Please read The Hobbit. It’s so damn good.
I haven’t read The Lord of the Rings trilogy (don’t worry, I know, they are on my never ending To Read list), but I know just from this novel that I think J. R. R. Tolkien is a genius. The start of all the exciting adventures in store for Bilbo Baggins and his fellow hobbits, Gandalf, Gollum and Smaug the Magnificent. Simply: a classic for every age and taste.