Skip to main content

Artemis Fowl

Review

Artemis Fowl

Artemis Fowl is the greatest criminal mastermind the world has ever seen, despite being just twelve years old. For centuries, his family has been pillaging from others to amass their vast fortune. With his father missing in action after a fiery explosion and his mother bedridden with grief, Artemis is free to spend his days crafting ingenious schemes to add to the Fowl coffers.

When Internet research leads him to discover an underground fairy world hidden from the human race, he sets his sights on exploiting them to obtain some of their legendary gold. But first he must find and decode their famed Book --- the Bible containing their sacred rules, rituals and magical secrets. Written in gnomish, the fairy language, finding a copy is only half the battle because its meaningless pictograms are of no use to any mere human.

But unfortunately for the fairies, Artemis is no normal human. After months of scouring the globe for a copy of the Book, his hard work pays off. Once in his possession, it is only a matter of time before his clever computer programs crack its elusive code. Using the fruits of his newfound knowledge, Artemis and his faithful bodyguard Butler enact a diabolical plan to kidnap one of the fairies in ransom for their gold. But he gets more than he bargains for when his unwitting victim turns out to be Captain Holly Short of the LEPrecon (Lower Elements Police Reconnaissance) Unit.

Between Holly's fiery personality and the fierce determination of her boss, Commander Root, to get her back safely, it seems for once that Artemis may have underestimated his enemy. A major battle of wits and technology ensues, and in a surprise ending full of clever twists and turns, Artemis must make a choice that shows he just may have a conscience after all.

Wickedly humorous, vividly imagined and full of intrigue, deception and mayhem, ARTEMIS FOWL marks the beginning of a wholly original, seat-of-the-pants adventure series. Its unusual combination of magic and technology make for compulsively readable, page-turning action scenes. Readers will cheer on the irrepressible Holly Short and her fairy colleagues while coming to grudgingly admire young Artemis. Populated with an unforgettable supporting cast of characters like farting dwarfs, murderous trolls and a techie centaur, the ingenious and elaborate fairy underworld brought to life here will capture the imaginations of children and adults alike.

Reviewed by Joni Rendon on April 20, 2012

Artemis Fowl
by Eoin Colfer