The Paolini family launches, their official website

We are excited to announce that the Paolini family has launched, the official destination for all things Paolini on the web!

The website has launched with several exciting pieces of content, including introductions to various parts of the website, including the Writers Corner, Educators section, and a video from Christopher discussing his new writing project, a scifi novel!

Lots of exciting content will be added to the website on a regular basis, and while we aren’t ready to reveal what that content will be, we can promise that it will appeal to fans, aspiring writers, and parents/educators. Be sure to check back regularly as several posts will be added to the blog each week.

I am also thrilled to mention that I have been a part of the project since its inception, working closely with the Paolini family to build this new website from the ground up. I will be working on the website as its manager and a contributor of content to both the website and its blog. I am also assisting in the management of their social media accounts, where even more exciting content can be found!

Visit to view all of the great launch content and new blog articles! Be sure to follow @PaoliniOfficial on Twitter and “Like” the Official Facebook page on Facebook for the latest news and updates! Additionally, you can subscribe to the Newsletter for news and announcements forty-eight hours before they hit the official website!


twitter-interview-questionsSocial media is an interesting place: sometimes you’ll find useful information and updates from friends and internet personalities… while other times, you’ll find the weird, the obscure, and the downright bizarre.

Social media also happens to be home to Christopher Paolini’s official Twitter account. Christopher will, on rare occasions, offer fans a fifteen minute session where they can ask him questions and he’ll fire off as many answers as possible. The results are often interesting, revealing, and true to Christopher’s nature, teasing. Christopher touches on Inheritance, Book V, Inheritance Cycle movies, and more!

We’ve compiled the best and most important questions and answers from Christopher’s Twitter account over the past eight months for your viewing pleasure!


Is Angela one of the Grey Folk?
Maaaybe. Maaaybe not.

Christopher: I don’t intend to alter/revisit Inheritance [Book 4] at any point. The book is done and published, and I’m happy with it. […] I still plan on writing Book V, though.
Reference one, reference two

Who is your favorite Inheritance Cycle dragon?

Can you and Brandon Sanderson team up to bring the world of Alagaesia and Sanderson’s world of Alethkar together?
Ha! Who knows? That might be fun.

Read more about Christopher’s “Book V”, potential Inheritance Cycle prequel, and his upcoming scifi book on our “Book V and Beyond” page!

Will we ever find out what happened to the belt of Beloth the Wise?

Will Murtagh ever join Eragon in establishing the new Riders?
Heh. No comment.

Will you ever write a book or series about the dragon/elf war leading to the creation of the Riders?
Possibly, although I’ll probably do Book V first.

Have you started any work on Book V, such as planning?
Book V is completely plotted out. However, I’m writing something else at the moment.

Will there ever be a book about or featuring Murtagh?
Let’s just say we haven’t seen the last of Murtagh. ;-)


Will there ever be more Inheritance Cycle movies?
I hope so! But it’s up to Fox whether they ever do anything with the rights.

Will we ever see an Eldest film as a sequel to the Eragon movie?
Someday, I hope! Although I’d love to see Eragon rebooted first.

What are your thoughts on the Eragon movie?
The film reflected the studio’s vision of the story, just as the books reflect my vision of the story.


Looking back on Eragon, do you have any regrets?
I wish I’d worked in a few more mentions of things I invented later: like the feldûnost and nïdhwal.

How long did it take to write Eragon?
About 2.5 years.


What type of non-fantasy book(s) would you love to write?
Horror. Or romance. You know, one or the other. Techno-thrillers might be fun too.

What do you find to be the hardest part of the writing process?
Waking up and getting my brain to function well enough that I can write clearly.

What would you say are your greatest strengths and weaknesses?
My obsessive attention to detail, which is also my greatest strength. Life is funny like that.

If you could live in any world, Alagaesia or in other books, where would you live?
I’d probably live with my dwarves. They know how to have a good time.

Would you rather own a dragon or be a dragon?
I’d rather own a dragon.

Who is your favorite incarnation of the Doctor from Doctor Who?
Number Four, Nine, and Ten.

Which Hogwarts house would you have been in?

What is your favorite television series?
The Prisoner (the original).

Now we ask: Which was your favorite question and answer from this collection? If you had a chance to ask Christopher a question, what would you ask?

Fans were devastated at the potential loss of a fan-favorite character, Murtagh, at the end of Eragon. Throughout the start of Eldest, it remained clear that the hero from Eragon was gone for good, joining the likes of Brom.

