October 08, 2011

Eragon by Christopher Paolini

This is a fun read, but one shouldn't expect to read a brand new brilliant fantasy when reading it. While I won't go into how heavily this book borrows from other fantasies, I will go into some of its other flaws. That's not to say that because it has flaws it isn't worth reading, however. It proves to be good mind candy and a great way to settle down on a rainy day.

Eragon is a poor farm boy who's out hunting when he finds a dragon egg. Not sure of what it is at first, he attempts to sell it. Being unable to sell it he keeps it and is very surprised when out hatches a dragon. He keeps her in secret as the empire would destroy him and his family if they knew they possessed a dragon. But somehow, they find out and Eragon narrowly escapes with Brown (a mysterious bard in the town)and Saphira (the dragon). He swears revenge on his Uncle's killers and he, Brom, and Saphira (although they meet other friends along the way)take off across the country in pursuit of them. But there are more dangers than that and he finds himself wondering if the Varden (a rebel group) can assist him and Saphira with their revenge.

The characters are ok. There are a wide variety of characters, but what I find a problem with is authenticity. Eragon is supposed to be a poor uneducated, illiterate farm boy, yet he speaks like one with higher learning, possibly surpassing normal noble speech as well. The way he speaks just doesn't ring true for his character.

The writing is VERY descriptive and flowery. This isn't always a bad thing, but it does bog the story down a bit and as mentioned before, makes the character's speech hard to take. The dialogues in the book are also very stilted and unnatural. Otherwise, the story as a whole is pretty unoffensive and appropriate for younger readers despite having battle scenes.

I read this series for fun, not because I'm searching for some amazing piece of fantasy. And that's the way I think this book should have to be taken otherwise you could drive yourself nuts reading it.

Copyright 2002
730 pages

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