Book review III

Christopher Paolini
Eragon

Book cover

At school and in life, I learned that critics should start with a positive aspect before coming to the bad and very bad points. So the good thing about Eragon is that it is good to read. Once started, it was interesting enough to keep me reading. Eragon, playing in an imaginary country, is basically telling the story of a young farm boy who finds something what he first believes is a valuable stone but what turns out to be a dragon egg.

Together with the hatchling, soon baptised Saphira, he has to find out that his world is containing old and dangerous secrets and he finds himself within short time in the middle of a battle which is led since ages. Eragon has to learn everything, fighting, flying a dragon, his place in a world dominated by multiple forces not all of them wishing him his best..

Slowly but surely Eragon is finding and fighting his way through a story which is well written but which contains far too much known elements. I was permanently reminded of Lord of the Rings and Star Wars.

  • Eragon is not the son of his adoptive parents but of a mysterious mother while the father is completely unknown (I do not know the second part yet but I bet that it is one of the bad guys…)
  • He meets a teacher who seems deeply involved in the ancient struggles but who refuses to reveal his secrets until his death.
  • There is one dominating force ruling the world, opposed by a mysterious rebel group
  • There are elfs, dwarfs, shades and the orks have just another name
  • Some of Eragon’s enemies are hissing
  • Eragon meets a mysterious stranger who saves his life and accompanies his journey

To sum up, I do not mind if authors are copying some good ideas but in the case of Eragon it is too obvious and too much. Some new ideas would have been nice instead of picking out elements from LoR and Star Wars, and adding a dragon. Actually it is a pity because it is still good reading and I am going to buy Eldest, the second volume too. But I hope that the copying is going to be less…

 

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