"Stay back, human. You don't know what you are dealing with."
Twelve-year-old Artemis Fowl is a brilliant criminal mastermind. But even Artemis doesn't know what he's taken on when he kidnaps a fairy, Captain Holly Short of the LEPrecon Unit. These aren't the fairies of bedtime stories. These fairies are armed and they're dangerous. Artemis thinks he's got them just where he wants them, but then they stop playing by the rules.
...... Outer back cover.
FIRST SENTENCE (Prologue): How does one describe Artemis Fowl?
MEMORABLE MOMENT (Page 34): In the station lobby, a kleptomaniac dwarf was busy picking the pockets of everyone else in the booking line, including the officer he was handcuffed to.
KEEP IT OR NOT?: No, I shall be passing this on.
Oh dear, it would seem I disagree with just about everyone I know who has read this series of books (this being the first one).
I couldn't put this down stated a friend of mine, also in her 40's I hasten to add.
Better than Harry Potter, I wish I had a friend like this, said another, err, slightly younger acquaintance.
Fantastic stuff from beginning to end, Artemis Fowl is a rip-roaring, 21st-century romp of the highest order claimed one review on Amazon.com.
Oh well, I suppose we all look for different things in our choice of reading materials AND this was written with an intended age range of 9 to 12 years of age AND I suspect more with boys than girls in mind - though that said two of the main characters are female.
I suppose it was an exciting enough read, perhaps a little too much so for the younger reader, but I just could not get beyond how much I disliked Artemis, it just felt sooooo wrong to dislike a 12-year-old this much but I couldn't help myself from wanting to 'have a few stern words' with this so-called boy genius who I found to be totally obnoxious, Fowl by name and foul by nature.
But enough of Artemis.
A read with its fair share of a rough-and-tumble, one of the reasons I think it will probably appeal more to boys, this first outing in the series is quite funny in places and I did enjoy the coded 'gnomic' symbols at the bottom of every page which can apparently be decoded. Not so enjoyable were the characters most of whom seemed to lack something or other, not anything I could put my finger on, they just didn't hit the right note with me - apart from Foaly, a geeky technology loving centaur who put me in mind of Q in the James Bond books/films.