Harper Collins have celebrated the 40th anniversary of Unfinished Tales by J.R.R Tolkien with a stunning illustrated edition of this fantasy classic. Featuring 18 breath-taking full colour works of art by Alan Lee, Ted Nasmith and Arena Illustrator John Howe, this special edition takes readers further into the stories told in The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion, depicting scenes from the First, Second and Third Ages of Middle-earth.


Unfinished Tales is a collection of narratives ranging in time from the Elder Days of Middle-earth to the end of the War of the Ring and provides those who have read The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings with a whole collection of background and new stories. An absolute must-have for fans of Tolkien and fantasy fiction.

The book concentrates on the realm of Middle-earth and comprises such elements as The Quest of Erebor, Gandalf’s lively account of how it was that he came to send the Dwarves to the celebrated party at Bag-End; the emergence of the sea-god Ulmo before the eyes of Tuor on the coast of Beleriand; and an exact description of the military organization of the Riders of Rohan.

Unfinished Tales also contains the only story about the long ages of Númenor before its downfall and all that is known about such matters as the Five Wizards, the Palantíri and the legend of Amroth. The tales were edited by Christopher Tolkien, who provides a short commentary on each story, helping the reader to fill in the gaps and put each story into the context of the rest of his father’s writings.

Click HERE to buy your very own copy of this magnificent book.

You can view John Howe’s full online portfolio HERE and for more information regarding working with John Howe please email info@arenaillustration.com



Alan Lee, John Howe and Ted Nasmith gathered virtually for Waterstones to discuss their work illustrating Tolkien’s Unfinished Tales, The webinar was hosted by Waterstones on the 1st of October 2020 with the writer Brian Sibley acting as chair. A fascinating watch for fans of Middle Earth. John talks in detail about this illustration of the Black Rider set in a New Zealand landscape inspired by the Three Sisters Beach.