My initial response after finishing this book was that it was Epic. I’m not saying it was the best book I’ve ever read, but there was so much that occurred in this book that one could only categorize it as epic.
I quickly realized as I read this story that I would need to take some notes if I was to be able to review this story adequately. My memory is pretty good, but there were certain pieces to the story I wanted to ensure I remembered and I knew I wouldn’t remember if I relied upon myself.
The beginning of the story jumped right into an immense battle of extreme importance. Watch for the death of a key character by an unexpected set of villains during The Battle of the Burning Plains. This battle begins much of the remainder of the story. Many other authors might have simply saved this battle for near the end of their story and focused much of their attention on building towards it. I liked the confidence Paolini had in his story to throw such a great battle near the beginning.
Shortly after the Battle of the Burning Plains we jump right into Roran and his attempt to rescue his true love Katrina from the Ra’zac. This, along with The Battle of the Burning Plains was so enthralling and came so quickly in the book. It was refreshing to have so much action so quickly.
After this, I noted that the book started to droll on a bit. One can’t expect to be on the edge of their seat forever I guess. It took until about page 300 to get back into some real action which by this time was much appreciated. The other thing that bugged me was the the seemingly new style of narrative from the Saphira. Paolini had her speaking in very choppy hyphenated speak which was truly odd. I don’t remember it being in the first two books this style of speech that the dragon takes on. To me, it was distracting and there wasn’t any real explanation as to why she had begun speaking like this.
I enjoyed the moment Eragon is tasked with replacing Zar’roc for reasons you will find out in The Battle of the Burning Plains section of the book. He is forced to choose a dwarf made sword which of course doesn’t suit him very well. Eragon must alter the way he fights because of the lower quality weapon.
The portion of the story I was most impressed with, however, was when Eragon receives his own sword, made for him. This, in my opinion, was fantasy writing at its absolute best. Paolini wove a beautiful story that recounts the actual forging of the sword along with the most unique method for performing the feat which in my opinion will go down as the most creative piece of fantasy story telling I’ve experienced thus far. It is truly difficult in this saturated Sci-Fi/Fantasy genre to come up with something truly unique and I feel Paolini did so magnificently with this portion of the story.
I’m still debating if I would consider this the best of the 3 of the Eragon books I’ve read thus far. It is definitely very close to the best. Even the lull in action was more than forgivable and some of which was explained later in the story to give reason to the need for the details. I would highly recommend reading this book (read the first 2 before of course).