth, who was the master of Sauron, the manifestation of evil in the Lord of the Rings. Six thousand years before the One Ring is destroyed, Middle-earth lies under the shadow of the Dark Lord Morgoth. The greatest warriors among elves and men have perished, and all is in darkness and despair. But a deadly new leader rises, Túrin, son of Húrin, and with his grim band of outlaws begins to turn the tide in the war for Middle-earth -- awaiting the day he confronts his destiny and the deadly curse laid upon him.


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This tale of Middle-earth's First Age, which appeared in incomplete forms in the posthumously published The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales , also edited by Tolkien's son, Christopher, only hinted at the depth and power of the tragic story of Túrin and Niënor, the children of Húrin, the lord of Dor-lómin, who achieved renown for having confronted Morgoth, who was This tale of Middle-earth's First Age, which appeared in incomplete forms in the posthumously published The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales , also edited by Tolkien's son, Christopher, only hinted at the depth and power of the tragic story of Túrin and Niënor, the children of Húrin, the lord of Dor-lómin, who achieved renown for having confronted Morgoth, who was the master of Sauron, the manifestation of evil in the Lord of the Rings. Six thousand years before the One Ring is destroyed, Middle-earth lies under the shadow of the Dark Lord Morgoth. The greatest warriors among elves and men have perished, and all is in darkness and despair. But a deadly new leader rises, Túrin, son of Húrin, and with his grim band of outlaws begins to turn the tide in the war for Middle-earth -- awaiting the day he confronts his destiny and the deadly curse laid upon him.

30 review for The Children of Húrin

  1. 4 out of 5

    Petrik

    This is one of Tolkien’s best works. Maybe even the best. I never expected Tolkien to write a story as dark and tragic as the one portrayed in The Children of Hurin. First, a full disclosure that might anger Tolkien fanatics. During the time of writing this review, despite the fact that I’ve watched The Lord of the Rings trilogy more than ten times, I’m sorry to say that I wasn’t able to finish reading The Fellowship of the Rings because I was extremely bored with it. It’s most likely because the This is one of Tolkien’s best works. Maybe even the best. I never expected Tolkien to write a story as dark and tragic as the one portrayed in The Children of Hurin. First, a full disclosure that might anger Tolkien fanatics. During the time of writing this review, despite the fact that I’ve watched The Lord of the Rings trilogy more than ten times, I’m sorry to say that I wasn’t able to finish reading The Fellowship of the Rings because I was extremely bored with it. It’s most likely because the movie has tainted me with its fast pacing; I have no idea why but the book was so boring that it drowsed me to sleep several times, not even halfway. I blame Tom Bombadil, really. I also failed to finish The Silmarillion. Twice I almost made it halfway—the first time was more than ten years ago, the second time was just a few days ago—through the book, and twice I gave up. For the past few years, I have asked some fans of Tolkien whether it’s necessary to read (not watch) the main trilogy and The Silmarillion first or not before attempting the three Great Tales of Middle-Earth. Some answered as long that I’ve watched the movies and I have the basic knowledge from the first half of The Silmarillion or thorough Wikipedia research (which I did on both accounts), they should be enough. Some even said it’s better to not read The Silmarillion first to get the maximum surprise experience of going into the story as blind as possible. Of course, some weren’t keen—some even felt offended, only Morgoth knows why—on the idea that I’m reading The Silmarillion, or attempted this, without actually reading The Lord of the Rings first. Well, guess what? I’m going to offend them more. I finished The Children of Hurin without reading The Silmarillion or The Lord of the Rings trilogy first, and I totally loved it. I should note, though, that I’ve now finished reading The Silmarillion and The Lord of the Rings, and I enjoyed them both, but this review is written with the knowledge and experience when I haven’t read the two. Picture: The Land of Bow and Helm by Alan Lee With that knowledge in mind, until I do a reread, this review will be shorter and less detailed than my usual reviews; a lot of readers have done a better job than me in explaining the importance of The Children of Hurin and its connections to the larger story of Tolkien’s Middle-Earth. The Children of Hurin is one of the three Great Tales of Middle-Earth written by J.R.R. Tolkien and edited by Christopher Tolkien, the son of Tolkien. The Children of Hurin is a relatively short book. Excluding the preface, appendices, and glossary, the main story is only 200 pages long; what’s incredible and interesting, though, is how much depth, impact, and emotions are contained in it. Most of the storyline revolves around the curse bestowed upon the children of Hurin, specifically on the story of Turin Turambar that begins from his childhood. “A man that flies from his fear may find that he has only taken a short cut to meet it.” As I said, I knew close to nothing when I first read this book, and I think it’s the best way to enjoy it. All I did know was that the story was dark, but I never knew how tragic and brutal it gets. Although the beginning felt a bit rough, I still think the prose was able to grab my attention so much more than The Silmarillion did. Don’t get me wrong, the writing style does feel similar, but The Silmarillion felt too much like reading a bible. In my opinion, The Children of Hurin is more approachable, and I found the second half of the book to be full of engaging drama, an intensely gripping narrative, heartbreaking twists and turns, and it’s utterly unputdownable. Also, TúrinTurambar is one of the most memorable protagonists I’ve ever read. “False hopes are more dangerous than fears.” Lastly, I want to praise Alan Lee’s illustrations. The narrative itself already offered a mythical and distinct atmospheric experience, and Lee’s illustrations enhanced the immersion even further. They’re beautifully drawn, placed at the right moments, and it felt easy for me to feel like I was inside a dark tale of Middle-Earth when I was reading through this book. Picture: Glaurung by Alan Lee I have no idea whether finishing the ‘required’ reading would enhance or diminish my reading experience. But as far as my first reading goes, knowing nothing about the content has greatly worked in my favor. And I will have to say that I absolutely loved this book. The Children of Hurin is a superbly written tale. A fantastic, mythical, powerful, and atmospheric reading experience. For me, The Children of Hurin is one of Tolkien’s best books, and it’s certainly one of my favorite books now. I look forward to rereading it one day. You can order the book from: Blackwells (Free International shipping) You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions

  2. 4 out of 5

    Muhtasin

    The Children of Húrin by J.R.R. Tolkien That's a very impactful tragic story which was set in the extraordinary world (Middle-Earth) Tolkien had crafted!! But Tolkien's classic writing was difficult for me to grasp the story and for that, I had to take some time to understand the tale better. However, the more the story moves, the brutal it gets. And this book is much darker, more depressing, more painful than the 'Lord of the Ring'. A man that flies from his fear may find that he has only take The Children of Húrin by J.R.R. Tolkien That's a very impactful tragic story which was set in the extraordinary world (Middle-Earth) Tolkien had crafted!! But Tolkien's classic writing was difficult for me to grasp the story and for that, I had to take some time to understand the tale better. However, the more the story moves, the brutal it gets. And this book is much darker, more depressing, more painful than the 'Lord of the Ring'. A man that flies from his fear may find that he has only taken a short cut to meet it. Tragically beautiful.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sean Barrs

    The Children of Hurin is a tragic tale of love and loss, of remorseful earth-shattering revelations; consequently, it is also one of the most moving stories Tolkien ever devised. The execution never fully delivered it though, only because Tolkien never finished editing it. It just needs a little bit of polishing to remove a couple of tarnishes, and then it would be perfection. The Ancient Greeks understood exactly how to evoke sorrow, pity and despair all in one powerful moment within their play The Children of Hurin is a tragic tale of love and loss, of remorseful earth-shattering revelations; consequently, it is also one of the most moving stories Tolkien ever devised. The execution never fully delivered it though, only because Tolkien never finished editing it. It just needs a little bit of polishing to remove a couple of tarnishes, and then it would be perfection. The Ancient Greeks understood exactly how to evoke sorrow, pity and despair all in one powerful moment within their plays. And here Tolkien follows suit. The Children of Hurin could no longer live with themselves after what they discovered; it was enough to send the sanest of men mad. Tolkien captures all this within his narrative. The final scenes were majestic and terrible to behold, dramatic and memorable in their awesomeness. There’s no optimism here, this is dark and beautiful, easily the saddest thing Tolkien penned. The plot is so strong, and with swift final strokes the death blow of an ending is delivered eloquently and mercilessly. And, of course, an edition illustrated by Allan Lee helps to give Tolkien’s words even more life: “He was dark-haired as his mother, and promised to be like her in mood also; for he was not merry, and spoke little, though he learned to speak early and ever seemed older than his years. Túrin was slow to forget injustice or mockery; but the fire of his father was also in him, and he could be sudden and fierce. Yet he was quick to pity, and the hurts or sadness of living things might move him to tears.” That being said though, this, most certainly, has one of the worse opening chapters I’ve ever read in fiction. Tolkien goes into extreme depth about Hurin’s lineage with the microscopic lens that is appropriate only in The Sillmarillion. I was bombarded with names, so many names, that I was so confused. It seemed a very odd way to begin things considering Tolkien eventually pulls this story into a traditional narrative and loses this authoritative authorial tone he began the book with. Perhaps, again, this is because he never finished editing it. So I recommend pushing through those first few chapters because this does eventually begin to pull itself together. And it really begins with Turin, a young warrior cursed by Morgoth. The curse has come indirectly through his father’s lineage, from the man who once dared to oppose the original dark lord. He is haunted by black magic, his destiny shaped, leading to the tragic ending that befall the children of Hurin. Turin’s prideful nature sets it off somewhat so his destiny and own personality set him on the road to his marvellously grim ending, though Morgoth’s power is to blame: his revenge is realised. “The doom lies in yourself, not in your name.” “Then Morgoth stretching out his long arm towards Dor-lomin cursed Hurin and Morwen and their offspring, saying: 'Behold! The shadow of my thought shall lie upon them wherever they go, and my hate shall pursue them to the ends of the world.” The Children of Hurin lacks consistency. The tone changed and the writing was far too complex and loaded with history for it to be approachable; it was so unlike the mastery of tone in The Lord of the Rings. It lacked a certain sense of balance between storytelling and the insertion of history that makes the trilogy so grand. However, it is a vastly important work in the middle-earth cannon. On par with the brilliant Beren and Lúthien, Tolkien tells the tale of an equally as powerful, yet much more complex and conflicted (to say the least), romance. Not to be missed. ________________________________ You can connect with me on social media via My Linktree. __________________________________

