It's books like this that made me wish I had the natural talent for music, or had at least studied and practiced hard enough to develop talent. The motion picture score that Howard Shore composed for The Lord of the Rings trilogy is absolutely brilliant, and while nothing can match his magnificent orchestra, there is something unique and incredible about hearing the same music played on a simple piano -- coming from your very own fingers.
The front cover is one of the promotional posters (NOT the DVD cover as was the case with the other two piano books from the trilogy) showing Saruman from the back commanding his 10,000 Uruk-hai. If you look on the right, although it is geographically incorrect, you can see Edoras in Rohan in the distance. Inside the book are forty pages, eight of which are movie pictures. Once again, there are some gruesome orcs pictured inside, in case you have little hobbits around the house that might get scared.
The music includes:
- Gollum's Song, the end-credits song of the movie. Not very enjoyable to play, I'd say...it's a rather mournful and melancholy song.
- Evenstar, which is all-Elvish, but surprisingly doesn't provide the translation. Shouldn't be too hard to dig one up on the internet, however. The tune is pretty, the background for Aragorn's dream/vision of Arwen in The Two Towers.
- Isengard Unleashed, which begins as the soundtrack score does, with the lament for Haldir upon his untimely death in the battle for Helm's Deep. Then it moves on to the score for the Ents as they march to war. This is probably the longest in the book, maybe of all three books. Afterwards, they give the translation of the war song of the Ents.
- Breath of Life, the quiet but stirring tune/song that you hear when Aragorn lies wounded after a battle, and receives another vision/dream of Arwen that gives him a (let's all say it together now) "breath of life". Elvish lyrics, English translation at the end.
- Forth Eorlingas, my favorite one (at least to HEAR), the tune that shows the rousing of the remaining soldiers at Helm's Deep, their death plunge out the causeway, and Gandalf's near-biblical arrival to the rescue. The second-best in this book, in my opinion.
- Rohan, which was an absolutely necessary piece to include in this book. It's short, *almost* simple enough for a beginner like me to pick my way through, and beyond gorgeous. It begins with the noble theme for Éowyn, and peaks into the majestic score for the kingdom of Rohan. This one alone is worth getting the book for.
This book makes an excellent addition to your piano library, or an excellent gift for your musically-inclined hobbit-heads. Go for it.