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Eragon: Book One (The Inheritance Cycle)
Eragon: Book One (The Inheritance Cycle)
by Christopher Paolini
Edition: Hardcover

10 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars One boy...One dragon....A world of boredom, 23 May 2004
Plot: a boy called Eragon finds a dragon egg, it hatches, and a series of events lead to his world turning upside down. Prepare for a (boring, to be frank) tale of magic, evil and dragons.
Firstly I must say that this book could have been so much better. Paolini is somewhat inexperienced, and his writing style is no way as developed and mature as some writers, like Philip Pullman. Sometimes the sentences do not make any grammatical sense - let me give you an example:
"Sorry," apologized Brom.
Now, you don't have to say apologized, because sorry implies you are apologizing; therefore it makes the word completely redundant.
Another major issue is the plot. Sometimes I had to prise my eyes open - everything is so obvious! There are no twists and turns, and sometimes it's like trying to smash down a steel wall with a wooden hammer (which is impossible, if you haven't already guessed so). Eragon is no masterpiece, and if Paolini thinks just mixing up names from other books and putting them into someone else's story is original, he has another thing coming. The name Eragon is actually taken from the word dragon, but some speculate that it also relates to Aragorn from Lord of the Rings.
The characters - oh, God, there're awful. Apart from Saphira (Eragon's dragon) who's smug. Eragon cannot be so eloquent for a fifteen year-old who's grown up on a farm! He talks like some knd of scholar, for goodness' sake! Unlike involving stories like Harry Potter, Eragon's characters could be swapped for cardboard cutouts and you would never notice the difference.
So there it is: my verdict. Don't EVER waste your hard-earned money on fan fictions like this.


Abhorsen
Abhorsen
by Garth Nix
Edition: Hardcover

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark magic and tales of destiny - what more could you want?, 25 April 2004
This review is from: Abhorsen (Hardcover)
Before elaborating on Abhorsen, you have to read Lirael first to fullyunderstand the plot, as the two books share the same characters andstoryline, unlike the original Sabriel, which is a novel that is on itsown.
This is a fantastic book, incredibly satisfying, and by the end, Ihad a feeling of great contentment. Garth Nix is superb with his creationof the Old Kingdom and Charter Magic, and he uses the ideas to greateffect. The identities of the Disreputable Dog and the elusive Mogget arerevealed, and the terrible force that threatens to destroy the world isunmasked.
The plot: Lirael, the Abhorsen-in-Waiting (the currentAbhorsen is Sabriel; Abhorsens keep the Dead dead, so to stop themdestroying Life itself) and Prince Sameth embark on a quest to saveSameth's friend, Nick, who is ignorantly bringing about the end of theworld. They are helped by the Disreputable Dog and Mogget, two elusivecharacters who are as mysterious as ever (Mogget is great - I love hissarcasm). Other characters include Hedge, the necromancer (enemies of theAbhorsen who raise the Dead and use them for their own purposes}who isstrangely helping Nick, and there is Sabriel and Touchstone, the Abhorsen,who is also Queen of the Old Kingdom, and the King of the Old Kingdom,whose lives hang in the balance after the explosive beginning.
This isan excellent read, very entertaining and interesting. Even though it isthe last book in this trilogy, I hope that Garth Nix will write more booksof this kind - he is a true master of storytelling.


The Cats of Seroster (Piccolo Books)
The Cats of Seroster (Piccolo Books)
by Robert Westall
Edition: Mass Market Paperback

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting - ironic, really., 26 Sept. 2003
This book, although old, is very modern and is slightly obscure. Ironically, performing some research into Egyptian words, I have found that the word "Miw" is translated as cat. It seems that the author has performed detailed research into the Egyptian culture, and incorperates this into the framework of the Cats of Seroster. At times I sometimes get lost in the plot, although this is compensated by the imagination and realism in the book. It has inspired me to write my own book based on Egyptian culture and myth, which the Cats of Seroster always persuades me to continue writing.


The Amber Spyglass
The Amber Spyglass
by Philip Pullman
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful - Just a gem!, 17 Aug. 2003
This review is from: The Amber Spyglass (Paperback)
The Amber Spyglass is the best book in the trilogy, the characters intricate and perplexing, the ideas original and almost harrowing.
The problem is, obviously, that devout christians will be offended, well, I don't mind because I'm very anti-Christian anyway. The idea is that in a parallel world the Church (The Magnesium) is an all powerful body based in Geneva, intent on destroying "Dust" which they believe to be original sin. Actually. Dust is the particles of inquisitive nature, namely the intelligence adult human possess and children don't, and they possess Dust when they lose innocence. It is a compelling book on a grand scale, almost wondering if the church could become an all power body in our world, and perceive to destroy all.
Many Christians believe the ideas in this book are proposterous, and that Pullman's ego has run wild, but relentlessly, they will never come to the realisation that it is a warning in fiction. It is a masterpiece, which I may have implyed already, well worth the £6.99 I paid for it, and I would have paid much more for the book.
I wish not to make any plot spoilers, but simply to say that I highly recommend this book. It's well worth the money.


Shadowmancer
Shadowmancer
by G.P. Taylor
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

18 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Please - some originality for once!, 17 Aug. 2003
This review is from: Shadowmancer (Paperback)
Shadowmancer is simply too fast paced, the ending is in two pages, and has the distinctive feeling it has been rushed. It is very obvious that the writer is a devout Christian (A vicar, ironically) and denouces all other religions apart from Christianity. The characters are not great, and are stereotypes - a band of "good" people fighting against a single "bad" person. The Christ like character is obvious - Raphah, and the corrupt servant of the devil Obadiah Demurral, who is one of the only characters who is portrayed well, and at points the writer makes the hatred well up against him.
I was very puzzled after reading the last few pages, mainly because I was in shock of the rushed, unexplained, shaky ending, which was inconclusive (opening the door for a sequel?). There were also points in which scenes jumped onto the next, almost cinematic, in effect. The characters, particularly Jacob Crane, I could not relate with for the lack of emotion in the writing, and there was a gaping hole for description in many parts.
Compared to the likes of Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials", it does not fare very well at all. I just wanted to add that the adverts for this book are deceptive; my friend saw a poster on the Underground stating that Shadowmancer was "better than You-Know-Who" clearing referring to J.K Rowling's Harry Potter. I would give Harry Potter five star yet I gave Shadowmancer two.
A pretty average read.


Star Fox Adventures
Star Fox Adventures

4.0 out of 5 stars Good Game., 6 April 2003
This review is from: Star Fox Adventures (Video Game)
Generally, Rare have given a brilliant last game, although the gameplay is not wonderful.The graphics are astounding, and the detail on the characters is incredible. I would recommend it to any gamer.


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