Book Review: Artemis Fowl

‘Trust me, I’m a genius…’


I never would have read Artemis Fowl if I didn’t have to read it for work. While I have an unashamed love of teen dystopia, flat out children’s books are not really my thing, what with me supposedly being a full grown adult these days. Or at least that’s what I thought. Reading Artemis Fowl has unfortunately confirmed what I have long suspected. I have never properly grown up. Hence my undying love of cartoons and Coco Pops.

Artemis Fowl is the story of a precocious (and frankly annoying) twelve year old who attempts to enter the underground world of trolls, dwarfs and fairies in order to steal some of their much vaunted gold. While the characters feel familiar (boy genius, cigar chomping police chief, the maverick rookie, the menacing sidekick), it is the ambitious nature of combining many different genres that makes Artemis Fowl a success.

Irish author Eoin Colfer clearly has a genuine love for his characters that results in a warmth that is often missing in this genre. The story is simple and at times predictable but the language is never dumbed down. I never felt like I was reading a book intended for children.

Colfer’s third novel is a page turner and he is just as comfortable writing snappy dialogue as he is constructing complex action sequences. This contributes to a book that has something for everyone and that universality, combined with the cinematic scope of the story, means it is no surprise that there is currently a film adaptation on the way.

I said earlier that I would never have read this book if not for work, not only did I finish it weeks before my deadline but I would strongly consider looking into the other 7 books that make up the series.

No harm no fowl.

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