Tolkien fans rejoice! The Lord of the Rings author's estate will soon release a 100-year-old manuscript that was never before released to the public. Titled The Story of Kullervo, the work is one of Tolkien's earliest efforts, and helped lay the foundation for the stories he'd tell about Middle-earth throughout his career.
Tolkien started Kullervo in 1914, during his college days at Oxford University. The tale, which follows the tragic story of an orphan cursed with supernatural powers, is based on the Finnish epic poem The Kalevala, and though he never finished it in his lifetime, he used this work as a basis for his own stories and languages:
"The germ of my attempt to write legends of my own to fit my private languages was the tragic tale of the hapless Kullervo in the Finnish Kalevala. It remains a major matter in the legends of the First Age (which I hope to publish as The Silmarillion)"Though this is the first time Kullervo is being made available for public consumption, the manuscript was originally published in 2010 by author and Tolkien scholar Verlyn Flieger in Tolkien Studies: Volume 7. The Story of Kullervo, complete with notes and supplementary essays,will hit bookstores in the UK on August 27th. It'll be available in America on October 27th.