  4. 5 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    ‭‭Narnichin Hurin: The Children of Húrin (Middle-Earth Universe), J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (Editor), Alan Lee (Illustrator) The Children of Húrin is an epic fantasy novel which forms the completion of a tale by J. R. R. Tolkien. He wrote the original version of the story in the late 1910's, revised it several times later, but did not complete it before his death in 1973. His son, Christopher Tolkien, edited the manuscripts to form a consistent narrative, and published it in 2007 as an ‭‭Narnichin Hurin: The Children of Húrin (Middle-Earth Universe), J.R.R. Tolkien, Christopher Tolkien (Editor), Alan Lee (Illustrator) The Children of Húrin is an epic fantasy novel which forms the completion of a tale by J. R. R. Tolkien. He wrote the original version of the story in the late 1910's, revised it several times later, but did not complete it before his death in 1973. His son, Christopher Tolkien, edited the manuscripts to form a consistent narrative, and published it in 2007 as an independent work. The book contains 33 illustrations by Alan Lee, eight of which are full-page and in color. عنوانهای چاپ شده در ایران: «فرزندان هورین»، «بچه های هورین»، نویسنده: جی.آر.آر تالکین؛ تاریخ نخستین خوانش: پانزدهم ماه آوریل سال2010میلادی عنوان: فرزندان هورین، به‌ پیوست حدیث تور و آمدن او به گوندولین؛ نویسنده: جی.آر.آر تالکین؛ مترجم: رضا علیزاده، ابراهیم تقوی؛ تهران، روزنه، سال1388؛ در432ص؛ چاپ سوم 1394؛ شابک9789643342920؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان بریتانیا - سده 21م عنوان: بچه های هورین؛ نویسنده: جی.آر.آر تالکین؛ مترجم: فرهاد سیدلو؛ تهران، پیام امروز، هستان، 1386، در256ص؛ شابک9789645706416؛ داستان در دوران نخست، و در سرزمین میانه می‌گذرد، و ماجرای «هورین تالیون» و فرزندان او (تورین تورامبار، و نیه‌ نور) را باز می‌گوید؛ داستان «تورین تورامبار»، حکایت اندوهباری از فرزندان «هورین» است؛ «هورین» پسر «گالدور»، از خاندان «هادور»، سومین خاندان از انسان‌ها بود، و این سه خاندان از یاوران «الف‌»ها بودند، که در جنگ علیه «مورگوت»، در دوران نخست شرکت می‌جستند؛ در نبرد بزرگ، و به راستی اشکبار «اشک‌های بی‌شمار»، «هورین» فرماندهی «اداین» را، در جنگ بر داشتند، که پس از شکست سپاه، و با رشادت‌های فراوان، به اسارت «مورگوت» درمی‌آید، و او را به چالش میکشد؛ «مورگوت» نیز او و خاندانش را نفرین می‌کند، و «هورین» را به بند میکشد، او میخواهد «هورین»، بتواند از بالای «تانگورودریم»، برج مخوف «مورگوت»، سرنوشت شوم فرزندان خود را بنگرد؛ «هورین» به مدت بیست و هشت سال، زندانی بود، و در این مدت، تباهی همسر و فرزندان، و زجر آن‌ها را، با چشمان «مورگوت» دید، و با گوش‌های او شنید؛ کتاب «فرزندان هورین» روایتی است، از ماجراهای زندگی خانواده «هورین»، با سرکردگی فرزند بزرگش، «تورین»، نامدار به «تورامبار»، یا ارباب سرنوشت، که چگونه با تقدیر شوم خود، دست و پنجه نرم می‌کند؛ باید این داستانها را با داستانهای مربوط به «هورین» در کتاب «سیلماریلیون» نیز مقایسه کنم تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 03/11/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 13/07/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jake

    It has been said that all good things must come to an end. In this case, the end of Children of Hurin also marks the end of my quest to read a book by each of my five favorite authors. It seems like a fitting way to end this journey, in that Tolkien is the oldest of my favorites, and if there was ever a modern author suited to end-of-quest tales, it was Tolkien. He was also the author on my list that gave me the greatest concern—not only has he passed away, but his body of published work is rela It has been said that all good things must come to an end. In this case, the end of Children of Hurin also marks the end of my quest to read a book by each of my five favorite authors. It seems like a fitting way to end this journey, in that Tolkien is the oldest of my favorites, and if there was ever a modern author suited to end-of-quest tales, it was Tolkien. He was also the author on my list that gave me the greatest concern—not only has he passed away, but his body of published work is relatively small. I didn’t want to re-read the Hobbit or Lord of the Rings, not because I don’t love them, but because I wanted to be able to read something new, just as I had with the other authors. Having read the Silmarillion several months earlier, I was hard pressed to think of what else to read. Sure, I could have gone for Letters From Father Christmas, or Farmer Giles of Ham, but neither of those somehow felt right. Tolkien’s tales of Middle-Earth were what cemented him as one of my favorite writers, and I wanted to go back to Middle-Earth as part of this project. Fortunately, the publishing gods smiled upon me, and gave me Children of Hurin. This is another in a line of books composed by Tolkien’s estate, taken from various notes, fragments, and other unfinished writings and molded into a coherent whole. In that respect, for the record, it’s very well done. The text flows seamlessly from chapter to chapter, and I never once had the sense that I was reading something out of place or inauthentic. This feels like Tolkien’s writing, and if it isn’t exactly what he intended, I have to believe it’s pretty damn close. But what of the story itself? The story of Hurin and his offspring is told as part of the Silmarillion, but not in the detail that Tolkien intended. Tolkien believed that this story was one that could be told apart from the Silmarillion as a whole—that it was strong enough and vibrant enough to stand on it’s own. And he is absolutely correct. Children of Hurin is an epic. It’s also a tragedy. If you come into this book expecting glorious battles and happy endings, you will be sorely disappointed (though if you come to Tolkien expecting nothing but happiness and light, I submit you haven’t read Tolkien very often or carefully). This is not a tale of good triumphing over evil, but a tale of a family brought down by an epic curse. More Macbeth than Star Wars, in other words. The writing itself is epic—Children of Hurin reads a lot like Beowulf or the Iliad. Tolkien apparently originally tried to write the tale as an actual epic poem, but was never quite able to make it work. Still, his prose captures that same spirit, rhythm, and cadence. As a huge fan of epic and epic poem, I love it. Despite the epic prose and tragic scope, the characters of Children of Hurin are very well crafted, and ultimately, very human. Their actions, while not always rational, are often understandable, and while the tragedy has its origins in the supernatural (it is Morgoth who curses the line of Hurin), there is not a strong sense that the plot is forced simply by supernatural means. Instead, we get the sense that these are perhaps well meaning, but ultimately deeply flawed people, who suffer for their choices, and the choices of others. The final scene of the book, when Hurin is finally reunited with his dying wife, is absolutely heartbreaking. There’s also a wonderful scene, much earlier, which really stuck with me, and I need to mention it here just because it’s so wonderfully crafted. It occurs shortly after Hurin’s capture by Morgoth, when Morwen, his wife, is trying to figure out what to do with herself and her children. Turin, the son, says something to the effect of “I know my father is dead. He must be, because I know that his love for us is so strong that if he were alive, no chains could hold him, and no amount of enemies could keep him from returning to us.” And Morwen’s answer is “I do not think either of those things is true, my son.” It’s a wonderful, if completely heartbreaking moment, where a child-like view of heroism clashes completely with the harsh realities of the world. It strikes me as a very Tolkien-esque moment; in many ways much of Tolkien’s work deals with the interplay between heroics, and the personal cost or realities of those heroics. At least, that’s my initial thought. In any case, it’s an immensely powerful scene. The text of the book is aided by the wonderful illustrations done by Alan Lee, who has done a lot of Tolkien-related art in the past. His illustrations are interspersed in no particular order throughout the book, but each one of them is gorgeous, and really adds to the flavor of the text. It would have been neat to see some more of them. This is yet another Tolkien book I’ll be re-reading in the future. It’s a fine addition to the Middle Earth canon.

