There's A New J.R.R. Tolkien Book On Sale

Beren and Lúthien has been published 100 years after the story was conceived

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Tolkien fans are in for a treat. A new book by the Lord of the Rings author is going on sale today, and this latest adventure into Middle Earth is a tale of love.

Published 100 years after it was first conceived, Beren and Lúthien has been described as a "very personal story" that was written by the Oxford university professor after he returned from the Battle of the Somme, the BBC reports.

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The book, which was edited by his son Christopher Tolkien, tells the fate of lovers Beren, a mortal man, and Lúthien, an immortal elf, which became part of The Silmarillion, a collection of the writer's works on the First Age of Middle Earth.

It features illustrations by Alan Lee, who won an Oscar for his work on Peter Jackson's film trilogy, and is being published by HarperCollins on the tenth anniversary of the last Middle-earth book, The Children of Húrin.

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According to Tolkien specialist John Garth, the author used his writing to escape the atrocity he witnessed in World War One.

"When he came back from the trenches, with trench fever, he spent the winter [of 1916-1917] convalescing," he told the BBC. "He'd lost two of his dearest friends on the Somme and you can imagine he must have been inside as much of a wreck as he was physically."

Garth explained how Tolkien was inspired by his wife Edith, who danced in a woodland filled with white flowers during a walk in East Yorkshire. This became an important scene in Beren and Lúthien.

These names are carved on the gravestone Tolkien and his wife share at a cemetery in Oxford.