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.
Be sure to listen to Eldest, the sequel to Eragon.
©2003 Christopher Paolini; (P)2002 Random House, Inc., Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.
"It's an impressive start to a writing career that's sure to flourish." (Booklist)
"Doyle's range of accents is perfect for the multiple characters of this epic....On paper Eragon is a sprawling fantasy, filled with obvious nods to Tolkien and too many convenient plot devices. But on audio, it fills the ears with vivid characters, witty dialogue, and nail-biting battle scenes set in a magical world where a beautiful blue dragon and her rider are at the noble center of it all." (AudioFile)
"An impressive epic fantasy." (Publishers Weekly)
"An authentic work of great talent. The story is gripping;...it moves with force." (The New York Times Book Review)
For the first hour, I had a great time, and was mentally comparing this to the Belgariad.
Then the plot began to unfold.
Shallow, shallow, shallow.
There is a story, but it's transparent. The character motivations are at best weak and often gratuitous. Clear character-borne logic to move action from scene to scene is almost totally absent. By the end of the book, every chlidish, unsupportable plot shift had me rolling my eyes and groaning.
Huge holes in the plot, serious inconsistencies in the physical world, arbitrary and clumsy devices, and a pointless guest-cameo from a bad Garfield clone ... I could barely stand to finish it.
What you almost always hear first about this book is that it was written by a teen who started it when he was 15. What you rarely hear about are the underhanded, dirty tricks the author and publisher use to hype this book. I'm tired of seeing books from my favorite authors trashed by "Eragon marketers" promoting Paolini behind a thin veil.
This story is so borrowed from the works of other writers before it that even the stereotypical characters are stereotypes of characters done better by other authors. And Paolini isn't just stepping on other authors backs to get to the top, his "marketers" are trying to saw other authors into little pieces.
Frankly, I was not impressed with the tactics, the writing, or any of it. Sure the author was a teenager when he wrote it BUT the book would never have become a bestseller without all the dirty rotten tricks of its author and publisher. The success definitely isn't based oon literary merit because there isn't any.
Eragon is a textbook example of a greek tragedy: the very thing that makes it great, the hype, is its downfall. On the back cover there is a New York Times quote that refers to the book as "An authentic work of great talent." This book is neither authentic, nor of particularly great talent.
Paolini's real weaknesses as a writer, however, emerge whenever he tries to achieve the so-called "lyrical beauty" he asserts to aspire to. On his website Paolini states, "I strive for a lyrical beauty somewhere between Tolkien at his best and Seamus Heaney's translation of Beowulf." Tolkien was a professor at Oxford. Heaney won the Nobel prize. Paolini doesn't even come close.
This has been my favorite audible book yet. The reader is very good, making the the characters come alive. (Though I did find the dragon's voice a bit irritating.) The story is very fast paced. I found it hard to stop listening once I started. The author was only 15 when he wrote the book! That's pretty amazing and I found my 12 year old was very inspired by this fact. This was the first book I put on cd for him to listen to and he loved it. I think the book would be very well received by young people, but anyone liking fantasy of middle earth should enjoy this book.
I did enjoy this story from beginning to end. Characters were developed well and plots were interesting. This is a good book for all ages.
I really am enjoying this series but I'm having a little trouble with the dragon's voice. To me, it sounded far too much like the Cookie Monster. I have to keep pushing that thought out of my mind as I listen.
But considering the author was in his teens when he wrote this, I'm certainly not complaining. I did notice some similarities in dragon characteristics to Anne McCaffery's Dragon Rider books (which is okay as I love those books as well).
Didn't see the movie so I'm interested in seeing how the series ends. All in all, well worth the listen.
The story is very intriguing and will keep you on your toes. It is one of my son's favorite books.
The audiobook however we, my son and I, were unable to finish. This was due wholly to the grating voices of Sapira and Solebum which were completely out of character, sounding hoarse and and like old men.
this book is awsome it was written by a 17 year old but what i cant beliave is how he thought of all of this. this is like lord of the rings and harrypotter combined with a twist its sad and yet happy their are elves dwarves and yes dragons
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