It wasn’t until later in the book that fans realized the exciting yet equally upsetting news: Murtagh was alive and now a Rider himself, but had been turned against Eragon and the Varden by the very man he despised: Galbatorix. With his own dragon and the true name enslavement by the most powerful villain in Alagaesia, Murtagh felt helpless, broken, and through that, driven to follow the commands given to him by his captor in order to save his, and his dragon’s, life.

We first re-encountered Murtagh on the battlefields of the Burning Plains. Eragon and Saphira met him and Thorn in aerial combat shortly after Morzan’s son struck Hrothgar, king of the dwarves, down, ending the run of another fan favorite character.

This piece of fan art, “Thorn versus Saphira” by artist “Ticcy” on DeviantArt, captures the moment in which Saphira, with Eragon atop her, and Thorn, ridden by Murtagh, meet in battle, clawing, biting, and doing anything they can to injure, without killing, the other.

thorn_versus_saphira_by_ticcy-d791wabFrom the chapter in Eldest:

The siege on Eragon’s mind abated as Saphira and the red dragon crashed together, two incandescent meteors colliding head-on. They grappled, kicking each other’s bellies with their hind legs. Their talons produced hideous screeches as they grated against Saphira’s armor and the red dragon’s flat scales. The red dragon was smaller than Saphira, but thicker in his legs and shoulders. He managed to kick her off for a moment, then they closed again, each struggling to get their jaws around the other’s neck.

It was all Eragon could do to keep hold of Zar’roc as the dragons tumbled toward the ground, battering one another with terrible blows from their feet and tails. No more than fifty yards above the Burning Plains, Saphira and the red dragon disengaged, struggling to regain altitude. Once she halted her descent, Saphira reared her head, like a snake about to strike, and loosed a thick torrent of fire.

Now we ask: Did you see it coming – that Murtagh, son of Morzan, was not only alive but would join Eragon as a Dragon Rider? Did you sympathize with Murtagh or hold him in contempt for what he did both to Hrothgar and Eragon?

rider-war-shurtyWhile a story of growth, friendship, adventure, and hardships, the Inheritance Cycle is also, at its core, a story of war. Named the “Rider War” by Inheritance Cycle readers, dozens of skirmishes and battles filled the pages of all four books in the series. With so many battles between races, factions, and nations, one may find it difficult to remember the significance of each.

wiki-article-screenshotFortunately, fans have banded together to create a comprehensive guide and timeline to the Rider War. One of the most interesting parts of the article: the realization that a name for the actual war is never mentioned in the Inheritance Cycle.

The timeline begins with a detailed look at the “Pre-War Violence” leading up to the Rider War, beginning with the “Fall of the Foresworn”, when the Varden hunted down and assassinated most of the dark Riders, to the “Skirmish outside Farthen Dûr”, leading Eragon and company through the Beor Mountains and eventually at the Varden’s door.

The timeline for the Rider War itself begins with the Battle under Farthen Dûr, a defining moment in Eragon and the catalyst for the entire second war against Galbatorix. The timeline, filled with details on location and actions during each battle, covers skirmishes ranging from the Siege of Carvahall and the Battle of the Burning Plains to the Battle of Gilead and ultimately, the Battle of Urû’baen.

The article interestingly makes note of the fact that the Varden and their supporters have never lost a major battle, despite the fact that the Empire’s army significantly outnumbers their own.

The article doesn’t stop there, however; following the Battle of Urû’baen’s detailed account, fans have also compiled a detailed breakdown of the “Aftermath”, including the election of Nasuada as the new leader of Alagaesia and the departure of Eragon and Saphira.

Finally, the article breaks down the factions involved in the conflict, the roles they played in the conflict and their fate in the “Aftermath”.

While many of us have read the series multiple times, a descriptive timeline of conflicts in the series helps add perspective and scale to just how significant the Rider War was.


Now we ask: What was your favorite battle in the series? If you could have participated in one of the battles, which battle would you have participated in and on what side?

10thAnniversaryCoverWe want to thank everyone for their support in our first week back… by giving away a signed copy of the 10th Anniversary Collector’s Edition of Eragon! We had been looking forward to our relaunch for quite a while and were completely overwhelmed by the comments, support, and participation we saw from the Inheritance Cycle community.

