I’ve tried, people. I really have. I tried reading Eragon on paper. Now I’ve tried listening to the audio book. I cannot get past chapter three. If any fantasy reader comes into my department saying, “There’s a third one!” I’m the first person to answer back, “Brisingr doesn’t come out until September 20th.” I want to read it and talk to the kids about it. But I just can’t bring myself to wade through this series.

High fantasy and I aren’t on the greatest terms to begin with. While I’m a big fan of many fantasy genres and series, I can only see the word “elven” so many times before my right eye starts to twitch. I have the best intentions to love it, and some of it I truly adore. According to Wikipedia, The Neverending Story counts as high fantasy, and this was my favorite movie AND book as a child. And the world of English fantasy is brimming with goodies on my To Read list-Terry Pratchett, Phillip Pullman, and of course I like to believe that maybe one day I will manage to get through Tolkien. So I have not given up on the great stuff.

But great stuff Eragon is not. Yes, this is heresy to many of my kids and probably many fellow readers out there, too. Sure it’s swell that Paolini became a fantasy superstar at the age of 19. He’s an inspiration to kids everywhere, and I would never tell a kid not to read these books. Or not to write stories and dream of the success he’s had. But I think it’s derivative and actually painful to read. Like a freshman essay, smothered in adverbs and adjectives. Phrases like “with a determined look on her face.” Really? Or the very first line in the book: “Wind howled through the night, carrying a scent that would change the world.” Come on, now.

All I’m saying is, right now my Goodreads To Read list is 230 books long. I’m hanging up the gloves with this one.