Simon Tolkien

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Simon Mario Reuel Tolkien (born 12 January 1959) is a British barrister and novelist. He is the grandson of J. R. R. Tolkien, and the eldest son of Christopher Tolkien. He was educated at the Dragon School in Oxford and then Downside School. He studied modern history at Trinity College, Oxford, after which he embarked on a fifteen-year career as a criminal lawyer.[1]

He was a barrister in London from 1994, where he lived with his wife and their two children.[citation needed] He turned his hand to writing at the age of forty.[1] His first novel, The Stepmother[2] (published as Final Witness in the United States [3]), was published in 2002. His second work, The Inheritance (the first of a trilogy featuring Inspector Trave of the Oxfordshire Criminal Investigation Department), was published in 2010. Additional novels have since appeared.

Simon Tolkien notably disagreed with the policy of his grandfather's estate in regard to the The Lord of the Rings films. When Christopher Tolkien issued a statement that the "Tolkien estate would be best advised to avoid any specific association with the films",[4] Simon Tolkien broke ranks, offering to cooperate with the filmmakers, stating "It was my view that we take a much more positive line on the film and that was overruled by my father."[5] Following up a 2001 interview with the Independent, Simon in 2003 gave interviews to the Daily Telegraph and other media in which he discussed his strained relationship with his father, describing it as a permanent breach.[6] However, they have since reconciled.[1]

Simon Tolkien currently lives in southern California with his wife Tracy.[1]


Inspector Trave novels[edit]

  • Orders from Berlin (set in 1940) (2012)
  • The King of Diamonds (set in 1958) (2011)
  • The Inheritance (set in 1959) (2010)

Other works[edit]

  • The Stepmother (2002)


  1. ^ a b c d Hough, Andrew (2012-11-18). "Simon Tolkien: J R R Tolkien's grandson admits Lord of the Rings trauma". Sunday Telegraph. Retrieved 2012-12-15. 
  2. ^ "Simon Tolkien". BBC News. 2003-12-17. Retrieved 2009-07-18. 
  3. ^ Flynn, Gillian (2003-12-17). "Final Witness". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2009-07-18. 
  4. ^ Duncan, Hugo (2003-12-09). "From Mold to Middle Earth". Daily Post. Retrieved 2009-07-18. 
  5. ^ Susman, Gary (2001-12-10). "Tolkien Opposition". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2009-07-18. 
  6. ^ Thomas, David (2003-02-24). "J R R Tolkien's grandson 'cut off from literary inheritance'". Sunday Telegraph. Retrieved 2010-04-23. 

External links[edit]