By: Christopher Paolini

Warning: This review contains spoilers from Eragon

The Varden prevailed in the battle of Farthen Dûr, and Durza is dead at the cost of Eragon suffering a grievous wound to his back. Despite his pain, Eragon and Saphira must now venture to Du Weldenvarden to train with the elves if he is to stand a chance against King Galbatorix.

While living among the fair folk, Eragon’s mind and body will be pushed to the limit, but the greatest challenge he will face is to put his infatuation with Arya aside for the sake of all Alagaësia. Meanwhile, new alliances will be made, and betrayal is on the wind.

Would it sound ridiculous for me to tell you that I’ve owned this book since it released in 2005, and I’m just now finishing it? To be clear, I’ve tried to finish the book 2 other times before this (once almost succeeding) but never actually succeeded. Third time’s the charm, and now I remember why I didn’t finish it the other 2 times. Wow, this book was slow.

I swear this entire 668-page novel is one large training montage with intermittent info dumps. I stopped being excited to read it by the first 100 pages, but I promised myself I would finish this dang thing this year.

I will say that watching Eragon’s mental and physical progressing through the book was fascinating. I also enjoyed the philosophical themes and debates in some of the sections, but those were too few and far apart in my opinion. That being said, those parts I liked did not change the fact that Eldest is not a page-turner. You aren’t going to be on the edge of your seat like you would with epic fantasy. The book has character, but I’m really hoping the next one is better.

Overall rating: 2.5

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