29 October, 2015

REVIEW: ERAGON by Christopher Paolini

Title: Eragon
Author: Christopher Paolini
Series: The Inheritance Cycle #1
Genres: Fantasy, YA, Fiction
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Release: 2003
Source: Hardcover
Pages: 509

// Goodreads // BoodDepository // Amazon //

BLURB: One boy. One dragon. A world of adventure.When 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 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 destiny, magic, and power. With only an ancient sword and the advice of an old storyteller for guidance, Eragon and the fledgling dragon must navigate the dangerous terrain and dark enemies of an Empire ruled by a king whose evil knows no bounds.

Can Eragon take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders? The fate of the Empire may rest in his hands.

EXPECTATIONS: I read this book a very very long time ago... I was around 14 years old back then and I think it was around the time of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix book and I just wanted to read some high fantasy as well with magic and stuff. Well, Eragon has that so I guess I wasn't disappointed at all.

THE WORLD: This is a very complicated world... let's see the world is called Alagaësia and that's where the main character lives, Eragon, and it's ruled by an evil king who happens to be a Rider as well. But then there are other adjacent countries like Surda (the country where the rebels are) and Du Weldenvarden (where the elves live) and the Beor Mountains (where the dwarfs live). I mentioned that Alagaësia is ruled by a tyrant Rider/king, what or who are Riders? those who bond with a dragon and thus they are allowed to ride on their backs as well as acquiring the use of magic because dragons are magical creatures so when a human bonds with a dragon the human can then use magic. Usually these riders live longer lives and that's why the evil king has been ruling the country for over 100 years... also humans become more elf-like, their ears get a bit more pointy and their faces more beautiful. Have in mind that the elves in this world are pretty much like the elves in Lord of The Rings; they live their life apart in deep forest, they don't like confrontation but will fight for what it's right, they can use magic (by speaking the language of magic which turns out to be the same as elf language, coincidence? I think not) and finally they live very long lives. The dwarfs are also like in LoTR; they like to leave in the mountains, they are small but tough, they are stubborn, and they also live longer lives than humans. Now, speaking about humans they live in Alagaësia and Surda. Those living in Surda are the lucky ones because they are ruled by a different king and it's the perfect country for the rebels. Oh! I almost forgot! Dragons communicate via thoughts meaning they would only speak in your mind and Riders and elfs are the only ones who can communicate with them.

CHARACTERS: The main character is Eragon (surprise!), a fifteen year old boy who lives with his uncle, Garrow, and his cousin, Roran. Roran becomes important in the following books so remember his name but for now he's not very relevant. Eragon lives in a very small village located on the mountains (in the map is on the left, The Spine, a place called Carvahall) and basically knows nothing about the king/Rider, just that he's evil and a bad king. Because of Brom, the storyteller of the village he then learns more about the dragons and how they used to be everywhere but the evil king, called Galbatorix, killed them all and there is only one remaining: his very own dragon + 3 dragon eggs which haven't hatched yet because dragon eggs given to the Riders only hatch to the person they're meant for, their soon-to-be Riders.

For you to know a little bit of the story, Eragon finds a dragon egg while hunting in the mountains. The egg hatches and they bond. He names his dragon Saphira. At first nobody in the village notices it but after an attack from Galbatorix, who sent the Ra'Zac to kill Eragon, ends with the death of Eragon's uncle, Garrow, Brom discovers the truth and takes Eragon under his wing. Together they leave Carvahall to find the rebels and the elves for Eragon in order to be trained as a Rider and ultimately kill Galbatorix. Along the way there are two more characters introduced with a big influence in subsequent books, Murtagh and Arya (she's an elf).

ROMANCE: No romance in this book.

GOOD: The world. It is complicated but it was very well imagined and narrated. I didn't find any timeline or space-line mistakes because the book (the whole series actually) was very nicely wrapped up. I also enjoyed Eragon as a character! he's more immature in the first book of course because he's only 15 and a bit traumatized and overwhelmed by everything that happened but he really is a good character. And Saphira! she's the overprotective dragon mama but her point of view is always interesting. Also, this is just the first book so there are a lot of questions and barely any answers but there are plot twists and it's action packed!

BAD: I don't recall it having any minuses... I know Christopher Paolini was only 15 years old when he wrote Eragon (and about 17 when it was published?) so there may be some mistakes but really, no minuses. NOTE: this is a complicated fantasy world so it takes a bit to habituate to it and the characters show a lot of maturation through out the series but you have to be patient. Give it a chance.

Also a major minus was the movie. Yes, they made a movie but it was badly made... if I hadn't had read the book maybe I would've enjoyed it but in comparison the movie was just very disappointing.

OVERALL: I loved the whole series. All the books have 5 stars just like HP series. These are the series I grew up with so I'm very attached to them. For all readers who like LoTR (movies and/or books) you should definitely try Eragon!

What do you think about ERAGON?