Sun Media
March 28, 2001

Tolkien: Wizard of Words
Michael Coren

Let's be quite honest here. This is a blatant attempt to plug my new book, J.R.R. Tolkien: The Man Who Created The Lord of the Rings. Lavishly illustrated and not badly written, it's a steal at $27.95 from Stoddart, the best publishers in the country. Which is not to say you should steal a copy, because I have four children to feed and, frankly, I need the money.

Okay, shameless self-promotion completed. The point is, however, that Tolkien and his books are quite remarkable. So much so that The Lord of the Rings has been turned into three major movies, number one to be released this year. The very first day a brief video clip of the movie was placed on the official Web site, there were more than 1.7 million downloads. That was twice the number of the previous record, held by Star Wars: The Phantom Menace.

Last year various polls were taken to find the most popular writer of the century, and then of all time. Much to the frustration of the chattering classes, the author of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit won every one.

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