Roving Ranger title image, first edition
Roving Ranger title image, first edition


a warm welcome to this, the second Roving Ranger newsletter!


MMORPG Lord of the Rings: Online is celebrating the ‘Great Wedding‘ right now, that is, the wedding of Arwen and Aragorn.

Middle-earth is gathering in Minas Tirith to celebrate the wedding of Arwen and Aragorn! Epic Volume V, Book 1: ‘A Time of Celebration’ begins with King Elessar in the Throne Room of Minas Tirith (Midsummer). Additionally, from now through July 20th, players can take part in celebratory Midsummer quests and instances to celebrate the wedding.

The Tolkien Seminar of the Tolkien Society (UK) has come and gone quite successfully and if you couldn’t listen in the videos habe been uploaded to the Society’s Youtube channel. You can find a full list of them with the Tolkien Collector’s Guide.

Please always refer to the International Tolkien Fellowship Facebook group for Tolkien-inspired events the world over.

Reviews and Book News

There is a most interesting hint at previously unpublished material to finally become available next year, edited by eminent Tolkien scholar Carl F. Hostetter: The Nature of Middle-earth. ‘Tolkien Collector’s Guide’ has the scoop.

When Andy Serkis recently did a live reading of The Hobbit for a good cause there were a few rumours here and there but nothing substantial. Now we know: Serkis has, in fact, done a reading for HarperCollins, to be published on Sept 17th.

Other Stuff

For those of you who have not heard of it there is the Marquette University J.R.R. Tolkien Fandom Oral History Collection.

In our effort to document Tolkien Fandom, the Department of Special Collections at Marquette’s Raynor Memorial Library is building a collection of brief testimonials from Tolkien fans.

If you feel like becoming one of those voices please check out their FAQ section. If you are interested in an example have a listen.

I have always wondered why the International Congress on Medieval Studies is hosted at Kalamazoo in Michigan (which has a very impressive Tolkien section every year, by the way!) and was recently reminded that there is a pizza joint named Bilbo’s. [Nota bene: This is a rather crusty joke. ;)]

I am not quite sure if I wanted to dine with them but they seem to know how to cook: Dunharrow Concepts.

Film franchise, merchandise and Amazon series

If you have not seen them yet, comedian Josh Gad has produced a number of online “reunions” of cast members of beloved films such as Ghostbusters, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off or Back to the Future, titled Reunited Apart. With every episode different registered charities were supported by sponsors for the show and online donations by the viewers. The most successful of these episodes was, unsurprisingly, the Lord of the Rings edition.

The Amazon series Lord of the Rings on Prime is one of the few productions in New Zealand which has been upgraded to a status where the production teams can fly in people, taking certain precautions, of course.

International workers for seven overseas productions have now been given permission to get past New Zealand’s almost-closed borders.

They are forecast to bring 3000 jobs, and $400 million into New Zealand and mean famous faces including Robert Downey Junior, Viggo Mortensen, and Oscar-winning director Peter Farrelly could soon be joining the likes of Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, and Jane Campion here.

In other news

Terry Pratchett who is known to have been a fan of J.R.R. Tolkien met Roald Dahl early during his career as a journalist. The Telegraph has the story. [Paywall.]

Tinyletter, the provider behind the newsletter you are reading right now, seems to have had a downtime of more than a day which even prompted the company’s Twitter account to come back to life again after a two years sleep. Also, many subscribers (at least you should be!) had their fun on Twitter.

The Blog Roll

These are blogs you really should be following if you’re interested in Tolkien …

Some of these, you may find, are not as active as one would hope; but even if they have not posted anything new for a long time they are repositories of great essays and research on all things Tolkienian and always worth your time. The blog roll – and this very newsletter! – has been inspired by Troels Forchammer’s Parma-kenta and his excellent Tolkien Transactions he did for seven years – they are still sorely missed!

Christina Scull and Wayne G. Hammond, ‘Too Many Books and Never Enough
Dimitra Fimi, ‘Dr. Dimitra Fimi
Jason Fisher, ‘Lingwë — Musings of a Fish
Douglas A. Anderson, ‘Tolkien and Fantasy’
John D. Rateliff — ‘Sacnoth’s Scriptorium
John Garth, ‘John Garth
David Bratman, ‘Kalimac’s Journal
Jenny Dolfen, ‘Jenny’s Sketchbook
Andrew Higgens, ‘Wotan’s Musings
Anna Smol, ‘A Single Leaf
Edmund Weiner, ‘Philoloblog
Robin Anne Reid, her blog
Annalisa Palmer, her blog
Various, The Mythopoeic Society
Various (Bradford Eden, ed.) Journal of Tolkien Research (JTR)
Various, The Tolkien Society (TS)
Southfarthing Mathom
Various, The Mythopoeic Society, ‘The Horn of Rohan Redux
Sue Bridgwater, ‘Skorn
Tom Hilman, ‘Alas, not me
Michael Martinez, ‘Middle-earth
Bruce Charlton, ‘Tolkien’s The Notion Club Papers
Various, ‘Middle-earth News
Jeffrey R. Hawboldt, ‘Expressions of Substance
Ryszard Viajante Derdzinski, ‘Tolknięty
Stephen C. Winter, ‘Wisdom from The Lord of the Rings
Troels Forchhammer, ‘Parma-kenta
Marcel Aubron-Bülles, ‘The Tolkienist
Jeremy Edmonds, ‘Tolkien Collector’s Guide

Art reproduced by kind permission.
Jenna Kass’ InPrnt. Námo/Mandos (top); Irmo/Lórien (bottom.)

Marcel R. Bülles

Marcel R. Bülles is the author of, a specialist blog centering on worldwide Tolkien fandom, geekdom and research. He works as a freelance translator, journalist and writer and is the founder of the German Tolkien Society as well as a co-founder to RingCon, Europe's formerly biggest fantasy film convention. You can find him in cafés all over the world sipping an espresso blogging, writing, reading. At one point he was married to an extremely lovely French lady by the nickname of Sauron. Yes, that Sauron. He is also active with the International Tolkien Fellowship on Facebook and the Tolkien Folk on Instagram.