We are so thrilled that you have enjoyed the content we’ve released so far and know that if you’re happy with what you’ve seen over the past week, you’ll absolutely love what we have in store for the future. Good news, international fans: we love you just as much, which is why we’re opening this giveaway to international fans as well!

To enter, simply complete as many of the below tasks as you would like. Each task will offer you one entry into the raffle, for a grand total of eight entries into the drawing! The giveaway ends on September 15th!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

We will reveal the winner in this post on September 16th!

alagaesia-minecraft-shurtyA group of dedicated Inheritance fans and Minecraft building pros have embarked on an epic journey: creating the world of Alagaesia, based largely off of Christopher Paolini’s illustrated map and descriptions found within the book, in the popular voxel building video game, Minecraft!

The project’s lead, known as “Nomadic Penguin”, was kind of enough to provide our team with a number of progress photos as well as details on the project and how various areas were built. It’s important to note that the project is in the early stages of development, but it’s both interesting and exciting to see Alagaesia coming to life!

The team began with Christopher’s illustrated map of Alagaesia found within each copy of the Inheritance Cycle. Using the map as a guide, they built on top of the world, first creating the flat land divided by the world’s “biomes” (grasslands, ocean, desert, snow). Once the land was properly divided by biomes, the team set out to begin the 3D aspect of the project – raising the mountains, lowering the ocean and river floors, and more. You can see the biome outlines as well as their early 3D world generation, all built on top of the map, in this image:

Alagaesia's World Map

Some areas of the project, such as Vroengard Island and the Beor Mountains, are further along in development than others. This side-by-side of two different views of Vroengard Island – an aerial view and a 3D view – shows the detail and terrain levels of the island:

Alagaesia's Vroengard Island

The team has so far provided a host of progress pictures showing detailed looks at various in-progress areas of Alagaesia. We’ve compiled all of the photos into one gallery which enables each image is able to be viewed individually, with all of the images offering descriptions of what you’re seeing!

We plan to keep the community updated as the project continues to grow and develop. When available, we’ll share more information, such as how fans can contribute to and explore the project!

Now we ask: What do you think of the progress of Alagaesia in Minecraft so far? If you could explore the world of Alagaesia within a video game, what would be the first location you journey to?

social-media-postShur’tugal has quite the presence online, both on our website and in social media. We’ve put together a helpful guide for those of you who may be interested in joining us outside of Our social media accounts offer fans exclusive access to special content and updates on news and articles before you can find them on the website! It’s worth giving us a “Like” or “follow” if you’re use any of these social networks!

Here’s a map of where to find us:

  • Shur’tugal on Facebook: Our Facebook page offers news, information, images and more! We’re frequently updating the page not only with news and blog posts from the site, but fun Inheritance stuff, including images, trivia, quotes from Christopher and more. Join in on the discussion with fellow fans and enjoy our Inheritance updates by giving the Shur’tugal Facebook page a “Like”.
  • Shur’tugal on Twitter: Sharing the latest news, information, and behind-the-scenes details, Shur’tugal’s Twitter account (@itsshurty) is the account to follow for the latest on all things Paolini and Inheritance!
  • Shur’tugal on Tumblr: We have an active presence on Tumblr sharing all kinds of Inheritance Cycle goodies you won’t want to miss out on! If you’re a Tumblr fan, Shur’tugal’s updates and posts will definitely make a great addition to your dashboard!
  • Mike Macauley on Twitter: Mike Macauley, the man behind, can also be found on Twitter. You may be ask why we’re including him in this list! Well, Mike offers some great behind-the-scenes information, Inheritance-related tweets and updates you won’t find on any of the other accounts, in addition to news on a secret project you’ll all be very interested in!

We aren’t the only ones available on social media, though! Christopher Paolini can be found on several social networks, all of which are updated regularly.

  • Christopher Paolini on Twitter: Christopher’s personal Twitter account is frequently updated, not only with fun, interesting and quirky shares from around the ‘net, but with information related to the Inheritance Cycle and Christopher’s latest projects! Christopher often response to fans tweets as well, so if you’re lucky, the author may just answer one of your questions!
  • Christopher Paolini on Facebook: Christopher’s Facebook page is handled a bit differently from his Twitter account. On Twitter, smaller and less Inheritance-related items are shared. His official Facebook page is a bit more Inheritance-oriented, although you’ll find a lot of great content on his Facebook page that you won’t find elsewhere!

