Friday, February 6, 2009


Brisingr by Christopher Paolini was originally published in 2008. My hardcover copy has 748 pages, not including the notes at the back. Let me be honest, this was a struggle to finish. I would have set it aside long before finishing it but I felt I had something invested in reading the series after reading the first two books, Eragon and Eldest. Part of my struggles with Brisingr early on is basically the fact that Paolini's fallen back on magic curing everything. Wounded? Fix it like new! Problems in battle? Let's think up a spell! If characters are truly hurt, wounded, struggling to overcome some huge malevolent foe, it makes for a richer novel, in my opinion. I also grew weary of all the characters having the same voice. My favorite line in a review of Brisingr at Amazon summed it up nicely when he wrote, "Also, are we gonna SEE Galbatorix before this series ends? There is an evil EMPEROR in this evil empire, correct?"

Paolini is a young writer and since he was homeschooled, I wish him the best. I can't help but think his best is maybe yet to come. The first two books were good. This one is hugely bloated. I don't know if Paolini got carried away thinking about some of his own PR or if the publisher was thinking of profits, but someone should have told him to edit it all down and stick with the original idea of a trilogy. Now, this is just my opinion as an old woman who is NOT part of the target audience for his books. And I'm not really interested in fantasy sci fi or dragon books in general. If you are a rabid fan, you'll hate this review and read it anyway. If you've managed to hold off on reading the first two books, my advice would be to wait and see if the fourth is really the end to the series. No rating.


"Eragon stared at the dark tower of stone wherein hid the monsters who had murdered his uncle, Garrow." first sentence

"The smell now, with both Lethrblaka present, resembled the sort of overpowering stench one would get from tossing a half-dozen pounds of rancid meat into a barrel of sewage and allowing the mixture to ferment for a week in summer." pg. 42


Literary Feline said...

It's really too bad that this one isn't better. I have only read the first book in the series and am debating whether to continue on. Thank you for the review!

Lori L said...

The YA fans of the series may not be willing to admit that this book isn't as good as the first two. It really has me questioning if I even want to read the fourth book...