Brisingr Chapters 29 & 30

These chapters are called ‘a forest of stone’ and ‘the laughing dead’.

And we’re at a dwarf city and everyone is cheering. Why? Because they’re just so happy to see Eragon. Hurray for the guy who’s dragon broke the giant sapphire, hurray for the hero who let the dwarf king die. Maybe this time he can introduce a brand new plague to the little people and decimate their numbers. Then those that survive will build a statue to him.

In the brief time Eragon’s been away, Orik got married to an obsequious dwarf woman who tells Eragon she’s always welcome in her house. Maybe dwarves are extremely passive aggressive and everything they’re saying to Eragon is going over his head.

‘Your always welcome here Eragon.’ ‘Well thanks. I’m just glad you’re not mad about all the dead dwarves.’ ‘Mad about dead dwarves? Perish the thought, just like that band of merry first aid dwarves that were busy tending the wounded.’ ‘Er, yeah. Sorry about that, again.’ ‘Don’t waste another thought over it. Who could have predicted that a stray jet of dragon’s breath would have set them alight so easily?’

Oh, and do you remember why Eragon was supposed to visit the dwarves? Something about facilitating the selection of the new dwarf king. It was supposed to be important, last I recalled. Don’t worry about it though, they went ahead and picked Orik while Eragon was absent.

Well, I guess that means that Eragon will be heading over to elfland to complete his training by watching Yoda curl up and die. Yup, nothing more to do while in this random dwarf city, right? Time to say your goodbyes and head off into the sunset.

Wrong, wrong, wrong as always Vivi. Eragon figures that he’s got time to hang around and join in the party. See, apparently the dwarf king is supposed to throw a party for everyone in town when they get married and Orik is supposed to be Bill Gates cut off at the knees. That means he’s throwing a celebration that’s going to last a full week.

Hey guys, isn’t there a war on or something? And what about the Varden being strapped for cash? I know the dwarves are an autonomous unit that fights alongside them but even so, war costs money. Surely the gold spent on a lavish shindig might be better put towards outfitting dwarves and buying supplies. Maybe you can throw a huge celebration once Gabby is hanging from the gibbet and being used as a makeshift piñata by every apple cheeked street urchin with a persistent cough.

There a boring contest going on and Orik explains how dwarf wives are like the executive producers of the dwarven race. They’re the ones that keep everything in order so the boys can run around dying dramatically and shaking their axes at the neighbors. I’d say it’s a little late to try and build up interest in the dwarves, Chris. You’ve already made them as unnecessary as a fire extinguisher in the Mariana trench.

Orik asks if Eragon would like to see a forest made of stone. Why sure, how’s tomorrow? Why no, my itinerary isn’t looking very full at all. I’d be delighted to take a walk through a petrified forest. Which they proceed to do while Orik gabs on and on about how they’re uncovering these rock trees slowly.

Eventually he mentions that things aren’t all peace and harmony among the bearded ladies. A bunch of the clan leaders are arguing to pull out of the war because it’s unwinnable. After all, they don’t have anything nearly large enough to take on Megatyroshka once Gabby rolls it out of the capital. They’re on the verge of a clan war about it because Orik wants to keep fighting even though Eragon admits there’s no way he and Saphira could even put a dent in Gabby.

Pardon me Chris, I get that you’re trying to tell us there’s disagreement among the dwarves but you’re making no sense again. Why did they pick Orik to be the king then if most of them wanted to back out? Orik even stated that he was choosen because they all thought it was best if there was someone in charge who’d continue the policies of the previous king. Doesn’t that go against their argument? What, are there just a bunch of dwarves that like to stir up trouble but cave when asked to put their convictions on the line? What are they, member of congress?

Oh wait, apparently Orik’s not king, just clan chief. Damn it Chris, you’re failing to make yourself clear here. Then there’s an exchange about loyalty and support that can be summed up thusly. ‘Will you support me for class president, Eragon?’ ‘No.’ ‘Why not?’ ‘Because I don’t feel like it.’ ‘Please? If you don’t I’ll banish you.’ ‘Don’t threaten me, I do the threatening around here.’ ‘Alright then don’t offer support for anybody else, okay?’ ‘Okay.’ ‘Good, now let’s go get some ice cream.’

Then we switch back to Roran, because there’s nothing quite as entertaining as watching Eragon’s retarded cousin fumble his way up the ranks of the Varden. As it is, he’s busy watching some Imperials from the bushes. I guess voyeurism is a popular hobby in Alagaësia, at least among the farming community.

Roran tells Carn the magician that he’s got a bad feeling about this. Apparently Roran took a correspondence course in military tactics while he was working on his dad’s turnip farm because he says their camp is poorly placed or it’s a trap. Just how the hell does Roran know this? He spent the first eighteen years of his life performing manual labor. He’s never even fought anyone until a couple of months ago when the Imperials mistook Cap Hurt for the premier spring break destination.

I would accept it if you just said he had a bad feeling, Chris. He could just have a hunch that something was wrong and I’d be willing to roll with it. But no, you have to make every one of your favorites into some kind of genius who instantly becomes the best at whatever they do.

Carn uses Solar Flare and blinds everyone just before they charge in and strike. Roran gets knocked down and stabs the guy trying to choke him only to find it doesn’t seem to affect them. Then he stabs the soldier in the head and kills him. Because as we all know only a head wound kills them. Unfortunately Roran forgets rule two and doesn’t double tap. The zombie soldier kills Roran and the last of Eragon’s family dies unceremoniously in the middle of nowhere.

They manage to defeat the zombies without waking the witch. Until one of them that looked dead leaps up and hacks of the hand of mister drill instructor. Being as he’s supposed to be a badass he just ignores is and stabs the guy then tells the magician to never mind trying to attach his hand. He doesn’t need healing, the sheer presence of his mustache will force a hand out of the stump with his raw manliness. In the meantime he has magic boy try to save a couple of Varden soldiers. Wow Chris, you really know how to hook a reader….into putting your book down and doing something else.

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2 Responses to Brisingr Chapters 29 & 30

  1. Of course Eragon has time to go do whatever with Orik! He has the Gary Stu power of stopping the plot at will! … And has apparently been abusing that power since the start.

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