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Eragon (Inheritance) Hardcover

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 710L (What's this?)
  • Series: Inheritance (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf (June 25, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375826688
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375826689
  • Product Dimensions: 2.6 x 3.6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3,337 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,185 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews Review

Here's a great big fantasy that you can pull over your head like a comfy old sweater and disappear into for a whole weekend. Christopher Paolini began Eragon when he was just 15, and the book shows the influence of Tolkien, of course, but also Terry Brooks, Anne McCaffrey, and perhaps even Wagner in its traditional quest structure and the generally agreed-upon nature of dwarves, elves, dragons, and heroic warfare with magic swords.

Eragon, a young farm boy, finds a marvelous blue stone in a mystical mountain place. Before he can trade it for food to get his family through the hard winter, it hatches a beautiful sapphire-blue dragon, a race thought to be extinct. Eragon bonds with the dragon, and when his family is killed by the marauding Ra'zac, he discovers that he is the last of the Dragon Riders, fated to play a decisive part in the coming war between the human but hidden Varden, dwarves, elves, the diabolical Shades and their neanderthal Urgalls, all pitted against and allied with each other and the evil King Galbatorix. Eragon and his dragon Saphira set out to find their role, growing in magic power and understanding of the complex political situation as they endure perilous travels and sudden battles, dire wounds, capture and escape.

In spite of the engrossing action, this is not a book for the casual fantasy reader. There are 65 names of people, horses, and dragons to be remembered and lots of pseudo-Celtic places, magic words, and phrases in the Ancient Language as well as the speech of the dwarfs and the Urgalls. But the maps and glossaries help, and by the end, readers will be utterly dedicated and eager for the next book, Eldest. (Ages 10 to 14) --Patty Campbell

From Publishers Weekly

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 © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

More About the Author

Christopher Paolini was born on November 17, 1983 in Southern California. He has lived most of his life in Paradise Valley, Montana with his parents and younger sister, Angela. As a child, he often wrote short stories and poems, made frequent trips to the library, and read widely. The idea of Eragon began as the daydreams of a teen. Christopher's love for the magic of stories led him to craft a novel that he would enjoy reading. The project began as a hobby, a personal challenge; he never intended it to be published. All the characters in Eragon are from Christopher's imagination except Angela the herbalist, who is loosely based on his sister. Christopher was fifteen when he wrote the first draft of Eragon. He took a second year to revise the book and then gave it to his parents to read. The family decided to self-publish the book and spent a third year preparing the manuscript for publication: copyediting, proofreading, designing a cover, typesetting the manuscript, and creating marketing materials. During this time Christopher drew the map for Eragon, as well as the dragon eye for the book cover (that now appears inside the Knopf hardcover edition). The manuscript was sent to press and the first books arrived in November 2001. The Paolini family spent the next year promoting the book at libraries, bookstores, and schools in 2002 and early 2003. In summer 2002, author Carl Hiaasen, whose stepson read a copy of the self-published book while on vacation in Montana, brought Eragon to the attention of his publisher, Alfred A. Knopf, which is part of Random House. Knopf published Eragon in August 2003. Eldest, which continues the adventures of Eragon and the dragon Saphira was published in August 2005, and in December 2006, Fox 2000 released their movie adaptation of Eragon in theaters around the world.

Amazon Author Rankbeta 

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#45 in Books > Teens
#45 in Books > Teens

