for Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit

Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit is now available at bookstores.


12.05.12 – Written by Professor Corey Olsen […] the publication provides critical analysis on the classic Tolkien. Among the issues that often go unnoticed are the numerous messages of the work songs that reveal much about the characters and the story and also the development of personality and radical transformation of life of Bilbo Baggins.

Above translation from Portuguese provided via Google Chrome.

11.07.2012 – For a man who can’t remember the first time he read J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy classic and who freely admits that he “was not, in some ways, a stereotypical “Tolkien-nerd” as a teenager”, Corey Olsen is probably the ideal man to pen a highly detailed, in-depth guide to The Hobbit.

The Plow Boy

11.06.2012 – When we finally reach the end of Olsen’s journey through The Hobbit we cannot help but feel that we’ve grown alongside Bilbo Baggins from Bag-End. […] Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit will equip you to become a better Tolkien reader in general, worth its weight in gold the moment you pick up The Lord of the Rings and so continue your long journey in Tolkien’s mythic world.

The Daily Beast

09.21.2012 – It’s the 75th anniversary of the publication of The Hobbit. Corey Olsen, author of the new book Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, tells us the history of how the story of Bilbo Baggins changed even after the book was published. Plus, see Tolkien’s beautiful illustrations for The Hobbit.

Read the excerpt from Professor Olsen’s book now!

Delmarva Town Crier

09.21.2012 – As the creator of the “Tolkien Professor” podcasts, Olsen is known for aiming his scholarly insights at a general audience. The same philosophy guides his book as he delves into Tolkien themes such as the nature of evil and its hopelessness, the mystery of divine providence and human choice, and, most of all the transformation in the life of the main character, Bilbo Baggins.

Deseret News

09.15.2012 – New release “Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit” by Corey Olsen takes an in-depth look at Tolkien’s classic novel. In his book, Olsen goes to great lengths to give readers insight into Tolkien’s characters and story development. He has written what many consider to be a companion volume, designed to help a general audience understand and appreciate Tolkien’s novel.

The Library Journal

09.01.2012 – A companion text to a well-known and -loved novel like The Hobbit requires a talented and qualified author. Olsen (English, Washington Coll.), who oversees the website, succeeds spectacularly by providing his readers with a thorough and detailed analysis of this classic. Insights into Tolkien’s writing and discussions of themes, ideas, characters, songs, and poems from the book are included (e.g., the evolution of Bilbo’s character, the hidden meanings in the songs of the elves, and how Tolkien wrote for young readers). The text is broken into sections that parallel chapters of The Hobbit and include subheadings briefly describing the themes and ideas to be discussed. In addition to the index, Olsen provides an informative introduction and options for further reading.

VERDICT: Olsen’s work is scholarly but friendly. His highly accessible writing on such a beloved classic will appeal to Tolkien fans at all academic levels, while the detailed and thoughtful analysis of the original text will keep literary scholars and fantasy lovers engaged.

Publishers Weekly

07.02.2012 – Olsen studies Tolkien’s work chapter by chapter, illuminating details of character and plot that might otherwise escape the reader; the various versions of the work in question and the reasons why Tolkien altered his work are likewise examined. A work of love backed up by professional experience….

Kirkus Reviews

06.26.2012 – Olsen […] reveals his affection for—obsession with?—Tolkien’s texts in numerous ways. He directly praises passages as “brilliantly executed” and “masterful,” but merely by giving this young people’s book the full attention of his scholarly skills, he imparts to it an elevated status….

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