Leaf by Niggle

  • by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Narrated by Derek Jacobi
  • 0 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Tolkien's acclaimed modern classic 'fairie' tale, read by Derek Jacobi.
'Leaf by Niggle' recounts the strange adventures of the painter Niggle, who sets out to paint the perfect tree. But he senses that he will be snatched away from his work long before it is finished - if indeed it could ever be finished in this world. For it is in another and brighter place that Niggle finds his tree is finished and learns that it is indeed a real tree, a true part of creation.
Created in the early 1940s, at the same time as The Lord of the Rings was taking shape, 'Leaf by Niggle' is a passionate adult fairy tale about a man who has 'a long journey to make', thought to be an allegory of Tolkien's own life.

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What the Critics Say

"As with all good short stories, this one expands in the imagination. Mighty oaks from tiny acorns grow, indeed." (The Times)
"Brings a wistful charm to complex issues of truth, beauty, duty and creative aspiration." (The Herald)
"A haunting and successful demonstration of the qualities of faerie." (New York Times)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

man gets cheated out of house and dies...

love Derek Jacobi's voice, and Tolkein's other stories, but this one not so much. Best I can say about it is that it was cheap.
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- lattetown "I like books when they are read... To me with different voices for all the characters... By a talented author. ~Haiku"

What are you focused on?

If you could sum up Leaf by Niggle in three words, what would they be?

Love thy Neighbor.


What did you like best about this story?

It is great short story on the effects our choices make.


Which character – as performed by Derek Jacobi – was your favorite?

Niggle. All other characters were really to short lived to become attached to them.


Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

When Niggle starts to see the value of life.


Any additional comments?

Another great story for children. Good way to get them to ask questions on life. Also good for adults, but i feel like it is read more for children.

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- Dragonfly Samurai "I'm game for Sci Fi, Fantasy, Fiction, History. I may even try this venue for learning languages. I have also come to love Great Courses."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-23-2016
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Limited