I didn’t even know this book existed until my friend loaned it to me. I’ve avoided most of the “releases” from JRR Tolkien’s son, Christopher, since reading the Silarillion years ago. That book was lame and spelled out why Tolkien never released it why alive. It was a sort of “Bible” for the Middle Earth realm, but not really a great read in itself, so only of interest to real nerdy types.
This book, however, surpasses that crap legacy and is a great read all by itself, Tolkien fan or not. In fact, if you’re a hardcore, read the trilogy five times a year fan, you’ll probably hate this book. Mostly because it’s not like the Lord of the Rings – or even the Hobbit, for that matter.
It’s a tragedy, not really a story of true heroism like the other books. It’s closer to Greek tragedies like Homer. REALLY awesome, though. I very much recommend that you read this book.
The story itself is alluded to in the LoTR series, though at that time it is “ancient history” for the humans. The story of Elrond and Gondolin is more thoroughly fleshed out (as this happens during the beginning, when Turgon was Elven King). Mostly, though, the story focuses on Turin, son of Hurin, a great hero for the Elves and Humans at the time.
Get this book, read it, and enjoy! I guarantee that unless you’re some kind of illiterate or a hardcore Tolkien nerd, you’ll love this one.