Eragon by Christopher Paolini 

My rating: five stars

Genre: Fantasy

Edition: Audiobook

 Goodreads Summary: One boy… One dragon… A world of adventure. When Eragon finds a polished blue stone in the forest, he thinks it is the lucky discovery of a poor farm boy; perhaps it will buy his family meat for the winter. But when the stone brings a dragon hatchling, Eragon soon realizes he has stumbled upon a legacy nearly as old as the Empire itself. Overnight his simple life is shattered, and he is thrust into a perilous new world of destiny, magic, and power. With only an ancient sword and the advice of an old storyteller for guidance, Eragon and the fledgling dragon must navigate the dangerous terrain and dark enemies of an Empire ruled by a king whose evil knows no bounds. Can Eragon take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders? The fate of the Empire may rest in his hands.

This year I reread Eragon which is what I am basing my review on. I originally read it when it first came out in 2002 and just recently decided that I want to read the whole series. I know this is an unpopular opinion, but I absolutely loved the movie. I have seen it more times than I can count and I am not ashamed to say it. I think this is because I first watched it when I was a lot younger and I was immediately awe-struck by it, so now, as an adult, it reminds me of my childhood and the childlike fascination I had with it. 

I actually really like the audiobook. The reader was okay, a little slow, but I liked his voice and the tone in which he described scenes and actions. I am listening to the second one and it is a lot harder to follow. I think the audiobook for the first one was good for me because I have seen the movie so many times and so I basically know what is going to happen. Whereas, in the second book it is all new to me so the reader is a little hard for me to follow. 

Likes: I love the cast of characters in Eragon. Each character has such depth to them and are all different and unique from each other. Brom was so harsh but humorous, he was a great contrast of a character and definitely one of my favorites. I also really like the magic system and how it is based off of words and their meanings. There is more of that in books now, but I feel that was a relatively new magic system back then and I found it to be unique. 

Dislikes: I guess I was a little confused when it kept going back to the cousin’s point of view. It seems oddly random and like a plot that doesn’t have a purpose. Maybe I am just not seeing why we follow him, and maybe in the later books it starts to make sense, but in this book it just seems to be filler which wasn’t enjoyable. 

Overall, I gave this book five stars. Honestly, I probably shouldn’t rate it that high, but I just have  a love for this world and it brings me back to my childhood when I first read it. And though the movie wasn’t great, it was one of my favorites growing up and so the book brings a sense of nostalgia to me when I read it. The writing of this book was wonderful, the characters were deep, and the story line was complex. With the only negative being the alternate POVs, I am giving this five stars.  


Thunderhead (Arc of a Scythe #2) by Neal Shusterman 

My rating: five stars

Genre: YA, Fantasy

Edition: Audiobook

Goodreads Summary: Rowan has gone rogue, and has taken it upon himself to put the Scythedom through a trial by fire. Literally. In the year since Winter Conclave, he has gone off-grid, and has been striking out against corrupt scythes—not only in MidMerica, but across the entire continent. He is a dark folk hero now—“Scythe Lucifer”—a vigilante taking down corrupt scythes in flames.

Citra, now a junior scythe under Scythe Curie, sees the corruption and wants to help change it from the inside out, but is thwarted at every turn, and threatened by the “new order” scythes. Realizing she cannot do this alone—or even with the help of Scythe Curie and Faraday, she does the unthinkable, and risks being “deadish” so she can communicate with the Thunderhead—the only being on earth wise enough to solve the dire problems of a perfect world. But will it help solve those problems, or simply watch as perfection goes into decline?

I listened to this book on audiobook and I think this might be the most satisfying audiobook that I have ever listened to. The voice of the reader was so calming yet they were somehow able to make me feel as if I was really there – to where I was sitting on the edge of my seat towards the end.

Likes: I don’t know how Neal came up with a world like this, it is such a unique but logical idea. I feel like so many people want immortality but don’t realize the negative effects that would take place and the fact that we would have to somehow control the population. Though the idea of Scythes is dark, I love it. The twists and turns in this book were so surprising and disarming, the direction that it went wasn’t a direction that I saw it going at all – though that’s not a bad thing. There was a lot of political intrigue in the book which adds another layer to the world and the book expands upon the effect the end of the first book has on the story. 

Dislikes: There were a few confusing and slower parts when a third character’s point of view comes into play. This character does some things that I didn’t necessarily understand, though I realize that it was most likely on purpose. That is honestly the only negative thing I can think of for this book. It would say that it was too long but the pacing and the different plots with multiple POVs kept it entertaining the entire time.

Overall, I gave this book five out of five stars because I would honestly read it over and over again. I thought Scythe was complex and well-thought out, but I was definitely not ready for Thunderhead. This book blew me away with the beautiful writing, intricate plots, and jaw-dropping plot twists. I would recommend this book to everyone, just make sure to brace yourself!