  6. 5 out of 5

    James Trevino

    This book in one gif: I heard a lot of people say that Tolkien is the merry brother of George R.R. Martin. But anyone thinking that has clearly not read The Children of Hurin. To say that this story is tragic would be an understatement. This might be the saddest thing I’ve ever read. And I actually knew the story beforehand, because a shortened version of it is present in The Silmarillion. The book chronicles mostly the life of Turin, son of Hurin. The events take place after Morgoth, one of the Va This book in one gif: I heard a lot of people say that Tolkien is the merry brother of George R.R. Martin. But anyone thinking that has clearly not read The Children of Hurin. To say that this story is tragic would be an understatement. This might be the saddest thing I’ve ever read. And I actually knew the story beforehand, because a shortened version of it is present in The Silmarillion. The book chronicles mostly the life of Turin, son of Hurin. The events take place after Morgoth, one of the Valar (creators of the world) and the greatest dark lord of all times (basically the Lucifer of Middle-Earth) defeats the armies of men and elves and puts Beleriand (a land west of Middle-Earth) under his dominion. Hurin is taken prisoner and upon him and all his kin Morgoth lays a curse. Turin, his son, grows to be a great warrior, but his life is an unhappy one. This is closer to a Nordic mythological saga or a Greek tragedy than it is to The Lord of the Rings. But that doesn’t make it any less of a great story! We get a lot of insight into the times before LOTR and how all of that came to be. And elves are much more present here. The book also has some truly stunning illustrations by Alan Lee, like the one below. Plus a lot of thoughts and input on the story and its evolution by Christoper, the son of J.R.R. Tolkien. And he did a very good job bringing this tale together from his father’s drafts. Now, I got a few people asking in what order they should read Tolkien’s work and the truth is it might be hard for some to comprehend what is going on in The Children of Hurin without reading The Silmarillion first. Basically, in my opinion, if you have read nothing by Tolkien, I would say the order should be: - The Silmarillion - The Children of Hurin - The Hobbit - The Lord of the Rings Now if you want to get deeper into Tolkien’s work, there is a lot of other material out there. But these are his main works. And while some might struggle with Silmarillion, I suggest you push forward. The Silmarillion is basically an epic history of Middle-earth. It’s like reading Greek myths. I found it extremely fascinating, but not everyone thinks so apparently. The Children of Hurin is much more akin to LOTR and The Hobbit in terms of how it is written. So it might be more accessible to someone unfamiliar with Tolkien in that way. But it has a big ass backstory behind it. And while Cristopher tries to explain some events at the beginning of the book, it might get confusing to be faced with so many names and events so fast. That is why I recommend starting with The Silmarillion.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Lyn

    Gandolf, Poul Anderson, J.R.R. Tolkien, Tom Bombadil and Ozzy Osbourne sit in the Green Dragon pub in Murfreesboro Tennessee and discuss Tolkien’s book The Children of Hurin. Gandolf: Yes, Tom thank you, I will have some more of this delightful mead, what did you call it? Tom: Melkor Mead, and here (offers a sample glass) try some of our Meriodoc Barleywine, we make them both here at Green Dragon. Ozzy: Tahh, whassott faugh toouken majjes? Tom: Thanks, Ozzy! I’ll let the kitchen know you like the so Gandolf, Poul Anderson, J.R.R. Tolkien, Tom Bombadil and Ozzy Osbourne sit in the Green Dragon pub in Murfreesboro Tennessee and discuss Tolkien’s book The Children of Hurin. Gandolf: Yes, Tom thank you, I will have some more of this delightful mead, what did you call it? Tom: Melkor Mead, and here (offers a sample glass) try some of our Meriodoc Barleywine, we make them both here at Green Dragon. Ozzy: Tahh, whassott faugh toouken majjes? Tom: Thanks, Ozzy! I’ll let the kitchen know you like the soup. Poul how’re you doing with your beer, like another Shadowfax Shandy? Poul: I’m good for now, thanks Tom, so Ronald, it seems you’ve been published more after you passed than before… Tolkien: Oh, for goodness sakes, Poul, are you still jealous? Poul: Jealous? Me? Just because your prequel, trilogy and background works have outsold my life’s work many times over? Tolkien: Poul, Poul, you are a wonderful writer, I mean, I loved, loved! your book Two Hearts and Three Leopards … Poul: Three Hearts and Three Lions. Tolkien: Yes, whatever, but … Poul: I mean, Children of Hurin was not even a completed work, just thrown together by Christopher to make some coin. Ozzy: Aw wooght looos a con! Poul: Oh be quiet Prince of Darkness! Gandolf: Oh, I say, Poul, Children of Hurin is a fine work, magnificent work. Tom: Really more Silmarillion than Hobbit. Tolkien: True, this was actually one of my earliest conceptions, not just as a first age story from middle-earth but an early idea I had and came back to many times. Of course my experiences in the Great War would have a significant influence on how I formed the text. Poul: True, true, your world building is a great accomplishment. Turin’s tale is steeped in ancient myth and legend and you have, again, crafted a great work, I must admit. Tolkien: Well, thank you Paul … Poul: Poul. Tolkien: Poul, yes, whatever, but I mean, I WISH I could write a fantasy as good as yours. Poul: Do not patronize me, Ronald, OK so you’ve sold more books than me, fine! Ozzy: Feeegh moow, Rawoool!! Tom: You can say that again, Oz! Poul: Ok, ok, I give – Tom how about another craft beer. Tom: Yes sir, here you go try our Radagast Red Ale, you’ll love it, and make sure you all come in next Tuesday night, we’re having our Hobbits in Space night. (all stare at him) Tom: That was Lyn’s idea. Lyn: What?

