For the 2012 Catholic Literature Series, we chose to revisit J.R.R. Tolkien, an author who has already been featured, but whose incredible talent and influence merit a second look. At first glance, Tolkien may seem a strange subject for a series that normally focuses on introducing undergraduates to Catholic authors of whom they may be unaware. After all, Tolkien’s works have been and continue to be phenomenally popular around the world. Despite this, we chose to feature Tolkien because, though most undergraduates are surely at least somewhat familiar with his work, relatively few of them may be aware of the deep influence his Catholic faith had in shaping that work. For this reason, as we joined Tolkien fans everywhere in anticipating the release of the Hobbit trilogy, we wanted to take the opportunity to examine Tolkien’s work in light of his faith.