The second edition in this series has to go to the Godfather of Fantasy – JRR Tolkien.
I can’t really remember when I first read The Lord of the Rings. I was probably about 12 or 13, and I read the Dutch version, of course. I also read LotR before I read The Hobbit. Most of that experience is lost in the hazy mists of time, but I do remember absolutely loving it. I must have re-read it at least once a year for the next ten years or so, and to my great joy I was even allowed to put it on my book list for my secondary school English exam.
(As an aside here, I took three languages in secondary school – Dutch and English because they were compulsory, and German because it was relatively easy. Each language required you to read a number of books for the exam. I think German and English needed about 20 and Dutch around 25. The problem is that all these books had to come from a list of ‘proper literature’, which is a hard pill to swallow when you love to read but hate long-winded, dramatic prose, or nasty books like Lord of the Flies. Being able to put a hefty 1200-page doorstop like LotR on the list was a godsend. But, as usual, I digress.)