  8. 5 out of 5

    Lilyyy

    ⋇⋆✦⋆⋇I have officially died of grief⋇⋆✦⋆⋇ “Then Morgoth stretching out his long arm toward Dor-lómin cursed Húrin and Morwen and their offspring, saying: ‘Behold! The shadow of my thought shall lie upon them wherever they go, and my hate shall pursue them to the ends of the world… Upon all whom you love my thought shall weigh as a cloud of Doom, and it shall bring them down into darkness and despair. Wherever they go, evil shall arise. Whenever they speak, their words shall bring ill counsel. Wha ⋇⋆✦⋆⋇I have officially died of grief⋇⋆✦⋆⋇ “Then Morgoth stretching out his long arm toward Dor-lómin cursed Húrin and Morwen and their offspring, saying: ‘Behold! The shadow of my thought shall lie upon them wherever they go, and my hate shall pursue them to the ends of the world… Upon all whom you love my thought shall weigh as a cloud of Doom, and it shall bring them down into darkness and despair. Wherever they go, evil shall arise. Whenever they speak, their words shall bring ill counsel. Whatsoever they do shall turn against them. They shall die without hope, cursing both life and death.” - J.R.R. Tolkien, The Children of Húrin This is going to be a long and passionate review (maybe sometimes bordering on ranting...) so please sit back and relax (if you can!). I really do hope this helps to ignite some curiosity toward Tolkien’s works at large, if not in particular with the First Age of Middle-earth, and give those of you who are already familiar with the Elder Days some new ideas to think about. The Children of Húrin is by far one of Tolkien’s darkest and most twisted tales. If one simply skims it or reads it without much thought, it may not even seem like much, but the more one pays attention, the more one realizes the anguish and the struggle within. While The Hobbit and even the first third or so of The Lord of the Rings is quite pleasant (at least in comparison with everything else), Tolkien’s “greater” works, especially The Silmarillion and The Children of Húrin have a vastly different style, one that hints that even while the written story is being told in glory and in eloquence, it is only a shadow of the "true" and complete tale. By the way, this is going to come off as really random, but for those who are familiar with The Lord of the Rings but not with anything from the Elder Days, did you know that Túrin (the MC of this book) was Elrond of Rivendell’s great uncle? Weird, huh? Also, Celeborn and Thranduil were closely related to King Thingol of Doriath (another character in the book) and Legolas may or may not have been inspired by an even greater elven bowman by the name of Beleg Cúthalion (who was close friends with Túrin). Anyway, I hope that piqued your interest a bit! The Children of Húrin tells the story of Túrin and his sister Nienor, who are, not surprisingly, Húrin’s two children. When Húrin was taken captive by Morgoth (the "Satan" of Middle-earth, basically), he defied him and Morgoth became angry and cursed his entire family. Unfortunately, the curse worked out quite well in the end, but I strongly believe that things didn’t go the way they went only because of the curse. Perhaps Morgoth's malice played a part in the decisions of the characters, but when it comes down to it, their decisions were still their own. Túrin was the tragic hero of the story (I like him much better in that role than say… Romeo… I don’t even know…) and his story is based loosely on pagan legends, particularly on a work called The Kaleva about a man named Kullervo. Most of Tolkien’s stories illustrate how while darkness seems to win, light will eventually still triumph and overcome the darkness. The Children of Húrin, however, is exactly the opposite. Sometimes Túrin thinks he has overcome his fate and escaped Morgoth’s shadow, but every single time, he is dragged down once more until Morgoth’s ultimate plan is finally achieved. On the surface, it seems like Túrin simply has horribly bad luck, but Tolkien may actually have something deeper going on here. In one passage, Túrin argued with Gwindor in Nargothrond’s court (p. 160-161), and Gwindor told him that they should all look to the Valar for help and wait for them to deliver them because Morgoth was much to strong for Elves and Men alone to defeat. Túrin immediately scoffed at this and said that the Valar had abandoned them all and that the only power they had to do with was Morgoth himself. He then went on to speak proudly of taking everything into his own hands and wanting his own way. This, in some ways, made me feel like it was almost like Túrin was, in a manner, denying God Himself and ultimately saying that God was dead and so everyone should be free to do whatsoever everyone pleased to do. And so if this theory is true, and it may well be since Tolkien was a devout Catholic, then The Children of Húrin is ultimately an illustration of the utter senselessness of life when God is not in the picture. Similarly, in The Silmarillion, even with all the glory and prowess of the Valinorian Elves, their war against Morgoth was (view spoiler)[ultimately an utter disaster without help from the Valar. (hide spoiler)] One more thing I have to say concerning The Children of Húrin in general is the lesson it has concerning pride. This message rang out the loudest above all others for me both times when I read the book. It is like Tolkien is telling us over and over and over again, "See how Túrin made this decision out of pride? See how Morwen made that decision because of pride? See how Niënor only did this because she was proud?" And so on and so forth. This was actually scary for me because I most definitely struggle with pride at times, and we can all sometimes be proud/arrogant/self-seeking. I'll give you some examples to illustrate this theme of pride throughout The Children of Húrin. Húrin was proud in believing that he could withstand Morgoth’s evil, but instead he ended up falling into despair and utter hopelessness (not described in this book but it is in The Silmarillion) and even gave the location to Gondolin on accident to Morgoth because of it. Morwen was also proud and refused to go to Doriath for years because she didn’t want to humble herself to ask Thingol for leave to stay there. She was also too proud to listen to basically everyone else’s counsel and just had to go her own way because she didn’t want to admit she was wrong about her previous stance. Her actions ended up with her two children (Túrin and Nienor) (view spoiler)[having incest with each other without either of them even knowing it (go read the book if you’re wondering how in the world that can happen!) (hide spoiler)] . Saeros was proud and arrogant because he was a councilor to King Thingol, and this pride got him killed eventually. And of course, Túrin himself hardened his heart and ignored fair counsel over and over again. When Beleg begged him to return to Doriath, Túrin refused because he didn’t want to even humble himself a little bit and seek out Thingol’s pardon. When he ended up in the fortress of Nargothrond, he wanted his own way in everything and ended up revealing the fortress’s location to Morgoth. This initiated the fall of Nargothrond. Túrin’s pride in particular (as well as the curse on him), hurt/killed a lot of the people around him (view spoiler)[as well as himself, eventually (hide spoiler)] . Even Morgoth, who bragged to Húrin that he had made the world in the beginning of time (which he did not) and called himself the “Elder King” (which he was not), was eventually cast from his throne and into the Doors of Night. I just thought this was interesting to note! Okay, now comes some thoughts I have about a few of the main characters (not all of them, just the ones I’m most fascinated about). Please note the from here on, what I have written, I haven't had a chance yet to proofread. Túrin - I loved Túrin’s childhood so very much, he was a sweet and curious boy even though he thought more than he talked. I loved the friendship he had with Labadal (awww, isn’t it so adorable he named him “Hop-a-foot”?) but I do strongly believe that Morwen and Húrin could’ve done a better job of raising the kid. Túrin barely ever even saw his father and his mother was often cold and distant and hard on Túrin as well. As he grew up, he gained more ambition and strongly wanted to make a difference in the world (by fighting against Morgoth’s troops). I enjoyed the first half of Túrin’s life more than the second half and that’s probably because the former is somewhat less depressing than the latter. I also found that I resonated deeply with him in the first half of the book (up through the fall of Nargothrond, actually). It’s a bit scary, but a lot of his thoughts are like my thoughts at times and even our personalities matched to some extent. I don’t feel like going into particular examples of this (the review is already too long) but I really, really hope my end will be different than poor Túrin’s was! See, this book made me think about myself as much as it did about others and our world. And if I blamed or put down Túrin’s actions earlier on during this review, it’s not because I think that he was an especially awful person or that I think none of us would have a similar thought process as he did but that all of us have a bit of “Túrin'' in us and I’m rebuking myself as well as him. Morwen - Morwen was proud, beautiful, and elegant, the very picture of a Lady of the Edain. However, at times she seemed like she was only hard on the outside to hide the softness on the inside. She seemed to be extremely afraid of being vulnerable (I’m not sure why unless it’s because she thought it was going to ruin her pride). It was really, really sad to see how broken and small she became in the end. Beleg - Beleg Cúthalion is my most favorite character in this book (and one of my favorites in all of The Silmarillion) by far!!! He was the captain of the march-wardens of Doriath and one of King Thingol’s most trusted subjects as well as a very good friend to Túrin (even when Túrin did a bad job of showing his love back). Beleg was literally so sweet and so wise and so selfless (and so tragic…), it just makes you want to be a better person just reading about him! And I’m so angry that he was only in like half of the book! That’s not even close to enough! I could talk forever about Beleg but probably no one wants to hear about it so… *sad face* Mablung - Mablung was a captain of the guard and the chief hunter of Doriath. I totally agree with Beleg’s title for him as the “friend of truth” above all others (including Túrin). This was referring to Mablung speaking of what he had seen in front of Thingol’s court for a trial. However, in the end, Mablung said that he loved Túrin and that “thus with words have I slain [him],” which was referencing back to Beleg’s title for him and him always speaking the truth. I don’t know what exactly that entailed but it gave me shivers. Melian - Queen Melian the Maia was, to put it simply, one of the lesser “gods” of Tolkien’s world but she took on a physical form permanently because of her love for Thingol. Melian’s counsel is always, always, always good but what frustrates me is that barely anyone listens to her! Not Túrin, not Morwen, not even Beleg! So I feel quite bad for her because she has foresight (meaning she knows at least in part of some of what is going to happen in the future) and although she can’t really force anyone into doing what is right, she still counsels them dutifully but they don’t listen!!! Which is so annoying! So annoying! Did I already say it was annoying? Gwindor - Awww I don’t even know what to say about Gwindor... Personally, I pitied him very much and his counsel almost always proved to be wiser than Túrin’s except everyone always listened to Túrin instead of him because Túrin was younger and stronger (so stupid!). And yet even though Gwindor had suffered for years and years at Morgoth’s hand and was shamed because of it after he escaped, he still endured and fought bravely and stood up for what he believed was right, which I found very admirable. I just wish his life could’ve been happier! I mean, the first part probably was, but all the rest was nearly all torment! Sorry if I ranted a bit with the characters! Ultimately, The Children of Húrin is a tale masterfully told as well as one that readers can go back to again and again and never tire of. I don’t think any of us will ever figure out how in the world Tolkien managed to make his characters and his world so real, so deep, and so beautiful, but he did and so we should most certainly seek to draw inspiration from all of it. This book won be for everyone and personally it took me multiple tries to get The Silmarillion down but it was more than worth it. So if you are thinking you want to give this book or any of the professor’s works a try, I would highly encourage that you do! Don’t be afraid, just do it! And if you have any questions about anything relating to Middle-earth (anything at all!), feel free to message me about it here and I will be more than happy to try to help you out. I'm always open to conversations for anyone with thoughts on this book or anything Tolkien-related. Namárië, nai aurelya nauva mára. ««Recommended for those who love...»» ☐ High fantasy ☐ The Lord of the Rings and/or The Silmarillion ☐ Epics and/or dragons ☐ Tragedies and tragic heroes ☐ Books that make them depressed?

  9. 5 out of 5

    Aldean

    As a general rule I try to write my reviews "in a vacuum" as much as possible, that is, before I read through the other reviews already here. I am not going to be able to do that here. I have spent more than twenty years with this story (since my mother first read the Unfinished Tales version aloud to me when I was eight years old), and if Christopher Tolkien had not put this volume together, I might have eventually had the hubris to do so myself. Let me start by making a couple of points. First As a general rule I try to write my reviews "in a vacuum" as much as possible, that is, before I read through the other reviews already here. I am not going to be able to do that here. I have spent more than twenty years with this story (since my mother first read the Unfinished Tales version aloud to me when I was eight years old), and if Christopher Tolkien had not put this volume together, I might have eventually had the hubris to do so myself. Let me start by making a couple of points. First: this is not a new book in any sense of the word, other than it is now standing on its own between two covers and without visible editorial apparatus for the first time. Second: Christopher Tolkien cannot be said to have written any portion of the narrative of this book, despite many reviewers intimations to the contrary. The bulk of this text appeared in Unfinished Tales, with significant gaps; Tolkien the son has filled in these gaps using the relevant sections from the (much more concise) version that was used in assembling The Silmarillion, as well as framing material at the beginning and end of the current volume, also from The Silmarillion. Christopher Tolkien has done little more here than the literary equivalent of very carefully stitching a few patches to mend the gaping holes in an otherwise noble and beautiful garment. On to the story itself, then. This is, as so many others have already noted with varying degrees of enthusiasm, a very dark tale. If you don't like very dark tales, well then, you will quite likely not like this. It is also in a prose style, as is the vast bulk of Tolkien's work, that is very susceptible to being called "stilted", because compared to contemporary prose, it is. But as at least one reviewer here has wisely noted the tone is in keeping with the tone of the Nordic sagas of which Tolkien was so fond of and inspired by. And like so many ancient sagas and myths, this tale is about an entire family haunted by a doom they cannot escape. Or is it? I think that Tolkien has done a wonderful job here of subverting the curse of Morgoth and the doom of Húrin and his kin with another motif: free will. Tolkien, who strenuously avoids almost any hint of allegory throughout his vast imaginative work, nevertheless imbued almost every corner of that world with reflections of his own deeply-held Catholic convictions and sensibilities. The core of the story is the tension between doom/fate on the one hand and free will on the other. Túrin makes decision after decision that invariably lead to tragic consequences. But does he do so because he is doomed to do so? Or because he is a man of haughty pride who stubbornly refuses to consider any viewpoint but his own, using his considerable gifts (natural charisma and rightfully-legendary physical/martial prowess) to charge willfully forward regardless of even foreseeable consequences to anyone and everyone around him? I believe that it is very much the latter, but without necessarily completely repudiating the former. The malice of such a being as Morgoth is a very real force in the tale of the Silmarils, and such malevolence bent upon a single family, and largely upon a single individual as Túrin rises to prominence, can be understood to have tangible effect on individuals and events. And even on a more mundane level, the incursions and aggressive actions of Morgoth's forces, both the marauding armies of Orcs and the Easterlings who occupy Túrin's childhood homeland, can be understood to push Túrin in a particular direction in his life that he might not have gone had circumstances in his life and in his world been otherwise. So there is some range to the senses in which Morgoth can be said to have cursed the children of Húrin. But Túrin has also grown up the proud child of a proud mother; effectively orphaned from the age of nine, he receives ostensibly every advantage, yet the pride instilled in him from the earliest age tragically unravels every opportunity he is presented with from his youthful fostering in the halls of Thingol onwards. It is his human choices, not the supernatural force of an evil will, that guide him on his tragic path, and this complex narrative thread is what makes this, to my mind, one of the greatest of all of Tolkien's tales.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alejandro

