Artemis Fowl is number two on the New York Times Bestseller list this week for children’s series books, and has been for a while (behind the Twilight series).
The book, set in modern-day Ireland, follows a plot of 12-year-old Artemis Fowl, descendant of a line of billionaire criminals. Fowl hopes to pick up where his father (missing, presumed dead) left off with the family business. The first step: return the family’s holdings to above the billion-dollar mark. None of this piddly millions stuff. Fowl decides the best way to make this turnaround is by robbing a fairy of his gold, fairy being the general umbrella word for elves, dwarfs, leprechauns, sprites, etc. The book follows this encounter with narrators on both sides.
I quite enjoyed this book. The writing is witty, and it uses surprisingly good words for a YA novel (I saw ages 8 and up somewhere).
I really have no complaints about the book. I think the book does a good job of explaining that Fowl really isn’t a good guy, a hero (and thus is not to be emulated). There’s a coded message running along the bottom of the book’s pages, just for the reader to solve, which I thought would be fun a young reader. I’m not reviewing this as a children’s book, though; I don’t have children, and I am unprepared to make judgment calls for parents.
This title was published in 2001; the series is up to book six now.