Eoin Colfer – The Atlantis Complex
Read By: Nathaniel Parker
Length: 7h 38m (432 pages)
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Started: 17 June 2013
Finished: 21 June 2013
Where did it come from? The library.
Why do I have it? Short, fun, fast audiobooks!
When a criminal
genius has a mental break,
things get ugly fast.
Summary: Artemis Fowl, boy genius and (reformed) criminal mastermind, has a plan. But this time, it’s a plan to save the world from global warming, with the aid of some fairy technology. This might seem somewhat tame compared to Artemis’s usual standards, but he’s been feeling some guilt about his past dealings. Unfortunately, that guilt, combined with the heavy doses of fairy magic to which he’s been exposed, has resulted in Artemis’s developing Atlantis Complex, a fairy malady that manifests itself as obsessive-compulsive disorder, extreme paranoia, and even split personalities. This would be bad enough on its own, but it’s decidedly inconvenient when a villain emerges with a plot that will throw the entire fairy world into chaos, and Artemis’s friends need him to be on top of his criminal-genius game.
Review: This series is just reliably fun. This book in particular was not one of the best installments, but I still had a good time listening to it. All of the things that Colfer does well – well-developed characterization, fast-paced action adventure, a snarky sense of humor that works on multiple levels, cool worldbuilding especially re: fairy technology – all of those things are certainly present in full force in this installment in the series. I liked the play on “what if Artemis is not Artemis when we need him to be Artemis” in this book – somewhat similar to The Time Paradox, when Artemis was not Artemis because he was the 10-year-old obnoxious Artemis, but in this case, Artemis is not Artemis because he’s Artemis’s hilariously smarmy alternate personality, Orion.
My issues with this book, relative to its predecessors, are twofold. First, and more minorly, I felt like a lot of the events in this book came out of nowhere. In some cases, that’s fine, but there weren’t really threads of this book planted in the previous ones, and I didn’t feel like the guilt about endangering his family that Artemis was feeling at the end of The Time Paradox was potent enough to send him into the full throes of OCD with which he opens this book. But secondly, and more importantly, was that I didn’t really feel like the central story was strong enough. Maybe it’s that the villain didn’t seem evil-genius-y enough to be a believable foil for the combined forces of Artemis (or, well, Orion), Holly, Foaly, and Butler (not to mention Mulch and Juliet). Each of the pieces, each of the individual scenes, was fine on its own; whatever was happening at any given time was enough fun to listen to that I enjoyed the book as a whole. But when put together, the story just didn’t quite have the oomph that earlier Artemis Fowl books have had. 3.5 out of 5 stars.
Recommendation: For fans of the series, it’s an enjoyable diversion, although it’s not the best of the bunch.
First Line: Vatnajokull is the biggest glacier in Europe with an area of more than five thousand stark blue-white miles.
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