Our sister site,, can also be found on social media! Lytherus covers everything in the realm of fantasy and science fiction, in addition to a fun emphasis on geek culture. Whether you’re into books or movies, video games or television, Lytherus has you covered! Hunger Games, Doctor Who, Legend of Korra, Percy Jackson… you name it, they’re covering it!

  • Lytherus on Facebook: Follow the Lytherus account for news, reviews, and fun editorials as they break! You won’t miss a single piece of fantasy or scifi news with the coverage our staff offers! Plus, discover some new and interesting books, movies, and television shows to watch and enjoy!
  • Lytherus on Twitter: Much like their Facebook page, the Lytherus account offers the latest in news, reviews, and fun editorials the minute they hit the web! You won’t miss out on any of the latest updates in the world of fantasy and science fiction, and as book fans, we know that’s exactly what you’re looking for!

which-character-shurtyReading a series you enjoy is only half of the true experience. The other half, and arguably the most exciting, is transporting yourself into the world you’re exploring. Imagining yourself adventuring alongside your favorite characters and fighting your least favorites adds to the story in a way that the book’s author can only dream about.

We’ve often found ourselves daydreaming about being an elf or a Rider. We’ve daydreamed countless battles and swordfights against our enemies, have rescued our allies, and have befriended some of Alagaësia’s most interesting inhabitants.

Now’s your chance to share with us, and your fellow fans, just who you are in the Inheritance universe!

If you could be a character in the Inheritance cycle, who would you be and why?

To help you better explain your character, your back story, and your motivation, we’ve put together some writing prompts. Feel free to answer any or all of these questions in the comments section! Additionally, you’re more than welcome to add any extra story or information to bring your character to life.

Keep in mind: your character can be from any timeline! If you want to be living during the events of the Inheritance Cycle rather than after it, that’s great! The first Rider war? That works too!

  • What race are you?
  • What is your role, occupation, or hobby? (Mercenary, farmer, pirate, soldier, member of the Varden, Dragon Rider, or anything else you could possibly think up!)
  • Where were you born and where do you currently reside?
  • What would your back story be? (Think age, family and friends, motivation and purpose in life, etc…)
  • What is your ultimate mission?

We’re looking forward to reading your responses! Additionally, jump in and comment on your fellow fans’ stories! We’ll be selecting some of the best responses to share on social media!


Vroengard Island has always been a place of legend amongst those who have lived in the shadows of the Fall of the Riders. Before Eragon, Saphira, and Glaedr traveled to the island in search of the Vault of Souls, few had visited in the one hundred years after the bloody battle and destruction of the Riders’ capital, Doru Araeba.

It took nearly four books for fans to get a glimpse of this once-majestic island, but when the time came in the Inheritance chapter “Amid the Ruins”, fans were not disappointed. Christopher beautifully described the ruins of Doru Araeba and the way the land had reclaimed the area in the years since the Fall.

DeviantArt artist Bethany Thomasson, also known as “Pilgrimwanders”, brought the moment of discovery to life in a piece of fan art:

the_ruins_of_vroengard_by_pilgrimwanders-d4g1jfcThe scene, as illustrated above, from Inheritance:

The thick gray clouds parted, and from his place on Saphira’s back, Eragon beheld the interior of Vroengard Island.

Before them was a huge bowl-shaped valley, encircled by the steep mountains they had seen poking through the tops of the clouds. A dense forest of spruce, pine, and fir trees blanketed the sides of the mountains as well as the foothills below, like an army of prickly soldiers marching down from the peaks. The trees were tall and mournful, and even from a distance Eragon could see the beards of moss and lichen that hung from their heavy branches. Scraps of white mist clung to the sides of the mountains, and in several places throughout the valley, diffuse curtains of rains drifted from the ceiling of clouds.

High above the valley floor, Eragon could see a number of stone structures among the trees: tumbled, overgrown entrances to caves; the husks of burnt-out towers; grand halls with collapsed roofs; and a few smaller buildings that looked as if they might still be habitable.

A dozen or more rivers flowed out of the mountains and wandered across the verdant ground until they poured into a large, still lake near the center of the valley. Around the lake lay the remnants of the Riders’ city, Doru Araeba. The buildings were immense – great empty halls of such enormous proportions that many could have encompassed the whole of Carvahall. Every door was like the mouth to a vast, unexplored cavern. Every window was as tall and wide as a castle gate, and every wall was a sheer cliff.

