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Brisingr: Inheritance, Book III

Review

Brisingr: Inheritance, Book III

Still a boy and not yet a man, he is one of the greatest Dragon Riders and bravest of warriors. Eragon is on the edge of many discoveries and great changes. Though his sword has been taken by Murtagh, he still fights with the Varden against the madness of Galbatorix as they try to save the kingdom of Alagaesia. Shamed by the knowledge that he and Murtagh are brothers (both share Morzon for their father), he longs to understand more of his past. As a Dragon Rider, he continues to learn, to test himself and to push all of his limits with the help of Saphira. The beautiful, dangerous Saphira is only one of four dragons left. She is his constant companion. Without her, Eragon knows that he, like Galbatorix, would go mad. There is nothing they do not share --- or so he thinks.

“To know that you were with one who cared for you, and who understood every fiber of your being, and who would not abandon you in even the most desperate of circumstances, that was the most precious relationship a person could have, and both Eragon and Saphira cherished it.”

On the battlefield, always the unexpected happens. Sometimes his spells, his magic, his strength are enough to save them. Sometimes the soldiers of Galbatorix are more demon than man, and in one battle with his ally, King Orrin, they encounter the following:

“The man was a soldier of medium height, with a purple birthmark on his neck and brown hair plastered flat by the helmet he had been wearing. His shield was a splintered ruin. His sword was notched, bent, and broken, missing the last six inches. River mud caked his mail hose. Blood sheeted from a gash along his ribs. An arrow fletched with white swan feathers had the shaft buried in the hard dirt. From the man's throat, a horrid gurgling laugh emanated. It rose and fell with a drunken cadence, pitching from note to note as if the man were about to begin shrieking with horror.”

Though his cousin, Roran Stronghammer, has united with Katrina, he remains one of Eragon’s true friends. Roran is not only brave but a natural leader. He proves himself time after time to be indispensable to Nasuada's armies. Still playful as boys, both Eragon and Roran are ready to sacrifice anything for their love of Alagaesia.

Despite all his successes as a great warrior, Eragon is in need of his most important weapon: his own sword. Not until a number of battles are fought, much blood shed and many sacrifices made does Eragon finally meet one of the most renowned of sword makers --- Rhunon-elda. This is where another story begins:

“A sword should feel like an extension of your arm, as if it had grown out of your very flesh. You shouldn't have to think about how you want it to move: you should simply move it as instinctively as an egret his beak or a dragon her claws. The perfect sword is intent incarnate: what you want, so it does.”

In this third book of the Inheritance Cycle, more surprising secrets are revealed and readers get even better acquainted with Selena Black Hand, Eldunari, Tamerlein, Glaedr, Oromis, Fairth, Memoa Trees, Snowfire, Ra'zacs, Urgals, scrying mirrors, crossbows, Carn, Nasuada, Trial of the Long Knives, Shrrgs, Elva, Solembum, Angela, spells, Arya, true names, Thorm and brisingr --- and so much more.

Christopher Paolini has developed his characters more deeply and brought an even greater intensity to the action throughout. Very helpful information is given at the end of the book on the origin of names, a pronunciation index and listings of languages from the ancient, the dwarf, the Nomad and the Urgal.

When readers are finished with BRISINGR, not only will they be dying for the next installment (they will probably want to read this one again just for fun), they undoubtedly will want a dragon --- especially one like Saphira.

Reviewed by Sally M. Tibbetts on September 20, 2008

Brisingr: Inheritance, Book III
(The Inheritance Cycle #3)
Christopher Paolini On Writing

  • Publication Date: September 20, 2008
  • Genres: Fantasy
  • Hardcover: 763 pages
  • Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf
  • ISBN-10: 0375826726
  • ISBN-13: 9780375826726