Book Review: LETTERS FROM FATHER CHRISTMAS

PrintE-mail Written by Julian White

Letters from Father Christmas Review

Review: Letters from Father Christmas / Author: J R R Tolkien / Publisher: HarperCollins / Release Date: September 27th

You'll all be familiar with the way you can buy a kid a present and he'll end up playing with the wrapping paper instead. One suspects it must have been a bit like that with Tolkien's Father Christmas letters, which he wrote for his children over a period of more than 20 years - because the best parts are definitely the envelopes.

The reproductions in this book show just how stunning these are, with their coloured lettering, hand-drawn franking marks and hand-painted North Pole postage stamps. The stamps, in particular, are miniature works of art, sometimes painted directly onto the envelope, sometimes stuck on, complete with carefully serrated edges – a philatelist's dream.

The second best parts are the illustrations accompanying the letters, with their elegant yet child-friendly designs and glowing colours, now looking better than ever in this revised edition. The letters themselves rank a lowly third in interest. In theory, they show Tolkien's imagination working organically as, over the years, he expands Santa's set-up, giving him a maladroit helper in the form of Polar Bear, then an elvish scribe to shoulder some of his paperwork and various other background characters, plus some evil gnomes to put his fur-trimmed boot into. But in practice there's a sameyness to Tolkien's jokes about gluttony and bone-breaking pratfalls which soon grows wearisome if you read more than a few missives at a time. Still, Tolkien fans might well want this smart new edition for their Christmas stockings.

alt


Suggested Articles:
How can you write a story from a “what if?”. . . Thought X sets out to answer this question in
With the way the Caped Crusader has been serviced of late, a certain element of fandom has returned
You just can’t keep a good gang of villains down. Secondary only to Judge Death and the Dark Judge
When it comes to the Art of book, Disney has been the gold standard in recent years (especially sinc
scroll back to top

Add comment

Security code
Refresh

Other articles in Book Reviews

AN A-Z OF CUMBRIA AND THE LAKE DISTRICT ON FILM 29 November 2016

THOUGHT X: FICTIONS AND HYPOTHETICALS 29 November 2016

BATMAN: A CELEBRATION OF THE CLASSIC TV SERIES 25 November 2016

FINK ANGEL: LEGACY 22 November 2016

THE ART OF MOANA 22 November 2016

RUNEMARKS 21 November 2016

CLASS: THE STONE HOUSE 21 November 2016

CLASS: JOYRIDE 16 November 2016

STAR WARS – GALACTIC ATLAS 14 November 2016

SOFT CITY 12 November 2016

- Entire Category -

Sign up today!
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner

      
      
 
...