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J.R.R. Tolkien’s final Middle-earth writings to be published in 2021

The Tolkien Estate has granted HarperCollins world rights to publish a previously unseen collection of writings by J.R.R. Tolkien. Presented for the first time in one volume, entitled The Nature of Middle-earth and edited by Carl F. Hostetter, they will transport readers back to the world of The Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales and The Lord of the Rings.

Chris Smith, Deputy Publishing Director, says: ‘It is well known that J.R.R. Tolkien published The Hobbit in 1937 and The Lord of the Rings in 1954–5. What may be less known is that he continued to write about Middle-earth in the decades that followed, right up until the years before his death in 1973.

‘For him, Middle-earth was part of an entire world to be explored, and the writings in The Nature of Middle-earth reveal the journeys that he took as he sought to better understand his unique creation. From sweeping themes as profound as Elvish immortality and reincarnation, and the Powers of the Valar, to the more earth-bound subjects of the lands and beasts of Númenor, the geography of the Rivers and Beacon-hills of Gondor, and even who had beards!

‘This new collection is a veritable treasure-trove offering readers a chance to peer over Professor Tolkien’s shoulder at the very moment of discovery: and on every page, Middle-earth is once again brought to extraordinary life.’

The Hobbit was first published in 1937 and The Lord of the Rings in 1954–5. Each has since gone on to become a beloved classic of literature, and an international bestseller in more than 70 languages, collectively selling more than 150,000,000 copies worldwide.

The Nature of Middle-earth will be available to purchase from all retailers on 2nd September 2021. It will be published simultaneously in North America by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and subsequently in translation around the world.