    One of Tolkien's best! GLAURUNG RULES! I know that the other villains of Middle-Earth like Sauron, Melkor, Smaug, Saruman, the Witch-King, etc... are far more popular and certainly more often commented as the favorite villain of Tolkien's fans,... ...BUT... ...in my humble, very personal case, I have to say that the dragon Glaurung won the top position for me in Middle-Earth villains, since he is not just evil, but malicious, since any decent Middle-Earth villain can kill and obliterate vill One of Tolkien's best! GLAURUNG RULES! I know that the other villains of Middle-Earth like Sauron, Melkor, Smaug, Saruman, the Witch-King, etc... are far more popular and certainly more often commented as the favorite villain of Tolkien's fans,... ...BUT... ...in my humble, very personal case, I have to say that the dragon Glaurung won the top position for me in Middle-Earth villains, since he is not just evil, but malicious, since any decent Middle-Earth villain can kill and obliterate villages, entire cities, but the things that the dragon Glaurung does with his magic (yes, it's a dragon who uses magic!)... uff!!! He's wicked, and also, not matter what, he will have the final word, and what things he says! TURIN AND NIENOR I think that this book, instead of being titled just The Children of Húrin, it should be called, The Tragedy of the Children of Húrin, because if you think that Aragorn, Frodo, Bilbo and others had it harsh on their own adventures... ha! pfft! You can (and will) gone mad if you'd have to face what those poor souls have to deal with. It's almost like Tolkien would have a morbid wish to see how much he can throw to them until break them, and the real awfful thing is that they are fictious character under control of the author, so they will suffer once and again, since they are pawns of the imagination of Tolkien. I can say that I hadn't suffer so much in a reading experience since the fifth book of Harry Potter. This Tolkien's book is certainly dark and not for the faint of heart. But certainly one of the Tolkien's book with the better prose and strong development.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Dahlia

    Instead of The Children or Húrin, this book should be entitled The story in which (view spoiler)[Everybody Dies (hide spoiler)] by J.R.R. Tolkien. Oh. My. God. And here I thought only Shakespeare wrote good Renaissance tragedies. Really. This story is so tragically sad I forget it was written by Tolkien. I won't write a summary for the story but I'll write down some things about it that might persuade you to read this amazing book: 1. Elves and more Elves! If you like wise, brave elves who like t Instead of The Children or Húrin, this book should be entitled The story in which (view spoiler)[Everybody Dies (hide spoiler)] by J.R.R. Tolkien. Oh. My. God. And here I thought only Shakespeare wrote good Renaissance tragedies. Really. This story is so tragically sad I forget it was written by Tolkien. I won't write a summary for the story but I'll write down some things about it that might persuade you to read this amazing book: 1. Elves and more Elves! If you like wise, brave elves who like to fight (a lot) and are good with a sword and a bow, read this! 2. Dragons! Evil, fire-breathing monsters that destroy everything in their path, kill half of the characters and torture the main character-check! 3. Revenge! Always a good reason to ruin your life. 4. Stubborn, flawed, cursed main (anti) hero! Who suffers a lot. 5. Middle-Earth! A nice little walk across the Middle Earth west of the Blue Mountains. 5. It's Tolkien, ok?! Do you need more reasons? Ok, ok. Here, maybe these nice pictures convince you to read this: source source

  12. 5 out of 5

    beggs

    The Children of Hurin is not a for people who saw the Lord of the Rings movies and then read the book. It's for hardcore fans. The people who remember all the names from the The Silmarillion. Or for the few people out there who reread Beowulf a lot. The Children of Hurin reads like a Nordic Saga. As a self proclaimed Tolkien Fanatic I enjoyed The Children or Hurin. The Heroic, epic and ultimately tragic life of Turin and his sisters. It's not more The Lord of the Rings but it continues to paint a The Children of Hurin is not a for people who saw the Lord of the Rings movies and then read the book. It's for hardcore fans. The people who remember all the names from the The Silmarillion. Or for the few people out there who reread Beowulf a lot. The Children of Hurin reads like a Nordic Saga. As a self proclaimed Tolkien Fanatic I enjoyed The Children or Hurin. The Heroic, epic and ultimately tragic life of Turin and his sisters. It's not more The Lord of the Rings but it continues to paint a more vivid tapestry for the Fellowships stories to play out against. There are a number or jarring transitions in the book. Evidence of the unfinished state Tolkien left the tale in. But this actually gives a more authentic feeling to the story. Like a recovered Saga or Epic that is missing a few passages. Hurin is high fantasy and if it were not set in the world of Tolkien's other stories it would be as unaccessible as the Kalevala. Even with it's grounding in the world of hobbits it is a book for the few not the many.

  13. 4 out of 5

    S. Zahler

    In the 1980s, I suggested more than a few times that all religious texts on planet Earth should be replaced by The Lord of Rings. J.R.R. Tolkien's best known epic (and The Hobbit) and the works of Robert E. Howard interested a twelve year-old Zahler in reading fiction and playing RPGs, two pursuits that profoundly impacted my life. Despite my fondness for Tolkien's mythic trilogy and its prequel, I found The Two Towers a bit of a chore when compared to the excellent first book and the emotional In the 1980s, I suggested more than a few times that all religious texts on planet Earth should be replaced by The Lord of Rings. J.R.R. Tolkien's best known epic (and The Hobbit) and the works of Robert E. Howard interested a twelve year-old Zahler in reading fiction and playing RPGs, two pursuits that profoundly impacted my life. Despite my fondness for Tolkien's mythic trilogy and its prequel, I found The Two Towers a bit of a chore when compared to the excellent first book and the emotional third part...and I was never able to make it through The Simarillion as a kid. Long have I associated this author with his well-known works and considered the door to Middle-earth closed. I've not read Tolkien in over thirty years, and I didn't know how much I would or wouldn't enjoy the posthumously published Middle-earth novel, The Children of Húrin. This book is excellent. Once I transcended the nigh unintelligible profusion of proper nouns that flooded the first three pages, I was transported to a deeply melancholic and incredibly rich otherworld. This novel has the mythic, fabular quality of Lord Dunsany and the heavy atmosphere of Clark Ashton Smith (my favorite fantasist), as well as the exotic names and dense history that Tolkien is known for creating. The story centers on a house cloven by war, an oppressive evil that threatens Humans and Elves, and the adventures, skirmishes, battles, relationships, intrigues, and tragedies that branch out from these dark events. The tale is deftly plotted, gorgeously painted with words, and very emotional. The scope of CoH covers several decades, and it has a rich philosophical depth akin to treasured fables, albeit told entirely underneath black clouds in a charcoal grey sky. "For a man that flies from his fear may find that he has only taken a short cut to meet it." Tolkien's book evinces plenty of worldly wisdom. It wouldn't be wrong to make both Shakespearean and biblical comparisons when discussing Tolkien's prose and dialogue, but the most important things to note are how remote, true, and consistent his writing feels. "A shadow is over you. When we meet again, may it be no darker." Who but Dunsany, Smith, and Howard aimed for and achieved such otherworldly authenticity? The Children of Húrin ranks very highly on my list of all-time favorite fantasy books, which includes: Zothique (Clark Ashton Smith), The Averoigne Chronicles (Clark Ashton Smith), Dreamquest of Unknown Kadath (H.P. Lovecraft), Tigana (Guy Gavriel Kay), The Lord of the Rings (J.R.R. Tolkien), A Song of Ice and Fire (George R.R. Martin), Sword of Welleran and Other Stories (Lord Dunsany), The Coming of Conan of Cimmeria (Robert E. Howard), The Savage Tales of Solomon Kane (Robert E. Howard), Magician: Apprentice/Master (Raymond E. Feist), The Pastel City (M. John Harrison), Throne of Bones (Brian McNaughton), Eye of Sounnu (Schuyler Hernstrom), Thune's Vision (Schuyler Hernstrom), At the Earth's Core (Edgar Rice Burroughs), The Sword of Rhiannon (Leigh Brackett), and Black Company (Glen Cook). Adventurers who seek the glories and sorrows of vanished times and rarely seen places are advised to visit The Children of Húrin. This smaller tale is less ambitious than Tolkien's better known works, but it lacks the flaws of those pieces and in some ways is larger in scope and more emotional.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Riku Sayuj

    After watching Hobbit, I desperately wanted to get some Tolkien fare, and I was (strangely enough) not up to reading LOTR for a thirteenth time (though I plan to soon enough). So I turned to the Children of Hurin and boy, was it fun. Deriving from the Finnish national epic Kalevala and the tragic Kullervo, The Children of Hurin proves again what Tolkien can do with ancient legends and myths. I have to confess that I was looking for parallels with Beowulf through most of my readings and found man After watching Hobbit, I desperately wanted to get some Tolkien fare, and I was (strangely enough) not up to reading LOTR for a thirteenth time (though I plan to soon enough). So I turned to the Children of Hurin and boy, was it fun. Deriving from the Finnish national epic Kalevala and the tragic Kullervo, The Children of Hurin proves again what Tolkien can do with ancient legends and myths. I have to confess that I was looking for parallels with Beowulf through most of my readings and found many, only to be informed later about the Finnish origins of the tale. Goes to show my ignorance as well as how easy it is to mix these things up. Tolkien infuses such grandeur into every story, taking them to almost mythic proportions, it is always thrilling and we just want more and more. It would be a pity if it takes another splendid movie to bring this book too into public spotlight.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lucia

    I can’t deny that Tolkien was master of his craft. However, this book missed the drive and compactness that his other books possessed and I didn’t like it as much as I hoped I would. Was it because this book consists of small parts (scenes) of bigger picture put together after Tolkien’s death by someone else than master himself? Most probably. Either way, this is a must-read for all true fans of Middle-earth!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Ivana Books Are Magic

