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From Barnes & NobleJ.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings (The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King) -- plus the adventures of Bilbo Baggins, as told in the trilogy's classic prelude, The Hobbit -- is a genuine masterpiece. More than the most widely read and influential fantasy story of all time, it is arguably the most memorable and endearing tale ever written. Originally published in 1954, The Lord of the Rings set the framework from which all epic/quest fantasy since has built upon. Through the urgings of the enigmatic wizard Gandalf, young hobbit Frodo Baggins embarks on an urgent, incredibly treacherous journey to destroy the One Ring. This ring -- created, and then lost, by the Dark Lord, Sauron, centuries earlier -- is a weapon of evil, one that Sauron so desperately wants returned to him; with the power of the ring once again his own, the Dark Lord will unleash his wrath upon all of Middle-Earth. The only way to prevent this horrible fate from becoming reality is to return the Ring to Mordor, the only place it can be destroyed; unfortunately for our heroes, Mordor is also Sauron's lair. The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy is essential reading not only for fans of fantasy but for lovers of classic literature as well.