Thursday, February 26, 2009

Brisingr review

To whom it may concern:

So most everyone has heard of the up and coming writer Christopher Paolini, his book Eragon. His talent for storytelling shook the literary community, as readers and authors alike wondered at a book of Eragon's caliber from such a young author. After Eragon, Paolini released Eldest, it's sequel and second in his intended trilogy. However, soon into writing the third installment our young author realized that his work would require an additional book to be given the series the coverage it needed. So, in the spirit of the American super-size, Christopher Paolini expanded his Trilogy into a Quartet, and released Brisingr the third book in the story.

Brisingr by Christopher Paolini

Summary from Barnes &

“OATHS SWORN . . . loyalties tested . . . forces collide.

Following the colossal battle against the Empire’s warriors on the Burning Plains, Eragon and his dragon, Saphira, have narrowly escaped with their lives. Still there is more at hand for the Rider and his dragon, as Eragon finds himself bound by a tangle of promises he may not be able to keep.

First is Eragon’s oath to his cousin Roran: to help rescue Roran’s beloved, Katrina, from King Galbatorix’s clutches. But Eragon owes his loyalty to others, too. The Varden are in desperate need of his talents and strength—as are the elves and dwarves. When unrest claims the rebels and danger strikes from every corner, Eragon must make choices— choices that take him across the Empire and beyond, choices that may lead to unimagined sacrifice.

Eragon is the greatest hope to rid the land of tyranny. Can this once-simple farm boy unite the rebel forces and defeat the king?”

Here's my take on it:

If you give enough computers to young people across the world, eventually one of them will write something passable as a novel. However, if you allow that author continued access to said computer he or she will most likely end up disappointing their newly formed fan base. Not that Brisingr was a complete disappointment, it was simply less than the level of it's predecessors. Now, don't get me wrong, the book had some great moments, moments of humor, moments of sadness, and moments of magic induced butt-kicking. What it did not have was moments of surprise. The entirety of the book seemed to revolve around Eragon going back and doing all the things fans wanted him to do in the second book. There were even a few cliched moments of “dragons can breathe fire” slapstick. The only part of the book I didn't see coming from four blocks away was the great revelation behind Galbatorix's power.

Ok, but lets not get ahead of ourselves. The book was still an enjoyable read. I put it down at the end with mixed feelings towards where the plot was going (and where it has been for that matter), but still had a sense of enjoyment at having read it. It definitely felt like it was a piece of a whole, that although it may not, on its own be the best book I have ever read, it continued the story line of the series, much like the most recent Bond movie. In the new set of Bond movies Casino Royale blew everyones socks off (Bond can be Blonde?!) and the hype for Quantum of Solace was even more than that of Casino, so all those people who had fallen for Daniel Craig in the first one got their hopes way way up. Unfortunately Quantum of Solace was not at all what they made it out to be, it actually it kind of sucked. But it set up the plot for number 3 really nicely. The same is true of Brisingr. Plenty of exciting plot lines just ready to by used in number four, not as many exciting twists and turns.

3 stars. One star for the *Spoiler* (see below). One star for the writing and story line. And one very sheepish star in the hopes that the next one will be better.


One star for: The death of Oromis. Had to be done, you can't have the Heroes wise and elderly mentor hanging around all the time. He needs to impart his wisdom about the secret powerful artifacts that make the dark lord powerful, and then he has worn out his literary usefulness. Once his usefulness is gone he should be disposed of in some pathetic way, like blown of a tower by Avada Kad--- wait a minute, am I the only one who sees similarities here???


Okay. Well that's all folks, sorry for the mind-numbingly long post, until next time.

Later guys,


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