    The Children of Hurin is a brilliant if a deeply tragic novel. It tells the story of the cursed Hurin's children. As the title indicates, Hurin's children are the protagonists of this novel, and the plot itself mostly follows his son Turin, who is the force setting most events in motion. At the start of the novel, Hurin is imprisoned by Morgoth, and thus his wife and children are forced to fend for themselves. Hurin's family members do find help with friends, but it is not an easy life for them. The Children of Hurin is a brilliant if a deeply tragic novel. It tells the story of the cursed Hurin's children. As the title indicates, Hurin's children are the protagonists of this novel, and the plot itself mostly follows his son Turin, who is the force setting most events in motion. At the start of the novel, Hurin is imprisoned by Morgoth, and thus his wife and children are forced to fend for themselves. Hurin's family members do find help with friends, but it is not an easy life for them. To make matters worse, Morgoth has placed a heavy course upon them, and if you have read The Silmarillion, you know that his curses are no figures of speech. Moreover, the readers of The Silmarillion will also know about the plot. From all of Tolkien's works set in this world, The Children of Hurin (not surprisingly) resembles the Simarillion the most, being in fact, a part of it. It is quite darker in tone than the LOTR thrilogy and the Hobbit. The Children of Hurin is more reminiscent of the tragic Scandinavian lore Tolkien was inspired by. In fact, this story quite resembles one of stories found in the Finnish epic poem Kalevala. Some parallels can also be drawn with Sigmund and the Volsunga saga. Fans of Tolkien probably know that he was partly inspired by European mythology, and being a scholar, we can assume that Tolkien's had an intimate knowledge of history. I've loved Tolkien's writing since I was a little girl, and I don't think that will ever change. However, my initial expectations for this book weren't sky high. Having read Silmarillion a couple of times, I thought that The Children of Hurin will not be that interesting because I already knew the plot. I was quite wrong. Despite the fact that I was already familiar with the story and the plot, I enjoyed it as much as any book by Tolkien, that is - immensely. Everything I've always admired about Tolkien's writing is there: the beautiful prose, the mind-blowing attention to details, the intense emotions, the epic quests. The protagonist of this book is Turin and he makes for quite a tragic hero: “He was dark-haired as his mother, and promised to be like her in mood also; for he was not merry, and spoke little, though he learned to speak early and ever seemed older than his years. Túrin was slow to forget injustice or mockery; but the fire of his father was also in him, and he could be sudden and fierce. Yet he was quick to pity, and the hurts or sadness of living things might move him to tears.” Among the other stories in Silmarillion, this one seems to me to be the saddest and the darkest one, with a heavy curse flying over its pages, filling every part of it with a sense of impending doom. Reading the longer version only highlighted that impression. In comparison with the shorter version, this book seems more personal, probably because there was more space to explore and portray the characters. Highly recommended, especially if you happen to be a fan of Tolkien.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Bradley

    I'm finally getting around to reading the Silmarillion side tales Tolkien worked on but never published in his lifetime, and I can say this for certain: This one is a lot smoother than Beren and Luthien. In fact, it just comes across as a collection of quite readable short stories following the line of Húrin from the First Age fighting Melkor in the north with its dragons, balrogs, and orcs action to the later days when all the grey elves were cut off from their folk and had to deal with the rise I'm finally getting around to reading the Silmarillion side tales Tolkien worked on but never published in his lifetime, and I can say this for certain: This one is a lot smoother than Beren and Luthien. In fact, it just comes across as a collection of quite readable short stories following the line of Húrin from the First Age fighting Melkor in the north with its dragons, balrogs, and orcs action to the later days when all the grey elves were cut off from their folk and had to deal with the rise of man. Primarily, however, we get a very character-oriented tale of misunderstood heroism and bullish pride and survival in hostile lands. A tale of falling from a great height, winding up lower than anyone else. :) Quite good. Fascinating. But I wouldn't really recommend this for anyone other than fans of LotR and the Silmarillion. It's quite readable, but the story might come off as ... something usual. :)

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sandi (Zorena)

    This a much darker tale than Lord of the Rings or the Hobbit. Curses, deceit and never ending woe seem to make up this tome. This being a reread I found that I was having a much easier time of keeping the characters names straight. His world and history building really helped me understand the two more popular books which I already love. I'm just sorry I didn't reread The Silmarillion first as it has the history for this book. Call George R.R. Martin a world builder if you like but I'm pretty su This a much darker tale than Lord of the Rings or the Hobbit. Curses, deceit and never ending woe seem to make up this tome. This being a reread I found that I was having a much easier time of keeping the characters names straight. His world and history building really helped me understand the two more popular books which I already love. I'm just sorry I didn't reread The Silmarillion first as it has the history for this book. Call George R.R. Martin a world builder if you like but I'm pretty sure he borrowed a lot of pages from Tolkien. Not only do I see the influence of Norse Sagas I also feel there are a few influences from Shakespeare and foremost comes to mind Romeo and Juliet. Turin and Nienor may not have been star crossed lovers but they were star crossed none the less. Glarung is far more evil then his Kindred Smaug. To enslave an entire people shows the cunning of this most wicked dragon. The mention of Sauron was a nice foreshadowing. I think Christopher did a fine job of putting this together from all his Father's notes and writings. I will say that I don't recommend this for anyone but Tolkien fans.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Ionson

    There's so much to say about Tolkien's mastery of language and myth. But what's important and powerful about CoH is that it stands (stylistically) somewhere in between Silmarillion and LotR. There are no anachronisms in Silmarillion, which are present in LotR (and the Hobbit, of course). CoH is blissfully free of them, but is also less "macro" than Sil. CoH treads on solid (Middle) earth, but is not quite as intimate as LotR (E.g., with Frodo & the other hobbits). This is such a grim tale and se There's so much to say about Tolkien's mastery of language and myth. But what's important and powerful about CoH is that it stands (stylistically) somewhere in between Silmarillion and LotR. There are no anachronisms in Silmarillion, which are present in LotR (and the Hobbit, of course). CoH is blissfully free of them, but is also less "macro" than Sil. CoH treads on solid (Middle) earth, but is not quite as intimate as LotR (E.g., with Frodo & the other hobbits). This is such a grim tale and setting, with such anguish and personal horror. This reveals Tolkien's darker view of mythology and the suffering we often endure.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Stefan Yates

    The Children of Hurin provides some great historical material to Tolkien's world of Middle-Earth and adds even more richness to the Lord of the Rings. This addition to Tolkien's extensive historical background of Middle-earth fills in the gaps and fleshes out stories that have been mentioned and hinted at in other works by giving us a detailed and colorful look at the tragic story surrounding Túrin and Niënor (Hurin's children) and the ongoing battle against Morgoth, the master of the Lord of th The Children of Hurin provides some great historical material to Tolkien's world of Middle-Earth and adds even more richness to the Lord of the Rings. This addition to Tolkien's extensive historical background of Middle-earth fills in the gaps and fleshes out stories that have been mentioned and hinted at in other works by giving us a detailed and colorful look at the tragic story surrounding Túrin and Niënor (Hurin's children) and the ongoing battle against Morgoth, the master of the Lord of the Rings' evil character, Sauron. This is a well-told tale with engaging characters and plenty of action that keeps the reader interested throughout. While not as enthralling as the Lord of the RIngs Trilogy, or as entertaining and wonderful as The Hobbit, The Children of Hurin is a worthy addition to the Middle-Earth cannon and is a more complete novel than most other source material that is out there. It stands on it's own well and one does not need to have read any of the other histories to follow along with what is going on here. Overall, a solid work that I'd recommend to fans of Tolkien's works or epic fantasy in general.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Joseph

    Now I will sing the doom song. This is probably the grimmest tale of Middle-earth, filled with treachery and betrayal and evil glamours and shocking revelations and all other manner of doom and tragedy. If you read The Silmarillion, you know the gist of the story. (If you didn't read The Silmarillion I'm not sure why you're reading this book in the first place.) This volume presents the tale of Túrin Turambar in a longer, more complete narrative (although it's still relatively short by modern sta Now I will sing the doom song. This is probably the grimmest tale of Middle-earth, filled with treachery and betrayal and evil glamours and shocking revelations and all other manner of doom and tragedy. If you read The Silmarillion, you know the gist of the story. (If you didn't read The Silmarillion I'm not sure why you're reading this book in the first place.) This volume presents the tale of Túrin Turambar in a longer, more complete narrative (although it's still relatively short by modern standards). Per the afterword by Christopher Tolkien, this isn't quite the same as the version he assembled for publication in Unfinished Tales of Númenor and Middle-Earth -- partly because he added in bridging text that he'd excluded from the Unfinished Tales version (because it essentially duplicated passages already found in The Silmarillion) and partially because he's had an additional quarter century to further decipher and analyze his father's papers. Stylistically, this is probably a little closer to The Silmarillion than to Lord of the Rings -- it has the same kind of formal prose that at times almost echoes the cadences of the King James Bible. Probably recommended only for completists or super-fans, of which I am unabashedly one.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Zitong Ren

