This is the 4th and last of The Inheritance Cycle series by Christopher Paolini. Paolini continues the quest of the Varden to defeat the evil King Galbatorix and rid all of Alagesia of his terror.
The book is long, at 849 pages, it took me a while to finish. That is always my biggest issue with epic stories. Too often, I feel we get too much fluff. Countless times I found myself thinking “Get on with it already.” Most times, however, Paolini found a way to make those details become important to me and I regretted my previous complaints. That’s not to say I enjoyed every little detail, I still think 100 or 200 less pages could have told the same story without losing any quality.
That being said, I felt this was one of the darker of the four books. I began feeling a slight contempt for Roran especially as they went from city to city destroying the Empire’s armies. It felt at times the killing was almost unwarranted. Yes, Galbatorix has enslaved his armies through magic, but I found myself thinking, “Doesn’t that make killing these people all the worse?” It may be a necessary end, but it got difficult, which in my opinion, was the genius of the beginning and middle of the book. To get me, someone who enjoys a good slasher movie/book, to start feeling compassion for the enemy is quite the feat and I tip my hat to Paolini for this.
Inheritance is jam packed with violence, politics, magic, and love, though light on the love which is fine by me, lest the book double in length to go through all of that.
I’m happy to say I’ve finished the series and I would be interested to see what Eragon will do in the future, so I’m hoping Paolini may choose to revisit the world of Alagesia at some point, though I do need a break from it, so maybe in a couple years. I may find myself reading the series again and putting it in my list of books I should simply buy rather than check out from the library.
I give this a 4 of 5 star rating, it losing a star solely for the length of the book and the ending droned on a bit long as well, though I appreciate that it wasn’t left open with the obvious intention of a sequel. Which is why I want one all the more.