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I wonder at times why this collection of three stories, Leaf by Niggle, Farmer Ham of Giles and Smith of Major Wooten are not talked about. They are each rare and perfect faceted diamonds, each story showing a different side of Professor Tolkien. Farmer Ham of Giles seems based on real medieval history and is a brilliant account of the way small fifedoms came in to being. It shows the inconsistancy of man and how a man's loyalty in a village could be bought and sold for the most part. it also showed what hard working townsfolk thought of ignorant giants that walked across their lands, ate their cattle and neighbors and how even a king cannot force an army that is not paid on time to do what they are bid. It deals with the lies of dragons and the wit of a simple farmer in besting the dragon. Brilliant. Leaf by niggle shows how we each have something to accomplish in this too brief life, how it matters how we treat our neighbor and how we cannot become who we really are without some sort of human help. It made me uncomfortable and grateful for my life and determined not to let any minute just fly by without my doing something about it. I was in a library when I first read Smith of Major Wooten and the wonder and faerie brilliance of the story so swept me away I no longer was in this world . When I came to myself there at that table I became aware I was weeping. To me that story , other than UnFinished Tales and Silmarillion are the most wondrous of all the canon of Tolkien.
I must admit Leelee, I haven't read either of these. You have awoken my curious side with your words. I think I'll need to go out and find them now.

Wow, I've never read these either. Now I need to! Where could I ever find them? Hmm... yet another book search.

It seems to me there are always one or two copies lurking around at your local bookstore. I think it might be fairly easy to order The Perilous Realm.

I've read these a long time ago, they came out before the Silmarillion, and in those days I got hold of anything by   JRRT wasn't much then. Though as usual I've lost my copy. - wasn't called the Perilous Realm then, it was Farmer Giles of Ham. Must get a new copy.

Gwindor, hullo! How wonderful to 'see' you once more. i could not be more pleased if it was Galadriel or Aragorn or Frodo who showed up. I hope you are happy and well.

The strange thing here is although often you cannot get a copy of one or other of Tolkien's books at the bookstores without ordering them, you can walk into one of the local supermarket chains, one store in particular and while getting your food  you can simply walk over to one of a couple of huge wooden bins and behold , various copies of the books, always nearly half off the original prices. And the ones they offer are often rare ones. My daughter bought The Hobbit and inside the box was a large map and a CD of Tolkien himself reading the meeting and sparring of Bilbo Baggins and Smeagal. Tolkien's own rendering of that frightened me so much i quit listening half way through and have never resumed it. He obviously took great delight in doing the voice of Gollum in a hideous truly frightening way. Marvellous.

Leelee,  its always good to hear from you. If I'm not happy and well, I soon recover after coming on PT.

I've recently bought a new copy of the Hobbit, the one with the Alan Lee illustrations. Makes reading it again even better.