Eragon – Christopher Paolini


This was a really interesting read with mystical creatures, lands and objects. Just as you begin to understand an element of the plot you’re torn away to greet another crevice in the main storyline.
Eragon is the main character in the plot who stumbles upon a blue stone in the forest. Hoping it will bring his family some food for the winter, he is shocked to discover he is actually in possession of a dragon egg. Setting out for revenge, he falls into the extinct world of dragon riders and feels obliged to delve into a quest against the empire. Eragon and his dragon cross the paths of different characters along the way, some harbouring the darkest of secrets whilst others the darkest personalities.

Having finished the book I am stuck between a rock and a hard place as the saying goes. I don’t fully know what to think about the book, in places I felt it dragged on as the main character travels from villages to towns and back again. He barely scratches the surface of his expedition in each of these places yet meets interesting characters and therefore I became intrigued by the differing personalities that featured in the book. Not only was I engrossed by the characters and the mystical beings, the magical elements of the plot attracted my full attention.

The settings of the plot were described beautifully as Eragon travels through ancient landscapes, forests and valleys. The descriptions were attractively structured to the point where I could imagine the vast landscapes and surrounding beauty.

As mentioned previously the plot includes many interesting characters and relationships. Eragon has a small family but from the relationship extracts at the start of the book, they all have a strong relationship. However an issue I had with the plot was that his family plays a dominant role in the first third of the book and as the plot develops they gradually appear less throughout. He stands as an independent and individually strong character yet is content with guidance and a fellow comrade for support. Therefore when Eragon begins his travels at the age of 15, it is comforting as a reader to watch his interactions with other characters and his development into a much more confident, determined and purposeful individual.

The other characters all establish their own strengths and because of the magical elements in the book, each character has their own personalities and abilities. For me as a reader this made each individual appear more memorable as they possessed their own unique capabilities. Therefore as Eragon’s travels expanded, the more people he encountered the more interesting they became as the common mortal in most books was a rarity in Eragon.

Overall because I found myself getting a little bored with the book I am giving it a 3 out of 5 stars on goodreads. That is not to say that the book is not for everyone as I thoroughly enjoyed it yet cannot place it in the same league as other dystopian books I have read. However it must be taken into account that this book was published primarily in 2002 and in that year was probably the best of its genre. I also find it daunting that the author, Christopher Paolini was 15 when he drafted this novel, making the intricate storyline and fascinating characters the product of a teenage mind. Casting my mind back to when I was 15, I found it difficult to motivate myself to do homework compared with writing a novel…

Anyway this leaves me in the centre position between a rock and a hard place evermore, as I toy with the idea of reading the next three books in the series. As I have read the first one I feel obliged to read the rest as Eragon ends openly with no finality to the main storyline. Due to this reason and the overall enjoyment of the mystical elements in the book I will probably read the next few books at some point.


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