Friday, May 5, 2017

Review: The Opal Deception

The Opal Deception by Eoin Colfer
Artemis Fowl #4
Published April 30th 2005 by Miramax Books

After his last run-in with the fairies, Artemis Fowl had his mind wiped of his memories of the world belowground. Any goodness he had grudgingly learned is now gone, and the young genius has reverted to his criminal lifestyle.

Artemis is in Berlin preparing to steal a famously well-guarded painting from a German bank. Little does he know that his every move is being watched by his cunning old rival, Opal Koboi. The evil pixie has spent the last year in a self-induced coma, plotting her revenge on all those who foiled her attempt to destroy the LEPrecon fairy police. And Artemis is at the top of her list. In a brilliant move, Opal escapes by cloning herself and masquerading as a human in order to carry out her schemes. Her first act is to lure Captain Holly Short and Commander Root into a deadly trap. her next step is to destroy Artemis by turning his own genius against him.

Once again, it's up to Artemis Fowl to stop the human and fairly worlds from colliding—only this time, Artemis faces an enemy who may have finally outsmarted him...
The Opal Deception is a truly solid addition to the Artemis Fowl Series and I have to say that with every book I read, I find myself having more and more fun with this series.  I'm kicking myself for not getting into these books sooner but at the same time, they're just so perfect right now that I can't help but feel like the timing is spot on.  I can totally get why so many Potterheads were also obsessed with these books too when both the series' were coming out!

The Opal Deception picks up soon after the events of The Eternity Code but it's a whole different ball game considering how the previous book ended.  It isn't too long before the things take a decididely drastic turn for the worst and our heros find themselves caught in a deadly game of cat and mouse with a familiar and exceedingly devious enemy. I don't know if it's because I'm getting more familiar with all of the characters so they're starting to feel like old friends but I was very impressed by how every single character grew and how the bonds of friendship solidified throughout this ragtag group of humans and fairies. So since I'm reviewing a book mid-series, instead of talking plot, I'm going to take a closer look at the group of main characters.

First there's Artemis of course, the titular character. Artemis is quite conflicted at the start of this book but when his past clicks with the present, he's better able to reconcile his confusion and come to terms with what kind of person he wants to be.  Despite some epiphanies, Artemis remains ruthless, cunning and brilliant beyond even what I've come to expect. I love that as a main character in MG/YA fiction, Artemis is flawed and not prone to heroics. His successes come from his brilliance but he's severely lacking in the physical department, something that causes him his fair share of issues this time around.

Butler, the other human in this crew, is Artemis' bodyguard and confidante. Butler is your typical action hero yes, but his relationship with the boy genius Artemis is beyond endearing and somewhat at odds with his tough guy persona.  I love how Butler will do whatever it takes to get the job done -whatever the job may be. I also really enjoy his easy rapport with the rest of the characters. He's intimidating as fuck but he's also snarky and great at thinking on his feet.

Holly Short is a character I took to straight away but with every new instalment in the series, I like her more and more. She's brilliant, there's no other way to put this. Holly has a rough time in The Opal Deception - even more so than everyone else but she keeps her head on straight and she never, ever loses her resolve. As a Fairy, and a member of the LEP (Fairy Police) she's seen her fair share of action, but she's never dealt with anything quite on the level that she does here and she was bloody amazing.

Mulch is once again thrown into the fray, almost against his better judgement (again) but his unique skill set as a dwarf never fails to surprise me. Honestly, I think that the Mythology in the Artemis Fowl Series is nothing short of fantastic. It's impressive how well developped everything is and how immersive the entire world becomes because of it!

And finally, Foaly, the centaur and brains behind the scenes. Foaly has yet to see any action other than behind a computer but that's where he shines so I'm ok with that. Foaly is sassy and snarky  but he's also brilliant so he can get away with it. Foaly is indispensable in the best of times but in this instalment, he was a real life-saver.

I won't say much about the plot of The Opal Deception, given that this is the fourth book in the series and the fact that it relies heavily on the plot of the second book... but I will say this: it was thrilling from start to finish and brilliantly executed. The stakes were much higher than they'd previously been and our heroes suffered some losses but the way they came together was simply beautiful. The Mythology in this series is rich and deep, the characters are wonderfully fleshed out and the pacing was tight from the first page to the last. Bring on The Lost Colony!

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars

3 comments:

  1. These sound so fun! And a dwarf and centaur character too? cha- ching, that sounds awesome. Love the mythology aspects, and the concept of a fairy police too. I really need to buckle down and try this series soon. Maybe this year I'll get 'em and give 'em a shot. Super review!! Oh and I love the titles of these too- Opal deception, Eternity code- those are cool!

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  2. This is one of those series I feel like I should have read already but haven't lol. They sound like so much fun! Great review!

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  3. That's so awesome that four books in, the series just keeps getting better! I really need to check out the first book, but I also feel that I owe it to Percy Jackson to finish his series first, LOL.

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