The Hobbit Book Summary - The Hobbit Book explained in key points
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The Hobbit summary

J. R. R. Tolkien

A Journey Through Middle Earth—A Lord of the Rings Prequel

4.5 (27 ratings)
21 mins
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    The Hobbit
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    The Hobbit and The Wizard

    Bilbo Baggins was a hobbit –⁠ and by all appearances, not much different from others of his kind. That meant he was slightly pudgy, dressed in bright colors, and wore no shoes. He was small, about half an average human’s height, and had a friendly, good-natured face.

    Like other hobbits, Bilbo also lived in a hole in the ground, which could be accessed through a perfectly round, green door. One morning he was standing outside of it and smoking his pipe when suddenly an old man with a staff walked up. He wore a tall, pointed hat, a long gray cloak, and an enormous beard.

    The man was, in fact, a wizard, and he was there in search of someone to take part in an adventure. But it was very difficult to find a suitable candidate anywhere in hobbit territory. Most hobbits –⁠ the Bagginses included –⁠ were not exactly adventurous types. They generally preferred to remain in their quiet, cozy homes.

    However, Bilbo wasn’t just a Baggins. He was also a Took, on his mother’s side, and Tooks had been known to go on adventures from time to time.

    These two conflicting elements of Bilbo’s nature were both at play as the wizard engaged him in conversation. When the wizard finally gave his name –⁠ Gandalf –⁠ Bilbo was pleasantly surprised. Of course he knew Gandalf! The wizard was well-known for his stories, fireworks, and enchanted objects –⁠ as well as for drawing young lads and lasses out on adventures.

    Gandalf was pleased to find that Bilbo remembered him, and at that moment, he resolved to give Bilbo what he asked for. Bilbo assured Gandalf that he hadn’t asked for anything, and that he didn’t want any adventures, but that Gandalf was welcome to come to tea anytime –⁠ perhaps even tomorrow.

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    What is The Hobbit about?

    The Hobbit (1937) is the classic fantasy adventure story of an unsuspecting hobbit named Bilbo Baggins. Ripped unexpectedly from his idle epicurean life by the wizard Gandalf, Bilbo finds himself on a journey to help a group of dwarves take back their stolen treasure from the jealous dragon Smaug. Along the way, he encounters trolls, elves, goblins, and spiders –⁠ plus a certain magic ring –⁠ and eventually finds that he had what it took to be a hero all along.

    Who should read The Hobbit?

    • Fantasy lovers
    • Fans of the Lord of the Rings or Hobbit movies
    • Adventure seekers

    About the Author

    J. R. R. Tolkien was a writer, philologist, and professor of literature and Anglo-Saxon at the University of Oxford. His body of work includes a large collection of stories, poems, invented languages, and essays dealing with the fantasy world of Middle-Earth. The Lord of the Rings series and The Hobbit are part of this collection, and their immense, enduring popularity has led many to name Tolkien the father of high fantasy.

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