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Eclectic Homeschool Online Book Lists - Lord of the Rings

This section of our website is devoted to book lists that you can take to your library. The lists are sorted by Category, Subcategory and then Topic.

Booklists Main Page > Language Arts

Lord of the Rings List

  • Celebrating Middle-Earth: The Lord of the Rings As a Defense of Western Civilization
    by John G. West (Editor)
    ISBN: 1587420120
    Celebrating Middle-earth is based on a series of speeches given at the "Celebrating Middle-earth" conference held at Seattle Pacific University in November of 2001. Six gifted Tolkien scholars describe the literary, moral, political and religious background to Tolkien's great epic.
  • Finding God in the Lord of the Rings
    by Kurt D. Bruner, Jim Ware
    ISBN: 0842355715
    Amazon.com
    There's more to Middle-earth than meets the eye, argue Kurt Bruner and Jim Ware in Finding God in The Lord of the Rings. J.R.R. Tolkien, a devout Christian, helped bring C.S. Lewis into the faith and met weekly with Lewis and Charles Williams at an Oxford pub for heated religious and literary discussions that informed The Lord of the Rings. Although Bruner and Ware avoid any simplistic claim that Tolkien's saga is "a covert allegory of the Gospel," the authors assert that the books have evangelistic power because they "can open the heart's back door when the front door is locked." Twenty-one short chapters describe various scenes and themes from Tolkien's work in order to illustrate truths of Christian life. For instance, Frodo and Sam's awareness that their adventures are part of a larger story "reflects the Christian understanding of providence, that we are all part of a story being written by the creator of all that is." Finding God successfully clarifies the ways that Tolkien's Christian worldview influenced the creation of his fantasy world, while respecting the artistic integrity of his achievement. --Michael Joseph Gross
  • Gospel According to Tolkien, The: Visions of the Kingdom in Middle-Earth
    by Ralph C. Wood
    ISBN: 0664226108
    Readers have repeatedly called The Lord of the Rings the most important book of our age--absorbing all 1500 of its pages with an almost fanatical interest and seeing the Peter Jackson movies in unprecedented numbers. Readers from ages 8 to 80 keep turning to Tolkien because here, in this magical kingdom, they are immersed in depth after depth of significance and meaning--perceiving the Hope that can be found amidst despair, the Charity that overcomes vengeance, and the Faith that springs from the strange power of weakness. The Gospel According to Tolkien examines biblical and Christian themes that are found in the works of J.R.R. Tolkien. Follow Ralph Wood as he takes us through the theological depths of Tolkien's literary legacy. Ralph C. Wood is University Professor of Theology and Literature of Baylor University.
  • J. R. R. Tolkien's Sanctifying Myth: Understanding Middle-Earth
    by Bradley J. Birzer, Joseph Pearce
    ISBN: 1882926846
    Peter Jackson’s film version of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and the accompanying proliferation of Rings-related paraphernalia, has once again brought the work of J. R. R. Tolkien to a popular audience. There are, however, few full and accessible treatments of the religious vision permeating Tolkien’s influential works. Bradley Birzer has remedied that with his fresh study, J. R. R. Tolkien’s Sanctifying Myth: Understanding Middle-earth. In it, Birzer explicates the religious symbolism and significance of Tolkien’s Middle-earth stories. More broadly, Birzer situates Tolkien within the Christian humanist tradition represented by Thomas More and T. S. Eliot, Dante and C. S. Lewis. He argues that through the genre of myth Tolkien is able to provide a sophisticated—and appealing—social and ethical worldview.
  • Lord of the Rings - The Fellowship of the Ring (DVD Widescreen Edition) (2001)

    ISBN: B00003CWT6
    VHS | VHS widescreen | VHS subtitled in Spanish | DVD Platinum Series Extended Edition | DVD Full Screen Edition | DVD with DTS Stereo
    Some of these editions have extra features. Follow the links to find the edition that fits your needs.
    Amazon.com Essential Video
    As the triumphant start of a trilogy, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring leaves you begging for more. By necessity, Peter Jackson's ambitious epic compresses J.R.R. Tolkien's classic The Lord of the Rings , but this robust adaptation maintains reverent allegiance to Tolkien's creation, instantly qualifying as one of the greatest fantasy films ever made. At 178 minutes, it's long enough to establish the myriad inhabitants of Middle-earth, the legendary Rings of Power, and the fellowship of hobbits, elves, dwarves, and humans--led by the wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen) and the brave hobbit Frodo (Elijah Wood)--who must battle terrifying forces of evil on their perilous journey to destroy the One Ring in the land of Mordor. Superbly paced, the film is both epic and intimate, offering astonishing special effects and production design while emphasizing the emotional intensity of Frodo's adventure. Ending on a perfect note of heroic loyalty and rich anticipation, this wondrous fantasy continues in The Two Towers (2002). --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to the Theatrical Release edition.
  • Lord of the Rings - The Motion Picture Trilogy (Special Extended DVD Edition) (2004)

    ISBN: B000654ZK0
    Amazon.com<
    The extended editions of Peter Jackson's The Lord of the Rings present the greatest trilogy in film history in the most ambitious sets in DVD history. In bringing J.R.R. Tolkien's nearly unfilmable work to the screen, Jackson benefited from extraordinary special effects, evocative New Zealand locales, and an exceptionally well-chosen cast, but most of all from his own adaptation with co-writers Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, preserving Tolkien's vision and often his very words, but also making logical changes to accommodate the medium of film. While purists complained about these changes and about characters and scenes left out of the films, the almost two additional hours of material in the extended editions (about 11 hours total) help appease them by delving more deeply into Tolkien's music, the characters, and loose ends that enrich the story, such as an explanation of the Faramir-Denethor relationship, and the appearance of the Mouth of Sauron at the gates of Mordor. In addition, the extended editions offer more bridge material between the films, further confirming that the trilogy is really one long film presented in three pieces (which is why it's the greatest trilogy ever--there's no weak link). The scene of Galadriel's gifts to the Fellowship added to the first film proves significant over the course of the story, while the new Faramir scene at the end of the second film helps set up the third and the new Saruman scene at the beginning of the third film helps conclude the plot of the second.

