Tag Archive: eoin colfer

Artemis Fowl #7: The Atlantis Complex by Eoin Colfer

Ages 12 and up

Artemis Fowl has just turned fifteen and he’s ready to do something that he has never done before: Save the world–willingly. It should be simple shouldn’t it? With the best of both human and fairy technology at his disposal, Artemis has discovered a workable way to slow down global warming. But unfortunately, it seems that any time that Artemis and Captain Holly Short occupy the same space trouble is bound to follow. Artemis and his friends find themselves under attack from an enemy that Holly had forgotten she had. And if that isn’t enough, Artemis seems to be suffering from Atlantis Complex, a rare fairy psychosis that couldn’t have picked a worse time to develop. As Artemis, Holly, and friends try to get to the bottom of both the attack on themselves and the subsequent attack on Atlantis (because, ofcourse, they are related) they must also contend with Artemis’ growing paranoia and a split personality that brings to light things that Holly would rather stay hidden. Will Artemis’ distrust of even his friends keep them from saving the fairy folk yet again, or can Artemis overcome his new nemesis–his mind.

The Artemis Fowl books are books that definitely deserve a permanent home on my bookshelf. And once they’ve settled on one cover design, they will have one. I discovered this series through a friend, who gave the first book to my brother. Now at that time, by baby bro was not the biggest reader. And he loved it. So of course, I had to read it. I’ve been in love with the series ever since.

One of the best things about the Artemis Fowl series is that is so much fun from beginning to end. This newest book isn’t any exception. Right off the bat you have not only a mystery (What is with Artemis’ sudden obsession with the number five?), but the usual banter. There’s really no build-up, no easing into the problems of the plot. The strange state of Artemis’ mind is disturbing in a character you love. And just when as you start to figure out what the heck is going on, BAM! The usual mayhem occurs. And maybe a few deaths. This could be really heavy, gruesome stuff, but Colfer still uses dialogue and description in such a way that even with things are exploding, you’re laughing your socks off. I mean, he has Butler pretend to be a luchador–complete with a crazy costume. The characters in The Atlantis Complex are just as much fun and witty as they have been in the last six books.

It’s nice to get to see Artemis vulnerable to what he has considered his greatest asset in the previous six books. He feels more like a normal teenager with each book (not that he ever will truly be normal) and I think this is the first time he’s ever actually wished he was. It is interesting to see how much everyone has come to rely on having Artemis to help think them out of a situation. Artemis’ crazy is well-written. It’s a smart kind of crazy. He’s not bouncing off the walls and shouting incoherent sentences, he’s simply paranoid and more than a little obsessive-compulsive. Which doesn’t work out so well when you’re leaps and bounds beyond your friends intelligence-wise.

This book feels a little more confined than those that came before. And I guess, since a majority of it is spent in a tiny submersible sub, that is expected. Still, it works. I walked away from this book feeling like I knew the main characters much better than I did before, so I didn’t mind that the cast of characters wasn’t as expansive as it has been in previous books, but I did notice. A lot of it was setting up for the next  book, I felt (which is kind of obvious after the ending). I will warn you that the ending of TAF is what could be considered a mild cliffhanger. And if the rumor that this is the penultimate Arty book is true, then I suppose to be expected.

This book was everything that I could have asked for it to be…even if we had to listen to Orion call Foaly a “noble beast” so many times it was nauseating. The more I got into the book, the more I realized that I had missed Artemis and Holly and Butler and Juliet and Foaly and yes, even Mulch. It was wonderful to be able to interact with the characters that I have grown up with. And I will be eagerly awaiting any news of the next volume in the series.

This is a good example of:

  • Description
  • Dialogue
  • Character building
  • Adventure novel
This book is on my recommended reading list.


Airman by Eoin Colfer

12 and up

I picked this book up solely on the basis of who the author is. As an Artemis Fowl fan, my only thought was “He’s got another book? Awesome!” And thankfully, Colfer did not disappoint.

Airman is a Victorian era scientific fantasy. A far cry from the fairy-ridden world of AF, but just as intriguing and well-built. All of Colfer’s considerable skill goes into a twisting plot that upholds the writer’s maxim to put the character through everything that can go wrong–and then some (got that little tidbit from Orson Scott Card).

Connor has a rather good life at the beginning. Loving parents who are close friends with the king of the Saltee Islands (real place, made -up government/population), his own rather promising friendship with the king’s daughter and a teacher who has him well on the way to flying the first aeroplane. Then he ends up in the wrong place at the wrong time and lands himself in prison at the age of fourteen–wrongfully accused naturally. Most of the book focuses on his plans to escape and his struggle as he tries to choose between old life and new.

Following Connor’s journey was thoroughly enjoyable. Colfer’s word play and fresh take on the Scifi genre had me wishing that the narrator would read faster (and I’m sure that the other drivers around me were nonplussed as I reacted to the book with my usual enthusiasm). With every book Colfer continually improves (in my opinion).

I would caution the parents of younger children. As with AF, the infrequent appearance of the word d*mn would fit this in at least the early teen years. That said, it is a wonderful book and if you’ve enjoyed Colfer’s previous work this book should end up on your reading list.

This is a good example of:

  • Historical fiction/Science fiction genres
  • Plot Twists
  • Well-developed villians and minor characters

This is one my recommended reading list.

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