What is the Order of The Lord of the Ring
The Epic tales of The Lord of The Rings are a part of a collection of works by J. R. R. Tolkien set in Middle Earth. The best way to understand these books is to know what is the order of The Lord of The Ring Books.
Each book tells its own portion of the story although most people are only familiar with the first four or five books. There are numerous ways in which to learn additional history and tales of the characters and places of Middle Earth.
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So, What is the Order of The Lord Of The Rings Books?
The Hobbit Published 1937 Is the first tale of the series and introduces you to several main characters and places. It opens the doors to Middle Earth so that the remaining books can cast a greater light on the scene. I have done an in depth review of this book already. I have also taken a look at what is a hobbit.
The Fellowship of the Ring Published 1954 This is the second book of the collection. It takes place several years after The Hobbit and introduces several new characters in to play. This book is the start of the epic journey that will be told over the next couple of books.
The Two Towers Published 1954 The third book of the Lord of The Ring series, this tale continues the journey that was begun in the Fellowship of the Ring. Adding a few more creatures in to the diverse universe that is middle earth as well as telling more of the stories of the characters we have come to know and love.
The Return of The King Published 1955 Considered by many to be the end of the Lord of the Rings tale this is the fourth book in the series. However, there is more story on one of the characters that started it all.
Box Set Of The Hobbit, The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King is also available.
Bilbo’s Last Song(at the Grey Havens) Published 2002 Compiled by Pauline Baynes is the tale of our lovable Hobbit Bilbo as he sets out for the Undying Lands in his last journey and looking back at his first.
While you could call the Tale of The Lord of The Rings complete at this point you would be missing out on quite a lot of history and backstory. The tale of the one ring has been told in one small part however there is much more to tell about Middle Earth.
During John Ronald Reuel Tolkien’s life he accomplished many things. He served in the first World War, and was an accomplished professor until his retirement in 1959. He is most well-known however as the creator of Middle Earth and The Lord of The Rings. From the time he started working on the creation of Middle Earth in 1917 until his death September 2, 1973, he had a collection of notes and notebooks he journaled all his efforts in.
Upon his death his son Christopher Tolkien took up the challenge of getting the remaining works into the hands of adoring fans worldwide. At this point it became more difficult to know what is the order of The Lord of the Rings Books since the basic tale had been told.
The Silmarillion Published 1977 was the first of the books from the notes that Christopher published. Compiled from information kept in battered notebooks and published four years after J. R. R. Tolkien’s death this book tells the story of the creation of Middle Earth.
Morgoth’s Ring: The Legends of Aman Published 1993 is an accompanying text that helps to pull specific tales out and give them more detail from what is in The Silmarillion.
The War of The jewels: The Legends of Beleriand Published 1994 Is the second book to pull details and characters out of The Silmarillion and flesh them out in more form.
The Book of Lost Tales Published 1983 Middle Earth Volume 1
The Book of Lost Tales Part 2 Published 1984 Middle Earth Volume 2
The Lays of Beleriand Published 1985 Middle Earth Volume 3
The Shaping of Middle Earth Published 1987 Middle Earth Volume 4
The Lost Road and Other Writings Published 1987 Middle Earth Volume 5
The Return of the Shadow Published 1988 Middle Earth Volume 6
The Treason of Isengard Published 1989 Middle Earth Volume 7
The War of The Ring Published 1990 Middle Earth Volume 8
Sauron Defeated Published 1992 Middle Earth Volume 9
All the Middle Earth series are books comprised of notes and further details on the people and locations within Middle Earth that help to flesh out and give more background and future information on the events around Middle Earth. They can be more challenging reading as they are not written in traditional narrative style and rather feel more like a biography of sorts.
There are a few other books worth mentioning at this point.
Three books that are comprised of tales that take place several hundred years before the main story of The Lord of the Rings. While previously a part of the Silmarillion these tales have been pulled out and told in far more depth and detail.
The Children of Hurin Published April 2007
Beren and Luthien Published June 2017
The Fall of Gondolin Published Aug 2018
The Unfinished Tales of Numenor and Middle Earth Published 2012 Tell additional stories that had yet to be told of this wide and marvelous realm that Tolkien created.
The Story of Kullervo Published 2016 Compiled by Velyn Flieger tells the tale of an orphan with magical powers that is doomed and sold into slavery with a tragic destiny.
Tales from the Perilous Realm Published 2008 Alan Lee Compiles several short stories previously published as standalone works into one comprehensive volume. Farmer Giles of Ham, Leaf by Niggle, Smith of Wooten Major, Roverandom, and The Adventures of Tom Bombadil.
While these stories go along with the Lord of The Rings tales and setting they are their own adventures and need not be included in the collection in order to understand the full events of either set of stories. Which one is your favorite J.R.R. Tolkien Story? Please comment below even if you have never read a single page of his work.