    To top it all off, the extended editions offer four discs per film: two for the longer movie, plus four commentary tracks and stupendous DTS 6.1 ES sound; and two for the bonus material, which covers just about everything from script creation to special effects. The argument was that fans would need both versions because the bonus material is completely different, but the features on the theatrical releases are so vastly inferior that the only reason a fan would need them would be if they wanted to watch the shorter versions they saw in theaters (the last of which, The Return of the King, merely won 12 Oscars). The LOTR extended editions without exception have set the DVD standard by providing a richer film experience that pulls the three films together and further embraces Tolkien's world, a reference-quality home theater experience, and generous, intelligent, and engrossing bonus features. --David Horiuchi
  • Lord of the Rings - The Return of the King (Platinum Series Special Extended Edition) DVD

    ISBN: B000634DCW
    VHS, DVD widescreen
    A new version of the final installment in the epic trilogy! The WINNER of 11 Academy Awards including BEST PICTURE is now 50 minutes longer! This extended version of the epic conclusion of "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy includes new score by Howard Shore and over 350 new digital effects shots. The once-great kingdom, watched over by a fading steward, has never been in more desperate need of its king. But can Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) answer the call of his heritage and become what he was born to be? In no small measure, the fate of Middle-earth rests on his broad shoulders.
  • Lord of the Rings - The Two Towers (Platinum Series Special Extended Edition) (2002) DVD

    ISBN: B00009TB5G
    VHS, VHS widescreen, VHS subtitled in Spanish, DVD widescreen, DVD widescreen with DTS Stereo, DVD
    Amazon.com
    The extended edition of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring was perhaps the most comprehensive DVD release to date, and its follow-up proves a similarly colossal achievement, with significant extra footage and a multitude of worthwhile bonus features. The extended version of The Two Towers adds 43 minutes to the theatrical version's 179-minute running time, and there are valuable additions to the film. Two new scenes might appease those who feel that the characterization of Faramir was the film's most egregious departure from the book, and fans will appreciate an appearance of the Huorns at Helm's Deep plus a nod to the absence of Tom Bombadil. Seeing a little more interplay between the gorgeous Eowyn and Aragorn is welcome, as is a grim introduction to Eomer and Theoden's son. And among the many other additions, there's an extended epilogue that might not have worked in the theater, but is more effective here in setting up The Return of the King. While the 30 minutes added to The Fellowship of the Ring felt just right in enriching the film, the extra footage in The Two Towers at times seems a bit extraneous--we see moments that in the theatrical version we had been told about, and some fleshed-out conversations and incidents are rather minor. But director Peter Jackson's vision of J.R.R. Tolkien's world is so marvelous that it's hard to complain about any extra time we can spend there.

    While it may seem that there would be nothing left to say after the bevy of features on the extended Fellowship, the four commentary tracks and two discs of supplements on The Two Towers remain informative, fascinating, and funny, far surpassing the recycled materials on the two-disc theatrical version. Highlights of the 6.5 hours' worth of documentaries offer insight on the stunts, the design work, the locations, and the creation of Gollum, and--most intriguing for rabid fans--the film's writers (including Jackson) discuss why they created events that weren't in the book. Providing variety are animatics, rough footage, countless sketches, and a sound-mixing demonstration. Again, the most interesting commentary tracks are by Jackson and writers Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens and by 16 members of the cast (eight of whom didn't appear in the first film, and even including John Noble, whose Denethor character only appears in this extended cut). The first two installments of Peter Jackson's trilogy have established themselves as the best fantasy films of all time, and among the best film trilogies of all time, and their extended-edition DVD sets have set a new standard for expanding on the already-epic films and providing comprehensive bonus features. --David Horiuchi
  • Tolkien's Ordinary Virtues : Exploring the Spiritual Themes of the Lord of the Rings
    by Mark Eddy Smith
    ISBN: 0830823123
    "I read Tolkien's Ordinary Virtues for my own edification, but I can easily see it being a benefit in the homeschool. There are many unit studies out there that teach virtues ? godly characteristics we wish to instill in our own children ? but most are for the younger child. I envision this book being used in a study geared toward older children?even 'children' as old as myself. Whether it were read independently by the junior high or high school student, read aloud and discussed as a family, or referred to by the homeschooling parent during lesson planning, it couldbe a great benefit. Choose the characteristic you wish to study, turn to that chapter, and dive in. Unlike the deeply theological book I had anticipated, this is one you will have no trouble understanding and, more importantly, using." Tammy M. Cardwell
  • Walking With Frodo: A Devotional Journey Through the Lord of the Rings
    by Sarah Arthur
    ISBN: 0842385541
    Tolkien's Lord of the Rings epic tale has long captivated readers with its parallels to biblical truth. And now, a new addition to the thirsty(?) line, Walking with Frodo looks at the biblical themes found in the classic Lord of the Rings trilogy. The 18 devotions pair vices and virtues (deception vs. honesty, light vs. darkness, good vs. evil) displayed by characters in The Lord of the Rings and bring to light what the Bible has to say. A must-have for longtime and new series fans.
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