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Eragon
2003
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When fifteen-year-old Eragon comes to learn that he is a gifted Dragon Rider, he realizes that his destiny is to fight the evil powers that will bring complete destruction to the Empire and so leaves his quiet life as a farm boy to succeed in his one true mission in life, in a deluxe edition which includes a foldout map, an expanded pronunciation guide, and an excerpt from the next book in the trilogy. - (Baker & Taylor)

In Alagaèesia, a fifteen-year-old boy of unknown lineage called Eragon finds a mysterious stone that weaves his life into an intricate tapestry of destiny, magic, and power, peopled with dragons, elves, and monsters. - (Baker & Taylor)

Perfect for fans of Lord of the Rings, the New York Times bestselling Inheritance Cycle about the dragon rider Eragon has sold over 35 million copies and is an international fantasy sensation.


Fifteen-year-old Eragon believes that he is merely a poor farm boy—until his destiny as a Dragon Rider is revealed. Gifted with only an ancient sword, a loyal dragon, and sage advice from an old storyteller, Eragon is soon swept into a dangerous tapestry of magic, glory, and power. Now his choices could save—or destroy—the Empire.

“An authentic work of great talent.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Christopher Paolini make[s] literary magic with his precocious debut.”—People

“Unusual, powerful, fresh, and fluid.”—Booklist, Starred

“An auspicious beginning to both career and series.” —Publishers Weekly

A New York Times Bestseller

A USA Today Bestseller

A Wall Street Journal Bestseller

A Book Sense Bestseller - (Random House, Inc.)

Author Biography

Christopher Paolini’s abiding love of fantasy and science fiction inspired him to begin writing his debut novel, Eragon, when he graduated from high school at fifteen after being homeschooled all his life. Both Eragon and Eldest, the second book in the Inheritance trilogy, became instant New York Times bestsellers. Christopher is currently at work on the final volume in the trilogy. He lives in Montana, where the dramatic landscape feeds his visions of Alagaësia.

You can find out more about Christopher and Inheritance at www.alagaesia.com. - (Random House, Inc.)

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Booklist Reviews

/*Starred Review*/ Gr. 7-12. Was the mysterious blue stone that appears out of nowhere sent by accident or is teenage Eragon meant to have it? When a dragon, Saphira, hatches from it, beast and boy connect (in much the same way dragons and riders do in Anne McCaffrey's popular Pern series) and face danger together. In this story, Eragon is thrust into a new role as the first Dragon Rider in more than 100 years who is not under the evil king's control. After the king's ghastly minions kill Eragon's uncle as they search for the teen, Eragon and Saphira, mentored by the village's aged "storyteller," hunt for the killers and, in turn, find themselves being hunted. This unusual, powerful tale, begun when Paolini was 15 (he's now 19) and self-published in 2002 before being picked up by Knopf, is the first book in the planned Inheritance trilogy. It's obvious that Paolini knows the genre well--his lush tale is full of recognizable fantasy elements and conventions. But the telling remains constantly fresh and fluid, and he has done a fine job of creating an appealing and convincing relationship between the youth and the dragon. It's an impressive start to a writing career that's sure to flourish. ((Reviewed August 2003)) Copyright 2003 Booklist Reviews

Booklist Reviews

In most respects, this third chapter in Paolini s Inheritance Cycle feels like the calm before the storm; the majority of the more than 700 pages are dominated by storytelling, plotting, and preparations for battle. If there is a complaint from readers, it will be that Paolini revels too much in long conversations between his characters while action takes a backseat, but fans of the genre will bask in his generosity: the arcana of dwarf election rules, the manhood customs of the Kull, and the finer points on forging a Dragon Rider s sword are all part of what makes the world of Alagaësia so encompassing. The plot picks up as Eragon assists his cousin Roran in rescuing his beloved from the Ra zac, but ultimately the story settles on the Varden s preparations for advancing upon the evil Galbatorix, their attempts to obtain the help of the dwarves, and the continued magic training of Eragon and the dragon Saphira. Most of the combat—and it s brutal, gory stuff—belongs to Roran as he becomes a legendary warrior; Eragon s struggles are more cerebral and involve magic, a difficult thing to dramatize but something Paolini pulls off admirably. In fact, clarity is the author s best asset: few could make such a Tolkienesque universe so manageable. Anyone who couldn t wait for this volume will be just as excited when the upcoming fourth and final chapter appears. Copyright Booklist Reviews 2008.