Thick mats of ivy strangled the blocks of stone, and where there was no ivy there was moss, which meant that the buildings blended into the landscape and looked as if they had grown out of the earth itself. What little of the stone was bare tended to be a pale ocher, although patches of red, brown, and dusky blue were also visible.


Almost all the buildings were damaged, some more severely than others. The damage seemed to radiate outward from a single point near the southern edge of the city, where a wide crater sank more than thirty feet into the ground. A copse of birch trees had taken root in the depression, and their silvery leaves shook in the gusts of the directionless breeze.

The open areas within the city were overgrown with weeds and brush, while a fringe of grass surrounded each of the flagstones that formed the streets.Where the buildings had sheltered the Riders’ gardens from the blast that had ravaged the city, dull-colored flowers still grew in artful designs, their shapes no doubt governed by the dictates of some long-forgotten spell.

Altogether, the circular valley presented a dismal picture.

- “Amid the Ruins”, Inheritance

Now we ask: Is this how you first imagined the land in your head while reading the scene in Inheritance? Despite the risk, would you want to visit Vroengard Island?


It has been three years since the release of Inheritance, the final chapter in Christopher Paolini’s Inheritance Cycle, and fans are clamoring for information on Christopher’s next big project – be it set in the world of Alagaesia or in an entirely new universe.

With nearly three years to embark on new projects behind him, Christopher has now begun to speak about his future as a storyteller, including the future of the Inheritance universe and other stories the author plans to tell. Christopher has used his own platforms, including Twitter, as well as interviews and guest articles to detail the work he’s done over the past several years in addition to the projects he is currently working on and his vision for the future of his universes, including Inheritance.

With ten months of planning and months more of writing, Christopher was finally ready to discuss his next project in an article with Barnes and Noble promoting their “Get Pop Cultured” week. Christopher reflected on writing Inheritance, the shock of finishing a project he had spent over twelve years working on, and how he began writing outside of the Inheritance universe.

“Writing the Inheritance Cycle was like training for and competing in the Olympics. For over twelve years, I spent nearly every waking moment working on, thinking about, or discussing the series.” …

“Even though I knew I was approaching the end of the series, even though I’d anticipated it—and planned for it—for years, finishing it was still a shock. All of a sudden, this massive thing that had been the focal point of my life since I was fifteen was . . . gone.

The experience was both terrifying and exhilarating.”

Naturally, after over a decade writing in the same style, within the same universe, and with the same mindset, Christopher didn’t just dive into his next big project. Instead, he dipped his toes into the water, tried his hand at a variety of projects, and generally had fun growing:

“I messed around with a number of short stories, each in a different style. I even tried my hand at a screenplay (they’re harder than they look). And I read as many books and watched as many movies as I could.”

However, it would seem he couldn’t stay away from that new big project for too long:

“Once I had recharged my creative batteries, I knew I was ready to tackle something bigger. Much bigger. So I began researching the information I’d need. For nine to ten months, I scoured the Internet for details obvious and obscure. I called and emailed professors around the world. I spent days hashing over various world-building issues with my friends and family. All so that I could do justice to the setting I had decided on for my next story.

And then, only then, did I start to write.

So far, it’s been a blast. The story is science fiction—one of my first loves, along with fantasy—and full of aliens, spaceships, lasers, strange new planets, and explosions. You know, fun stuff. At the same time, I’m hoping that the story will stir people’s emotions, as well as give them a few interesting things to think about. As with all creative endeavors, there’s no guarantee of success. But I think it’s going to end up being pretty awesome.

Of course, I’m biased.”

Don’t worry – Christopher is making it clear that he’s not abandoning Alagaesia:

“In the long term, I do intend to return to the world of the Inheritance Cycle. However, for now, I’m enjoying stretching my wings and inventing a whole new universe for readers to explore. The stars are our future, and while we may never visit them ourselves, at least we can visit them in our dreams.”

Christopher is definitely hard at work on a project sure to please his long time readers! We’re excited to dive into Christopher’s next adventure and to continue holding our breath for the next Inheritance universe installment, known affectionately by fans as “Book V”.

Speaking of “Book V” – we’ve compiled a massive “Book V and Beyond” page containing everything you need to know about the next Inheritance universe books, including a possible prequel. The page includes comments from Christopher on the content we can expect to see in both books. You won’t want to miss this information!

Now we ask: Are you a fan of science fiction? What do you think Christopher’s book will include? Do you plan on reading his next book? is © 2004-2014. is owned by Mike Macauley, in partnership with
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