Each volume in the boxed set features Tolkien’s own dust-jacket design. When The Lord of the Rings was first published, Allen & Unwin asked Tolkien to provide design suggestions, but to keep printing costs down the publishers decided to use the central device on Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring design (the One Ring with the Eye of Sauron in the centre, along with Gandalf’s ring Narya) for all three tomes.
In addition to the three volumes of The Lord of the Rings, the 60th anniversary edition boxed set includes Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull’s The Lord of the Rings: A Reader’s Companion (first published in 2005). The dust-jacket is based on one of Tolkien’s designs for The Fellowship of the Ring. Notably, a ribbon runs behind the central ring. The runic inscription reads, ‘In the land of shadows [sic] where the Mordor [sic] lie’.
Tolkien Society member Michael Flowers has reported that the Book of Mazarbul ‘facsimiles’ are included, just as Tolkien originally intended, and that the paper quality is superior to other recent collector’s editions. The text appears to be the same as the 50th anniversary edition, although the Reader’s Companion has been updated.
HarperCollins have also released a one-volume illustrated (by Alan Lee) slipcased edition of The Lord of the Rings to tie-in with the 60th anniversary.
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