Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Book Review- Eragon

Title: Eragon
Author: Christopher Paolini
Publication date: August 26th 2003
Publisher: Corgi
Pages: 503
Series: Inheritance #1
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Rating: 3/5
When young Eragon finds a polished blue stone in the forest, he thinks it is the lucky discovery of a poor farm boy; perhaps it will buy his adopted family meat for the winter. But when the stone brings a dragon hatchling, Eragon realizes he has stumbled upon a legacy nearly as old as the Empire itself. Overnight his simple life is shattered, and he is thrust into a perilous new world of inescapable destiny, magical forces, and powerful people. With only an ancient sword and the instruction of an old,mysterious, hermit storyteller for guidance, Eragon and the fledgling dragon must navigate the dangerous terrain and dark enemies of an Empire ruled by a Emperor whose evil and power knows no bounds. Can Eragon take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders? The fate of the Empire may rest in his hands….
- Goodreads

My thoughts

I love fantasy books and as soon as I picked up this book and saw the dragon on the front I was sure it was going to be a winner. I was one word.....dissapointed. This is a series I was hoping would fill the void left by the end of the Harry Potter series as it is of a similar genre. Unfortunately it was not to be.

Plot: 3/5

Many people compare the plot of this book to Star Wars and although I am familiar with the Star Wars saga, I don't really see the connection. In my opinion it seems a lot more similar to the Lord of The Rings trilogy. It is fine for authors to take inspiration from other works especially as fantasy is such a broad genre. However I feel there are too many similarities and I subconsiously felt myself comparing the two books, with Tolkien coming up trumps. As a plot on its own I felt that the pace was too slow. The beginning was drawn out too much, just so we could learn inconsequential things about various characters and places. I thought perhaps it had improved towards the middle, when the action began but it soon frittered out and resumed its slow, lethargic pace.

Characters: 4/5

The main character in the novel is Eragon, who is our hero for the whole series. I feel that although I know who Eragon is and his personality I still have really no idea what he looks like. I am basing my idea of him on the actor who plays him in the film of this book. Paolini spends enough time describing what his dragon looks like but not enough on Eragon himself. Eragon's dragon is called Saphira, and is a character that I rather like in this book. I enjoy some of the witty things she says and feel like I know a great deal about her. Of the minor characters, I liked; Brom, Roran and Murtagh. I enjoyed the diversity there was between these 3 male characters even though they didn't interact with each other a lot.

Setting: 2/5

The book is set in a world Paolini has created from his imagination. Apart from being ridiculously named in words no one can pronounce, the world is described so haphazzardly in the book that I have no idea where anywhere is situated in relation to anywhere else. Paolini did provide a map at the start of the book, but I don't want to be flicking to the front of a book just to establish where the characters are.

Overall:

I was dissapointed by this book as I anticipated so much more. I felt that the descriptions were too long and forced, in some cases causing me to skip over a paragraph just to get the story moving. As I read through it I found myself questioning some of the metaphors Paolini had used as in my mind they didn't make sense or add anything to the description.
I wouldn't reccommend this book as there are many other fantasy series for a reader to enjoy instead.

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