Reviews

Eldest by Christopher Paolini

readingryan14's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging inspiring fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.25

hobbit826's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging hopeful inspiring mysterious tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5

lindseyanne25's review against another edition

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adventurous emotional tense medium-paced

3.25

kathrynmorrison's review against another edition

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adventurous emotional hopeful inspiring lighthearted sad
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0

rose_eh's review against another edition

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adventurous dark emotional tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes

4.25

motionocean's review against another edition

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5.0

Gråt og lo!

_aoibheann_'s review against another edition

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adventurous emotional tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.25

smacmart1's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging emotional medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

savannah53's review against another edition

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4.0

This one really does improve from the first book! I haven’t read these books in over 10 years so many of the details have been lost to me and I’m enjoying the story all over again.
Even though the first book was more eventful plot-wise, I enjoyed Eldest more, particularly the character development of both Eragon and Roran.

kcrawfish's review against another edition

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4.0

Ah, what a reread!

Yes issues abound, and I’ll try and alternate bad and good, with some of the largest issues/things I enjoyed, and then end on a happy note. Bare with me for I really believe it deserved every one of its 4 stars.

1. Compared with the first book, Eldest’s plot suffers and is almost boring for the entire the first half. It lacked the punchiness and pacing of Eragon, though it does remedy this in the second half. We’re treated to a lot of world building (which I love) but at the expense of action. There’s just so much the author tries to fit in on top of each other, leaving us reading exposition rather than action.

2. The writing is vastly improved! As someone who relishes worldbuilding and the unique voice of my characters, I really enjoyed basking in the words of the book. It’s fun! It’s what kept me up until 2am last night reading. My beloved characters, this beloved world, I’m happy to see you stand the test of years.

3. The elves were as preachy as I remembered, seemingly a vassal for Paloni’s personal outlook on life and geared toward the readers rather than Eragon. It didn’t seem organically grown from the world, but like the writer decided “I want the elves to have these views (ie ‘my views on what ideal humans would think’), and I’m going to give it to them, wether or not it makes sense in the context of Alagaësia.” The only belief that seemed to come organically was the vegetarianism, although by the logic of it, elves should try and subsist on sunlight, because they can enter plant’s consciousnesses as well as animals, and must feel their deaths. I’m not going to bore you and go through point by point listing the things that seemed out of place, if you read it (even if you personally agree with the author) you’ll see for yourself the awkward abruptness of them. It lessened my enjoyment of Eragon’s time with the elves.

4. As the story expands and the plot engulfs the entire country, we’re given additional plot threads to compensate. I loved these additions, getting a dose of the everyday people in the empire, the Varden’s political movements, and a healthy dose of magic and swordplay with Eragon. This improved the pacing, and added textures and character to the tale, helping the struggle with Galbatorix truly feel global.

5. I do think the cover is a bit of a spoiler. Although, given the option between the current arrangement or swapping this and the third book’s covers, I’m not sure which would work better, so you get a pass, Eldest.

6. The plot, once it does pick up from its brief slump, is wickedly twisting and fun. I’m at an advantage, already knowing the plot, but I still devoured this book. When I picked it up yesterday, I couldn’t find the heart to put it down until 2 am, it so gripped me.

I just really love this world. I think it’s worth a read, and it was the first series I read without anyone/school pushing or prodding my small 5th grader self to do so. Strange how a book I read so young, is still as fun now!