Booklist Reviews

"In most respects, this third chapter in Paolini's Inheritance Cycle feels like the calm before the storm; the majority of the more than 700 pages are dominated by storytelling, plotting, and preparations for battle. If there is a complaint from readers, it will be that Paolini revels too much in long conversations between his characters while action takes a backseat, but fans of the genre will bask in his generosity: the arcana of dwarf election rules, the manhood customs of the Kull, and the finer points on forging a Dragon Rider's sword are all part of what makes the world of Alagaësia so encompassing. The plot picks up as Eragon assists his cousin Roran in rescuing his beloved from the Ra'zac, but ultimately the story settles on the Varden's preparations for advancing upon the evil Galbatorix, their attempts to obtain the help of the dwarves, and the continued magic training of Eragon and the dragon Saphira. Most of the combat—and it's brutal, gory stuff—belongs to Roran as he becomes a legendary warrior; Eragon's struggles are more cerebral and involve magic, a difficult thing to dramatize but something Paolini pulls off admirably. In fact, clarity is the author's best asset: few could make such a Tolkienesque universe so manageable. Anyone who couldn't wait for this volume will be just as excited when the upcoming fourth and final chapter appears." Copyright 2008 Booklist Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews

This lengthy first novel borrows heavily from its fantasy predecessors but never hatches an original idea. Fifteen-year-old Eragon joins a war against the Empire and journeys across Alagadsia after finding and bonding with a dragon. The endless journeying becomes tedious, dialogue too often substitutes for action, and the shopworn story line lacks narrative drive. Copyright 2004 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews

Eragon and his dragon, Saphira, continue their quest to defeat tyrant magician Galbatorix. Paolini's enthusiasm and transparent love of his own story keep the proceedings (700-plus pages packed with extraneous scenes and dialogue) from bogging down completely. Readers who share his delight will enjoy the full-sense immersion in his world, though even they might cavil at the lightweight climax. Copyright 2009 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Horn Book Magazine Reviews

Eragon the Dragon Rider and his dragon Saphira continue their quest to defeat the tyrant magician Galbatorix, who enslaved a human empire and threatens the elf and dwarf sovereignties of Alagaesia. So entranced is author Paolini with his creation, however, that Book Three spilled into two volumes, this first of which is episodic rather than plot-driven: a daring rescue of his cousin Roran's betrothed; a skirmish against Galbatorix's dragon-rider team Murtagh (Eragon's half-brother) and Thorn; ally Orik's ascension to the kingship of the dwarves; and the forging of Eragon's new sword Brisingr. At the end, Eragon bids farewell to his mentor and mentor dragon, who have joined the resistance. Ironically, the author's self-indulgence may also be his saving grace: if the book's 700-plus pages are packed with extraneous scenes and dialogue, Paolini's enthusiasm and transparent love of his own story keep the proceedings from bogging down completely, and readers who share his delight will enjoy the full-sense immersion in his world. Even they might cavil at the lightweight climax, but Paolini promises that the fourth and final projected volume is "going to be the most exciting installment in the series" -- hopeful words indeed. Copyright 2009 Horn Book Magazine Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews

This solid, sweeping epic fantasy crosses vast geography as it follows 15-year-old Eragon from anonymous farm boy to sword-wielding icon on whose shoulders may rest the fate of Alagaësia. Dragon Riders have died out over the years, leaving the Empire under the iron fist of King Galbatorix; but hunting in the forest one day, Eragon finds a blue stone that soon hatches into his very own dragon. The next months find him learning magic, sword skills, and bits of his land's history. A slight tone of arrogance running through the narrative voice will hardly bother readers busily enjoying the reliable motifs of elegant immortal elves, mining dwarves, a wise elderly man, and a hero of mysterious birth. Replete with histories, names, and languages, this high fantasy with visible Tolkien influence ends with Eragon's first battle and a tempting pointer towards the second installment, when Eragon will visit the unseen elven city and plunge headlong into his destiny. (map, pronunciation key, glossaries of three created languages) (Fantasy. YA) Copyright Kirkus 2003 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews

