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Another great Tolkien read
"As a lord was held for the strength of his body and stoutness of heart. Much lore he learned, and loved wisdom but fortune followed him in few desires; oft wrong and awry what he wrought turned; what he loved he lost, what he longed for he won not; and full friendship he found not easily, nor was lightly loved for his looks were sad. He was gloom-hearted, and glad seldom for the sundering sorrow that filled his youth...” On Turin Turambar - The Children of Hurin.
Written by J.R.R Tolkien and edited by his son Christopher Tolkien, The Children of Hurin is a fantasy novel that takes place long before The Lord of the Ring books, but in the same world. This tale starts by giving a long account of a King named Hurin who assembles the races of Elves and Man to go war against the Dark Lord, Morgoth, and his army of Orcs. Morgoth is ever increasingly invading their world. The good are standing up against evil to keep their families safe. Hurin leaves behind his pregnant wife, Morwen, and his eight year old boy, Turin, when he goes to war. The Elves and Men are defeated and nearly destroyed. Hurin is taken prisoner and is asked to yield to the Dark Lord. He defies Morgoth, and in return, Morgoth curses Hurin and his family. The story resumes with the accounts of what happens to Turin’s wife and two children. The children become very noble and strong, but the curse upon them always leads them into bitter obstacles.
Tolkien does a great job in capturing his audience, but it takes a long time for the book to become gripping. He uses his own style and language that makes you feel like you are reading from the browned pages of a two-hundred year old book covered in dust. The dialect is hard to read. He uses names that sound too much alike which can become confusing. The dialect, however, is used to take you back in time which gives the story an historic feel.
The Children of Hurin is not as great and famous as The Lord of the Rings, but the feel of the story is similar enough that you can tell it is written by Tolkien. It took a long time to get to the main part of the story, so patience is needed. Overall, it is a difficult but enjoyable book to read.