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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See all 3,337 customer reviews
This book will keep you reading until the last page.
5th Grader
This is a well paced thought out book with interesting characters and enough plot development and action to keep you interested.
K. Gray
Things like that happen, and although there are a few too many of them in Eragon, it's not THAT bad.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1,894 of 2,466 people found the following review helpful By B. Capossere TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 14, 2003
Format: Hardcover
What you almost always hear first about this book is "wow, it was written by a 17-yr-old". And the author is fully deserving of the respect and admiration he gets--it is indeed an impressive book for a 17-year-old to have written. What he probably should not have gotten was a publishing contract, since while it is impressive for a 17-yr-old, it is less than impressive for a published work of fiction.
If an adult had written and published this, I would have been disgusted (as I was with the Sword of Shannara) with the clear calculation that had gone into the work: "ok, I'll take a lot of Tolkien, a lot of McCaffery, a good amount of Leguin, some Dragonlance, some Star Wars, etc. It will be a can't miss book." Since it's the product not of an adult but of a teenager, it comes across much more positively--as a work of fiction by someone who has read lots and absorbed lots of fantasy and simply didn't have the experience (or the good editor) to take out all of his favorite parts of other works. How can I dislike or be too critical of someone who so obviously loved some of my own favorite authors, loved them so much that they simply took over his book through I'm guessing no fault of his own.
And that in a nutshell is the problem with Eragon. The story is cliched, formulaic and barely passable as are the characters and the language is simply what you would expect from a somewhat precocious teen fan of adult fantasy. If you have any experience in the field of fantasy at all, reading Eragon will feel like a visit to Las Vegas (though not so tacky)--sure you can see New York and Paris and Italy, but they are mere shadows of the real thing. So McCaffery's telepathic link between dragon and rider is here, but not the powerful emotionality of her (especially earlier) works.
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93 of 121 people found the following review helpful By nelyk on May 25, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Everyone here seems to be extremely divided in their views of this book, and I'm afraid I fall in the dislike camp.

Okay, let's start with the plot. I must admit it is quite enjoyable, if you are in such unlikely circumstances that you are both inclined to like fantasy, and have not read most of the modern classics in said genre; or, perhaps, you have to have read enough awfully-written stories to know cliches when you see them. Basically, Eragon embarks upon a quest for revenge against shadow forces he doesn't know much about, but which will undoubtedly have something to do with his 'mysterious past.'

While most people mention fantasy books as inspiration, I find Eragon's plot more reminiscent of Star Wars than of anything else. There's the dead order of peace-keepers with amazing powers, the main character's mysterious past (Who's his father? He doesn't know!), the magical power, the old man with long-dead secrets of the past, which of course he teaches to this headstrong youth without really bothering about whether he's _good_ or not, and most tellingly, the destruction of the boy's farm and death of his uncle, which in both Star Wars and Eragon sets the main character off on a quest of revenge. Just thank heaven there's no C3P0...

In terms of concepts, there are very few original ideas, either. Paolini draws from Tolkien's works, not just Lord of the Rings but background materials as well, and, I am told, Anne McCaffrey's (sorry if I misspelled that) Pern books. Personally, I can't stand McCaffrey's writing, which is why I can't speak for myself on that one. Anyway, all of the races are almost exactly the same, down to the origins of the elves across the sea (Tolkien came up with that one, folks!
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110 of 144 people found the following review helpful By A. C. Longtin on September 26, 2005
Format: Hardcover
I teach Gifted middle school students and was urged by many students to read this. So I picked up a copy and was almost instantly transported to a magical, far-off land- Middle Earth, with a fantastical storyline- Star Wars. Yes, it is admirable for a 17 year old, but fiction cannot be measured against the age of the author, it must be measured against other great books, regardless of author's age.

When I spoke to one of my students about how similar this storyline was to Star Wars, he asked how. So, I started a two-column list as I read. I now present this to you:


****Keep in mind that it is not EXACT, but that many circumstances are similar. For instance, another character is the son of a bad guy, but the "son of the bad guy" is still in this story. Also keep in mind that this list was created as I read, so several revelations happen in the order they occurred.

1. 1st scene: Female elf magically transports a dragon egg, hiding it from evil doers. (Princess Leia sends a droid to an escape pod, hiding it from evil doers.)

2. Eragon lives on farm with uncle. (Luke lives on farm with aunt and uncle.)

3. Eragon's parentage unknown. (Luke's parentage unknown.)

4. Riders possess magical powers and were wiped out by Galbatorix. (Jedi possess magical powers and were wiped out by Vader and the Emperor.)

5. Galbatorix is a former Rider who enlisted another to destroy Riders. (Vader is a former Jedi who was enlisted to destroy the Jedi.)

6. The Empire rules all and it threatened by a small, mysterious band (Vardens) who "constantly raided and attacked the Empire.
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