Book Review: Artemis Fowl

I’ve been wanting to read the Artemis Fowl series since I was in middle school. Now as a 24-year-old, I’m finally getting around to reading it. All I can say is that I wish I had discovered these books sooner.

Photo courtesy of Goodreads.com
Photo courtesy of Goodreads.com

Artemis Fowl is a 12-year-old self-proclaimed evil genius. He definitely has the genius part down, but as you read the book, you start to doubt how evil he actually is. His goal in life is to somehow restore the Fowl fortune and their criminal empire, and he turns to the elusive fairy world to get it.

The interesting thing about the fairies in this book is that they aren’t the typical Tinker Bell fairies. From the way I understood it, “fairies” is kind of a catch-all term for a number of mystical creatures (elves, dwarves, goblins, etc.) who lived underground and didn’t trust the Mud Men (humans.) Artemis’ plan is to use the fairies’ sacred book in order to make his millions.

People who know me know that I rarely use a phrase like this, but Artemis Fowl is an absolute delight to read! I’m not kidding. I read it in less than a week, and I enjoyed it so much!

As you read, you grieve with Artemis as he watches his mother suffer from some sort of mental illness. You are genuinely impressed at how calm and calculating he is, even though he’s just a kid. You mourn whenever Artemis’ bodyguard and faithful friend, Butler, or Butler’s little sister Juliet get into danger. And you look forward to the moments when his seemingly tough personality is cracked to remind you that he’s only 12.

I was definitely rooting for him to succeed because who doesn’t love an evil boy genius??, But it’s impossible to hate his adversaries, the fairies. Julius Root is hilarious as a typical police chief type character, and Holly Short is so spunky and determined that I hope she returns for the sequels. And the centaur Foaly’s constant snide remarks are especially funny when Root overhears them.

Eoin Colfer’s writing style for this book was great. You feel like he’s in the room with you, telling you the story out loud. There are so many clever little jokes in the book that I just don’t think I would have appreciated as a middle school student. I’m reading another book right now, but after that, I’m definitely going to start book 2, The Arctic Incident.

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