In the first volume in Paolini's planned Inheritance trilogy, 15-year-old Eragon discovers an odd blue gemstone while exploring an infamous stretch of forest. It is a dragon egg, fated to hatch in his care. Eragon quickly develops a psychic connection with the female dragon that emerges, whom he names Saphira ("His emotions were completely open to her mind, and she understood him better than anyone else"). Eragon narrowly escapes doom with Saphira's help, but the uncle who raised him is killed, setting up a robust revenge/adventure tale. The scope quickly expands: Eragon turns out to be the first of a new generation of Riders, a lodge of legendary dragon-riding warriors killed by the evil King Galbatorix. As a result, he becomes the focal point in a war between Galbatorix's forces and the resistance efforts of the Varden. Paolini, who was 15 years old himself when he began this book, takes the near-archetypes of fantasy fiction and makes them fresh and enjoyable, chiefly through a crisp narrative and a likable hero. He carries a substantial Tolkien influence-fanciful spellings of geographical names, the use of landscape as character, as well as the scale and structure of the story itself. But his use of language dispenses with the floral, pastoral touch in favor of more direct prose. The likeness does not end there: the volume opens with a detailed map of Paolini's world, and ends with a glossary and pronunciation guide for his invented language. An auspicious beginning to both career and series. Ages 12-up. (Aug.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Publishers Weekly Reviews

Makeovers with Mass AppealNew editions spruce up popular titles and bestselling series. Christopher Paolini's Eragon is now available in a deluxe edition, which includes an extensive language/pronunciation guide, a foldout map of Alaga‰sia in blue ink (penned by Paolini) and new artwork by the author. (Aug.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Publishers Weekly Reviews

While exploring the forest, 15-year-old Eragon discovers an odd blue gemstone-a dragon egg, fated to hatch in his care. According to PW, "The author takes the near-archetypes of fantasy fiction and makes them fresh and enjoyable, chiefly through a crisp narrative and a likable hero." Ages 12-up. (Apr.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

PW Annex Reviews

The much-anticipated third book in Paolini's Inheritance Cycle continues to rely heavily on classic fantasy tropes. The novel launches with magician and Dragon Rider Eragon, his cousin Roran and the dragon Saphira on a quest to rescue Roran's betrothed. The cousins soon split up, and Roran undergoes his own series of heroic tests, culminating in a well-choreographed and intense fight against an Urgal (a ram-human hybrid). Eragon, at the same time, encounters treacherous dwarves, undergoes even more training with the elf Oromis and gains a magical sword suitable for a Dragon Rider. The silly revelations about Eragon's background in the previous book, Eldest, are given a new spin near the end, but the change is neither unexpected nor interesting. Predictably, the book concludes with even more character deaths and another battle, but those expecting a resolution will have to wait until the next novel. The cliched journey may appeal to younger readers of genre fiction. Older teens, even those who might have first cut their teeth on Paolini's writing years ago, are less likely to be impressed. Ages 12-up. (Sept.)

School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 5 Up-Eragon, 15, is hunting for wild game when he witnesses a mysterious explosion. At the center of the blast radius he finds a polished blue stone marked with white veins. Brom, the village storyteller, has shown interest in it, so it is to him that Eragon turns when it starts squeaking, then wobbling, and then hatches into a majestic sapphire blue dragon. His decision to keep and raise Saphira starts him on an epic journey of Tolkienesque proportions that is only partially told in the 500 pages of this book. Eragon learns that the Empire's cruel and oppressive king will stop at nothing to get Eragon and Saphira to serve him. Training and traveling with Brom, the teen and dragon learn to work together in war and peace, using a combination of traditional fighting arts and magic. They encounter massive humanoid warriors with savage intentions and are befriended by Murtagh, a human warrior with mysterious ties to the Varden and the Empire. Eventually, they seek refuge with dwarves who harbor the Varden, who exist to free the Empire. Eragon does not approach the depth, uniqueness, or mastery of J. R. R. Tolkien's works, and sometimes the magic solutions are just too convenient for getting out of difficult situations. However, the empathetic characters and interesting plot twists will appeal to the legions of readers who have been captivated by the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy and are looking for more books like it.-Susan L. Rogers, Chestnut Hill Academy, PA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

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