    3.5 🌟 The Children of Hurin is a book set in Tolkien’s Middle-Earth(Arda) and is set in the a First Age which did mean that the war and all sorts of lore about Morgoth was fairly central to the story beyond it just being about Hurin’s kids. I absolutely love Tolkien’s work and consider The Lord of the Rings to be in my top 5 and it will probably remain there for a good long while, if not forever. That being said, I’m not the biggest Tolkien geek out there and there are so many of his books that I 3.5 🌟 The Children of Hurin is a book set in Tolkien’s Middle-Earth(Arda) and is set in the a First Age which did mean that the war and all sorts of lore about Morgoth was fairly central to the story beyond it just being about Hurin’s kids. I absolutely love Tolkien’s work and consider The Lord of the Rings to be in my top 5 and it will probably remain there for a good long while, if not forever. That being said, I’m not the biggest Tolkien geek out there and there are so many of his books that I have to read. Before this book, I had only read LotR, the Hobbit and the Silmarillion(which I loved). One of the main things as to why I am drawn to his books is mainly because of the world that he made as even today, with all of the new fantasy authors out there like Martin, Sanderson or Erikson, Middle Earth is still one of the most deeply explored worlds with so much lore, history and myths that would make any fantasy fan a happy person. This book is on a much smaller scale than many of his other works, the actual story is only a little over two hundred pages, which is not long at all. Another thing, the writing style is quite similar to that of the Silmarillion which was meant to be the ‘bible’ of Middle-Earth. That being said, I still throughly enjoyed it despite the fact that the writing style is much more like it is giving a history rather than telling a story compared to modern writers, if that makes any sense. One thing that I did really enjoy looking at was the artwork which was honestly so beautiful and accompanied the book extremely well(I’m always a sucker for artwork in my fantasy books). This book is actually a very sad and bittersweet tale though I did wish that the chapter name would not spoil was was about to happen as it ended up sort of ruining the story for a few pages at a time. 7/10

  23. 5 out of 5

    Eliza

    My brother gave this to me... so now I feel obligated to read it. Hopefully it's better than The Hobbit. My brother gave this to me... so now I feel obligated to read it. Hopefully it's better than The Hobbit.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Bibliomysterious BAM

    Another first-rate fantasy novel by Tolkien! Typical fantasy characters drawn from his races-elf, man, dwarf, orc. Disrespect, curses, doom, and war And a dragon It has all of the elements necessary for a classic, but I just couldn't connect. I am prejudiced I suppose. Nothing is The Lord of the Rings But if i take that out of the picture I must rate this story highly. After listening the second time I think my disconnect is with the Christopher Lee narration. His voice is so deep and he doesn't en Another first-rate fantasy novel by Tolkien! Typical fantasy characters drawn from his races-elf, man, dwarf, orc. Disrespect, curses, doom, and war And a dragon It has all of the elements necessary for a classic, but I just couldn't connect. I am prejudiced I suppose. Nothing is The Lord of the Rings But if i take that out of the picture I must rate this story highly. After listening the second time I think my disconnect is with the Christopher Lee narration. His voice is so deep and he doesn't enunciate well. I've had to repeat segments several times. If we're sticking with LotR narrators...you know who would have made this boss??? Cate Blanchett!!! I would love to listen to that Summer Fantasy Fest read #22

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jason Koivu

    Don't ask me to name any of the many gods, demons, peoples, and monsters that populated Tolkien's history book of his own fantasy world making. It's confusing and a second read will be necessary, but what I enjoyed were the tales. Following the heroic legends is like listening to a fireside tale told by a grandfather or an intriguing talk by a professor prone to long-windedness. You know it's good stuff and you wish you could stay awake during the endless narrative/lecture, but the old man will Don't ask me to name any of the many gods, demons, peoples, and monsters that populated Tolkien's history book of his own fantasy world making. It's confusing and a second read will be necessary, but what I enjoyed were the tales. Following the heroic legends is like listening to a fireside tale told by a grandfather or an intriguing talk by a professor prone to long-windedness. You know it's good stuff and you wish you could stay awake during the endless narrative/lecture, but the old man will drone on...

  26. 5 out of 5

    Trish

    This book is one of those telling a tale that JRR Tolkien never managed to finish and publish himself. His son, Christopher, instead took the manuscripts, edited and published them. I have to admit that I'm usually highly suspicious of such procedures as it sounds like heirs wanting to cash in on a dead relatives fame. Especially in case of Tolkien, it works, too. However, the tale of Túrin and all the other characters here - be it elves, men, dwarves or other creatures - worked splendidly for me. This book is one of those telling a tale that JRR Tolkien never managed to finish and publish himself. His son, Christopher, instead took the manuscripts, edited and published them. I have to admit that I'm usually highly suspicious of such procedures as it sounds like heirs wanting to cash in on a dead relatives fame. Especially in case of Tolkien, it works, too. However, the tale of Túrin and all the other characters here - be it elves, men, dwarves or other creatures - worked splendidly for me. The stories take place thousands of years before the events of LOTR and tell of the house of Húrin, his heirs and what happened to them. As such, we follow Túrin on his adventures with wild folk, see him defending himself when his honour becomes tarnished and much more. But we also see THE ancient evil, the original bad-guy: Melkor. And we see how the darkness spread by him tarnishes souls as much as blades and leads to death and ruin. The stories were engaging and filled with action. However, they were often also filled with stupid decisions made under the influence of too much pride. As such, they read like many a story about "noble knights" and the whole book sounded like a history book or an ancient Greek drama. I was therefore very pleasantly surprised and quite well entertained. It's not as epic as LOTR itself or as deeply mythological as Silmarillion, but it was really good. It certainly didn't hurt that my audio version was narrated by the marvellous Christopher Lee (of Saruman fame)!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Wayne Barrett

    The Children of Hurin is a story of renowned heroics in the history of Tolkien's, Middle Earth, but its heroism is eclipsed by the heartbreak and tragedy of it all. Originally published as part of The Silmarillion, J. R. R.'s son, Christopher, has given us the retelling of this particular story in greater detail. And for those who still associate Tolkiens name with children-like stories involving hobbits and elves, just know that Tolkien was penning dragons, dismemberment, and incest well before The Children of Hurin is a story of renowned heroics in the history of Tolkien's, Middle Earth, but its heroism is eclipsed by the heartbreak and tragedy of it all. Originally published as part of The Silmarillion, J. R. R.'s son, Christopher, has given us the retelling of this particular story in greater detail. And for those who still associate Tolkiens name with children-like stories involving hobbits and elves, just know that Tolkien was penning dragons, dismemberment, and incest well before the likes of Game of Thrones. Most book lovers have read the Hobbit, and because of the recent movie release, even non readers (the weak minded of our species) are familiar with the story. If you were awed by the fierce magnitude of Smaug, the Dragon, I will point out that Smaug was the offspring of Glaurung, who is probably the prominent villain in this tale. Raised and sent forth by Morgoth (the original master of Sauron) Glaurung encounters Turin, son of Hurin, and we have in detail one of the greater stories from the epic collection contained in The Silmarillion. As a stand alone book this would be a good story, though a little confusing without knowing the history referenced throughout the tale, but for a LOTR fan I would highly recommend The Children of Hurin.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Dylan

