Eragon follows the exploits of a boy, a dragon, and their fight against an evil king, and his henchmen, who would plunge the world into darkness.
Prophecies of revenge, spoken in a wretched language only he knew, rolled from his tongue. He clenched his thin hands and glared at the sky. The cold stars stared back, unwinking, otherworldly watchers.” pg 14, ebook
Though it is written for children, Eragon is a charming tale that I thoroughly enjoyed as an adult reader. The pace was snappy, the characters were written quite well, and the story itself was a fun, adventure and fantasy.
“Eragon found the stone both beautiful and frightening. Where did it come from? Does it have a purpose? Then a more disturbing thought came to him: Was it sent here by accident, or am I meant to have it?” pg 16, ebook
I did a little research about the author, Christopher Paolini, and was surprised to discover that this was one of the first books he published and he was in his teens when he wrote it. How impressive is that?
“Dragons will constantly amaze you. Thing… happen around them, mysterious things that are impossible anywhere else.”
There were a couple things I didn’t enjoy about Eragon, but they didn’t ruin my appreciation for the overall story. For example, I wanted Saphira the dragon to have a different personality. She has some character traits that I felt were incongruous with how an immensely powerful, magical being would act.
When I think carefully about it, what a silly quibble to have with a story based in fantasy. But readers will have their preferences, and I like to picture dragons as either wise and benevolent, Buddha-like beings or demonic treasure hoarders along the lines of Smaug.
Paolini’s version of them is different from both of these extremes. He makes dragons fallible, like humans. Which, at the end of the day, makes this a better story for children. A lesson like, even the most powerful among us can make mistakes or experience unpleasant emotions like jealousy, is a good lesson to learn.
“These books are my friends, my companions. They make me laugh and cry and find meaning in life.” pg 153, ebook
Highly recommended for young adult fantasy readers or the young-at-heart.
Full text of this review originally appeared on Heidi’s blog: https://thehelpdeskbookblog.wordpress.com/2020/10/20/eragon-by-christopher-paolini/