Book Review: Eldest by Christopher Paolini

Title: Eldest
Author: Christopher Paolini
Rating: 4/5

Summary:  Continuing where Eragon ended, Eragon and Saphira (his dragon) have just saved the rebel state from King Galbatorix and now Eragon must travel to Ellesmera (the land of the elves) to receive further training in being a Dragon Rider, namely magic and swordsmanship training.  However, this journey is not without its betrayals and chaos, and soon Eragon is left uncertain who he can place his trust in. In the meantime, his cousin Roran fights a new battle, and this battle holds the potential to put Eragon’s life in even greater danger.  Will Eragon escape with his life?

Review:  This book has many twists and turns and the most surprising is the fact that Ormoris, an Elven rider is there to show Eragon that he is not the only Dragon rider left.  Eragon also learns that he is falling in love with an unobtainable woman, Arya, Princess of the Elves.  One of the other unique twists is that Eragon discovers that he has a brother, and who his father is.  Neither of which are people Eragon can be proud of, and one of the two killed his former Mentor.

The plot is brilliant, the story quite fascinating, but it travels at a pace that is so ungodly slow because of all the intense and intricate detail that Paolini puts into the story.  Yes, I can understand that some of it is required, but really? 300 plus pages for a journey to Ellesmera and learning magic, and then another 300 plus pages for Roran’s story to unfold.  This leaves only about 60 pages or so for the Reunion and the great battle of the book.

This book is filled with much smaller battles and skirmishes before culminating in the big battle.  Despite the overloading of details, I enjoyed the story very much.  This story hooks you and pulls you in, and makes you want to read the next in the series with a dramatic cliffhanger ending.  Even the spells, the magic in and of itself seems believable and the works were disguised in a different language which made it all the more believable.

I do highly recommend this to anyone who enjoys fiction, science fiction, stories from the past, epic adventures, and books with dragons.

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