After the success of The Hobbit, Tolkien duly set pen to paper and began what would be the first chapter of The Lord of the Rings, but it would be another twelve years before he would complete it, stating "My work has escaped from my control, and I have produced a monster . . . it is not really a sequel to The Hobbit, but to The Silmarillion." Another four years passed while the "monster" was tirelessly worked on and in 1954 the first part of this towering work, The Fellowship of the Ring, was published. Four months after this The Two Towers appeared, and eleven months later The Return of the King. It would be over a decade before The Lord of the Rings became available in a single volume; now it can be read and enjoyed in paperback and hardback, with or without illustrations, in one volume or three, on audio CD or as a download, as a de luxe slipcased edition and even as an electronic book.