I would be lying if i said the hobbit didn't lay down some kind of framework in my imagination as a child. My mother often read the Hobbit to me during the day while the rest of the family was gone, actually she had read the hobbit to all of us kids at one point or another often times along side The chronicles of Narnia. At the time, my father was a fifth grade teacher at a christian school in Levittown, Puerto Rico, to which my sisters attended. It wasn't until sometime later that i discovered (a box full of paper back versions of the hobbit in my parents basement) that my father would have all his students read and discuss The Hobbit.
To be perfectly honest, i don't ever remember the stories the stories in hobbit until sometime later when we had moved back to Indiana and my father had brought home a VHS of The Hobbit the animated film. It wasn't until i started to watch this that i began to remember some of the tales my mother once read to me. It was weird because all i had remembered, really, was the cover of the hobbit because of how creepy/wierd it looked to me, and i often thought about that cover for years to come not knowing the relation it had to The Lord of The Rings and what great part it would have to play in my life.
So as far as fantasy fiction goes, J.R.R Tolkein and C.S. Lewis was pretty much the extent of it. I wasn't "allowed" to read the Harry Potter series nor was i allowed anywhere near any Magic card sets and or anything with the name Dungeons and Dragons in it, which is a real shame. The ignorance of the religious sometimes really makes me wonder sometimes, but i that another blog post i guess.
I enjoyed reading the hobbit again, its always good to go back the the book that started it all. I must say i really do enjoy the style in writing of the book, as if its a tale being told, im drawn to stories like that. It has a folk nature to it, in terms of telling a story to a person or group of people. This along with other reasons is why i love The Princess Bride so much.
As a side note, i was very excited to see a collaboration between, Del Torro and Jackson because i felt like Del Toro would have brought the practical effects, that folky feel of practical effects to the film, but as fate would have it, it was not to be so.
In one of our more recent classes we watched part of the extended version of the hobbit and i could be more jazzed to pick up this version. I had forgotten about the extended editions as i am quite familiar with the extended versions of the Lord of the Rings and as i am learning more and more about the film industry it seems, the directers cut or extended versions are the way to go, because as most know, the studio often likes to play their part and overplay their hand but the extended versions only help extend the directors vision for the project.