cover image J.R.R. Tolkien

J.R.R. Tolkien

Alexandra Wallner, illus. by John Wallner. Holiday House, $17.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8234-1951-7

"Ronald led an ordinary life," writes Alexandra Wallner toward the end of this informative but often tedious account of author John Ronald Reuel Tolkien's life. It's a bit late for readers, who will already have meandered through rote descriptions of places Tolkien lived growing up, his schooling, romance, eventual marriage, and finally the creation of the stories that have endeared him to millions. John Wallner brings some life to the proceedings, using a game board as a metaphor for Tolkien's life (complete with "lose a turn" spaces and appearances by elves, dragons, wizards, and hobbits), but it's unlikely to be enough to hold readers' interest. Ages 6%E2%80%9310. (Aug.)