Eragon (Inheritance, Book 1), by Christopher Paolini

Posted: February 18, 2009 in Fantasy
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

EragonI’ve caught up on all three of the current Inhertitance cycle books, but I hate to post reviews of books out of order. So let me share with you the story of Eragon.

When I stumbled across this book, I was surprised at how much I liked it. In fact I liked it so much that I did research on the author, Christopher Paolini, just to see what I could learn about him. What I discovered truly amazed me, as he was only fifteen when he started writing. This encouraged me to get back to writing for myself, as I had started “A Wizards Tale” when I was thirteen. The challenge was to improve my writing skills, and Paolini’s personal story talked about how he tackled projects by educating himself. This motivated me to acquired the same books on the craft that he read, but it didn’t stop there. Since then I have greatly expanded my studies on the art of writing, and now I have even published my own book as a result. Thanks Chirstopher!

One final note: I thought the movie version of Eragon was awful. It had none of the complex character dynamics that I liked so much in the book; such as the tension between Eragon and Arya. I do not recommend the movie.

Story overview:

Fifteen-year-old Eragon, who lives with his uncle Garrow and cousin Roran on a farm, finds a polished blue stone, which appears right in front of him one day as he wanders in a wilderness called the “Spine”. To his surprise, several days later a dragon hatches from it.

Eragon learns that the dragon, Saphira, has chosen him to be her rider, and Eragon’s uncle gets killed because of it. He travels with a man named Brom to a place called Teirm in order to find the murderous Ra’zac who did the deed. Along the way Brom trains Eragon in magic, sword fighting, and the Ancient Language.

After many events, he discovers a captured elf, Arya, and frees her. They flee to the Varden, which is a group of people forming a rebellion against the tyrant Galbatorix. The Varden is invaded and Eragon finds himself fighting alongside them.

My thoughts:

I know that this story is not particularly original, in fact there are many elements of “Star Wars” and “The Lord of the Rings” used here. However, the situations and characters kept me wanting to know more. At first I didn’t like Eragon, but as he grew so did I grow to like him, and I particularly liked the werecat, Solembum, who is an extremely interesting character.

Things to consider:

There is a lot of violence in this story, however the language and any sexual situations are very tame, if not totally non-existent. My thought is that this is more of a boy’s story; though, I do understand that a lot of girls like it too. I would age rank this one into the early teens.

Opportunities for discussion:

You can explain to your children that, even though unpleasant, difficult situations are what mold a person’s character and helps them to grow up. You can explain to them that in the Bible, God often allows things to happen so that good will abound in the end. Another good point to bring up is the importance of companionship, as Eragon and Saphira become closer and more dependent on each other. I should point out too that, this is a good opportunity to share your thoughts on fortunetelling.

  1. […] 2), by Christopher Paolini The next book in the Inheritance cycle is Eldest. If you read my review of Eragon, you will see that I really enjoyed the book. I am mostly able to say the same for Eldest, with a […]

  2. […] (Inheritance, Book 3), by Christopher Paolini After Eragon and Eldest comes the 3rd book in the Inheritance Cycle, Brisingr. Originally designed to be the […]

  3. […] final book. In fact, I thought it was the best one of the series. I really liked the first book, Eragon, and was somewhat disappointed with the middle two (Eldest, Brisingr). If Paolini had stuck to his […]

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