    “A man that flies from his fear may find that he has only taken a short cut to meet it.” “False hopes are more dangerous than fears.” Introduction Children of Hurin is one of the greatest tragedies ever written due to numerous factors. Firstly, the book is a literal Greek Tragedy. The story is mainly based on the legend of Kullervo, a character from the Finnish folklore poems known as Kalevala. Furthermore, having The Story of Sigurd as a significant influence in the development of the story. E “A man that flies from his fear may find that he has only taken a short cut to meet it.” “False hopes are more dangerous than fears.” Introduction Children of Hurin is one of the greatest tragedies ever written due to numerous factors. Firstly, the book is a literal Greek Tragedy. The story is mainly based on the legend of Kullervo, a character from the Finnish folklore poems known as Kalevala. Furthermore, having The Story of Sigurd as a significant influence in the development of the story. Even translating these great tales though obviously like most things Tolkien did it was left incomplete. It’s hard to explain CoH so currently, I won’t but one aspect is that prepare to shed some tears. Secondly because JRRT never really finished this novel, this according to CRRT ...it has seemed to me that there was a good case for presenting my father's long version of the legend of the Children of Húrin as an independent work, between its own covers, with a minimum of editorial presence, and above all in continuous narrative without gaps or interruptions, if this could be done without distortion or invention, despite the unfinished state in which he left parts of it." Ethan Gilsdorf, reviewing The Children of Húrin, wrote of the editorial function: Of almost equal interest is Christopher Tolkien's task editing his father's abandoned projects. In his appendix, he explains his editorial process this way: "While I have had to introduce bridging passages here and there in the piecing together of different drafts, there is no element of extraneous 'invention' of any kind, however slight." He was criticized for having monkeyed with his father's text when putting "The Silmarillion" together. This pre-emptive strike must be meant to allay the fears of Tolkien's most persnickety readers." There is one tale that completed in his life I’m pretty sure it is the Silmarillion version of Children of Hurin. Though a large JRRT gave himself the tale was too long for format of the Silmarillion. Regardless this novel is a compilation of the expanded writings that he never finished which most of them was is shown in Unfinished Tales and History of Middle Earth. Using the Silmarillion to fill the gaps which Tolkien did not finish in the expanded version of the tale. Thirdly its one of the greatest tragedies in fantasy history, this fantastic tale not being complete. However, its outstanding this release even exists in the first place. Huge props to CRRT for all have done for JRRT Legacy. Even in its state, you won’t be disappointed. Incomplete for Tolkien is complete for most authors. What Tolkien can do in 200-250 pages is what a lot of authors can barely even scratch with 1000. Anyways how I approached the novel is … read the Silmarillion till chapter 20 and then read this novel as a replacement for chapter 21. As it gives much-needed context and it works impact even more reading it blind and only reading the introduction (recap). This action I did not regret though the chapter titles do spoil MAJOR elements, this was a great story not knowing anything about it except reception regarding the Tragedy Aspect ( after CoH you can read chapter 22 onwards of the Silmarillion). Anyways I want to clarify you don’t really have to read the Silmarillion to enjoy this novel. Though I do recommend reading Hobbit and LOTR before consuming his other works which were published after his death. If the introduction the CRRT gives in the CoH is too confusing I would suggest minimally to view http://tolkien.slimy.com/essays/HurinBridge.html which is a decent bridging from LOTR to CoH and without being too intimidated. Though they other things I would recommend like at least view “ The Tale of Beren and Lúthien two video series by Men of the West “ as it’s the most important tale told in The Silmarillion and how it impacts the rest of the series in some way of form ( though obviously not super necessary you can just pick up CoH). Plot The Children of Húrin takes the reader back to a time long before The Lord of the Rings, in an area of Middle-earth that was to be drowned before Hobbits appeared, and when the great enemy was still the fallen Vala, Morgoth, and Sauron was only Morgoth's lieutenant. This heroic romance is the tale of the Man, Húrin, who dared to defy Morgoth, and his family's tragic destiny, as it follows his son Túrin Turambar's travels through the lost world of Beleriand... (The Tolkien Estate ) They some criticism where people are stating its “repetitive “I would fundamentally disagree. It's an adventure which takes Turin into various places and goes to an unexpected location and goes forth till the end. Writing The biggest preface in term of Tolkien writing style this is not LOTR nor Hobbit its fundamentally different. Though the funny aspect of Tolkien writing, he rarely writes nor tells the same stories twice. Just look at Hobbit, LOTR, Silmarillion, 3 Great Tales and so forth each time his writing always adapting depending on what tale he plans on telling. If they a specific word I would place upon it, I would call it Epic. It’s a 3rd person omniscient rather than the more modern approach which is 3rd person limited or 1st person. All of these styles have unique strengths like 3rd person limited or 1st person can get more involved in the minds of the characters. In terms of 3rd person limited an extremely good example would be ASOIAF. I think the biggest asset for this style ( 3rd person omniscient ) writing it makes seems it feels like it’s a legend being told. It's not just a tales of man but something grander. However, it’s not really like LOTR, because in that they so much detail like meme about the trees. The lack of detail is partly because this novel is utilising Silmarillion extractions to fill the gaps. But generally, you notice Tolkien writing style in later in his life it’s much more concise. I think Fall of Gondolin the last version is a good example in that regard. He didn’t want to delve into those kinds of details LOTR did, because they some things in this world you don’t want to know. This is the most chaotic grim and dark 1st age has ever been. He will show you briefly the brutality and consequence of Morgoth Rule, but they a certain restraint to it. Anyways I love how Tolkien write Turin character in this novel. In the Silmarillion, you can see more easily see which actions were done because of the curse or Turin actions. The Expanded version that line blurred between Morgoth Curse and Turin actions. Its features some of Tolkien most complex character writing. I liked how the viewpoint of this book because you have to interpret a lot from the characters actions. This evident from the beginning of his stay with Thingol and why he inevitably left without spoiling its quite unique. A Story of this kinda does work without hope that is extremely prominent. Turin actions and his personal identity slightly reminds of Guts from Berserk and his journey overcoming obstacles. Despite how grim they maybe they always underlying sort of hope. With so much sadness you would become desensitised so Tolkien smart balance in showcasing that hope while showing the sad reality of the situation. It’s a tale you expect never be written by Tolkien but in a sense when you think about Tolkien career, makes sense. He has seen the cruelty of humanity and some of that imagery is the feature here. In Wanderings of Hurin its perfectly illustrated (that another topic but I feel like it’s a great epilogue to this tale… wish CRRT included it in this novel). Funny enough I think people who have gripes with LOTR writing having too much detail, flowery … may find the writing style of CoH to more fitting. As its unique blend while being its own thing is, Silmarillion High Archaic language but also much more Granular so much easier to read and flows relatively smoothly. Maybe the first 2 chapters you struggle a bit (because of the names) but you get adjusted pretty quickly. Characters Turin Turin Son of Hurin is one of the best characters Tolkien has ever written. That's including some of the most complex characters featured in the LOTR. The Nuance, the depth the more you think about this man life, it does make you reflect. (view spoiler)[ Since he was a kid he endured severe loss with the passing of kid sister. How that sister plays a role in his life in many ways is tragic in a sense. That memory has always been at the forefront. Due to the battle of unnumbered tears, it fundamentally shifts the axis of his life. Finding Companionship and a home has been thing about Turin character. Because he lost in this world and he trying to make the best he can. But he also makes Idiotic decisions due to a certain pride. So much I talk about like the endearing relationship with Beleg and brotherhood these two men and elve had. Then later we meet Gwindor who comforted Turin at his lowest point. Accidentally killing his brother, but also his relationship with quite interesting. People in Nargothrond regarding Gwindor more the human and Turin more the elf. The love triangle kinda with Finduilas is interesting. How I interpreted the brief Nargothrond section, Turin deliberately didn’t want to think about Finduilas in a romantic sense because the life he endured and he sort of guilty even though out of his control, like his irrational brain saying that. I disagree with people in stating he did not love her, but only viewed her as a sister. They are definitely truth to that but much deeper than that. He in facts associates Níniel with Finduilas on some level due to finding her on her grave. The failure of his romance with Finduilas primed him for falling for Níniel. not 100% illustrated, but they some interpretation which is the strength writing style. I think its fair to assess that he was keeping his feelings bottled up. Turin convincing himself she like a sister, because he everyone he makes in contact with that personal to him, only leads them to a tragedic demise furthermore his friendship with Gwindor. They a lot more that can be said like Fellowship, he formed with bandits ( i think). It's evident they not good as they attempt to rape a woman which clearly illustrated they been successful in the past. He tried to protect Nargothrond but ultimately failed but had noble intentions. Finduilas death was probably some of the most tragic to read and reading that cross over in Fall of Gondolin from a different perspective even sadder. There Turin going back to his home town setting it ablaze just destroying his former home, because of his presence the more he attempts to help it backfires on him but he never lost hope until the end. His breaking point was the death of his sister and realising incestuously relationship they had which broke him. They only so much a man can take before calling it quits. Despite everything he maintained hope until … it happened sadly. (hide spoiler)] I love how you must judge Turin character by mannerisms and action as you rarely in his mind. Because it’s like an epic tale of old. Rest His Family also has its depth not just disposable but legitimate people living in this cruel world. Though their sections, Beleg and Mim ... ( content Tolkien meaning to fill he wasn't able to finish). Generally, the cast is pretty exceptional even Thingol has an arc of his own if you take his character from Tale of Beren and Luthien into account. How he became a changed man and wanted the best of people. Morwen though not featured prominently is a tragic mother who trying best in terms of handling this cruel situation. Then there Hurin the mightiest of men of them all. His battle was truly legendary. Flaws The flaws are quite evident which is this isn’t a complete tale though a lot of Turin story I think was complete like having a clear beginning, middle and end, but for Tolkien never about one character it's multiple. Originally CoH was supposed to be a 1000-page book? (don’t quote me on this). Aspects of the novel that didn't flow smoothly as Tolkien probably intended was probably Silmarillion extractions as he didn't finish large sections of the novel. Though I think it's seamless enough, that you won’t notice it because how invested you are into the story, but it is worth mentioning. Considering this is a bunch of drafts edited together by Chris, it's impressive how seamlessly large aspects are to create a smooth story, despite being ¼ of its original projected size. Stuff like the Nargothrond sections feels really incomplete or just rushed because of that as I don’t think Chris had enough source material or he would have to write it himself, but he would never do that as he an editor. The oddest flaw in this novel is the given chapter titles, Christopher should have changed it. Those featured seem like placeholder chapter names than legitimate titles, often spoiling vital components. Doesn't help it shows in the chapter list and top of the page the name. Lastly the epilogue this even unfinished reason I can give because the Wanderings of Hurin could easily be an epilogue for this tale. Like the Tale in HoME is completed enough combine from the CoH epilogue, Silmarillion and HoME extraction you can edit a complete version without really changing anything. I am not even joking because I even created an edit myself for my amusement because it was practically complete just needed to be restructured. Conclusion It’s hard to justify this novel being a 10 with its clear flaws. Simply put LOTR is a 10 because it went above and beyond, this did everything it intended but was close to beyond but ... was never finished. So, in good conscience, I cannot state this is 10, but it an incomplete masterpiece. One of the novels that have stuck with me long after reading it. 9.5/10

  29. 4 out of 5

    Markus

    Masterful stories. Masterful editing. Masterful introduction. Pure perfection, as always.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jewel

    I could’ve read this book in one sitting if I had the luxury of time. Like everything I’ve read of Tolkien so far (The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings), I found it engrossing and hard to put down. But don’t expect to have an experience similar to that of reading LOTR. Just as The Hobbit should not be compared in merit with LOTR, so shouldn’t this one, for though they come from the same world (Middle Earth), they’re entirely of different species (much like Elves, Dwarves and Men). I knew even before I could’ve read this book in one sitting if I had the luxury of time. Like everything I’ve read of Tolkien so far (The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings), I found it engrossing and hard to put down. But don’t expect to have an experience similar to that of reading LOTR. Just as The Hobbit should not be compared in merit with LOTR, so shouldn’t this one, for though they come from the same world (Middle Earth), they’re entirely of different species (much like Elves, Dwarves and Men). I knew even before I started Chapter One that this was not a book about hope. In LOTR, even in the bleakest moments in The Two Towers, there was hope for as long as Frodo lived. In this book however, the children of Hurin’s doom was ubiquitous and unrelenting. A sad, sad tale all throughout, but so much like a beautiful, melancholic song you like to torture yourself with just because it makes you feel fuzzy. I’ve read a few reviews of this book that found the narrative style lacking—dismissing it as too cold. The archaic-sounding prose might also be a problem for readers who are only used to modern fiction. The telling is indeed matter of fact and archaic, but I think since it makes the story read like folklore, it rightly serves its purpose. I kind of guessed at some of the events that would unfold in the tale, but not even that lessened my enjoyment of it. I would recommend this to anyone who likes tragedies and sad stories in general. You don’t have to have read the more popular works of Tolkien to appreciate this story in itself. Like I mentioned, the language (especially Tolkien’s made up one) could be a problem, but once you get used to the narrative style and all the weird-sounding names, you could end up really liking it.

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