Book Review: Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident by Eoin Colfer


  Artemis Fowl: The Arctic Incident by Eoin Colfer The sequel to Artemis Fowl reunites old enemies: the thirteen-year-old master criminal of the title and his Vin Diesel-like bodyguard, Butler; elf cop Holly Short and her commander, Julius Root; and Foaly, the centaur techno-geek, who works for LEP (the Lower Elements Police). Only this time, the old enemies are on the same side. A year has passed since young Artemis did the seemingly impossible, getting away with a ... Read More »

Book Review: Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer


Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer This book may be a little brutal for very young readers, I don’t know. The title character is a 12-year-old criminal mastermind, from an old Irish noble family of criminals, whose father disappeared in a nasty encounter with the Russian mafia (but his son still doesn’t presume him dead) and whose mother, shattered by the tragedy, seems to be going insane. For family all he really has left is his ... Read More »

Book Review: Airman by Eoin Colfer


Airman by Eoin Colfer Conor Broekhart was born to fly. Literally. Born when the lives of his parents hung in jeopardy as their hydrogen balloon plummeted from the sky, he saves a princess and earns a peerage at the tender age of nine, by improvising a parachute from the flag on a burning rooftop. His tutor is a famous balloonist who emphasizes martial arts and the principles of flight. In the 1890s in which this ... Read More »

Book Review: Fire Arrow by Edith Pattou


After the events of Hero’s Song, hero’s daughter and expert archer Brie, a.k.a. Breo-Saight, settles down for a little while with her friend Collun, as he takes possession of the stronghold of his hero father and begins to set its gardens in order. While Collun exerts on Brie a peaceable influence, she feels increasingly drawn back into her quest for revenge on the men who murdered her father in front of her. And so she parts ... Read More »

Book Review: Hero’s Song by Edith Pattou


In this first book of the “Songs of Eirren” series, the world of Irish legends become accessible to American youth. This is no guarantee that American readers at any age will be ready to guess how to pronounce words given in their Gaelic spelling, which I find so baffling that English spelling seems intuitive beside it. Fortunately, there are only a few of these in this book. And so it is left to the sensuously ... Read More »

Book Review: East by Edith Pattou


I was trying to decide whether to read a series of books by Edith Pattou, including Hero’’s Song and Fire Arrow, when I came upon this stand-alone novel and decided to read it first. So the first thing I have to say about East is that it made up my mind: I will be reading those other titles by Pattou, and soon. The first surprise about East is the cover, which depicts a beautiful but shockingly underdressed young woman walking through the ... Read More »

Book Review: Carry On, Jeeves by P. G. Wodehouse


This collection of humorous stories, published in 1925, is very similar to My Man Jeeves(1919)—so similar, in fact, that several stories from that earlier book appear, in a somewhat revised form, in this later one. In this case, all ten of the stories feature English playboy Bertie Wooster and his resourceful manservant Jeeves. (You may recall that half of My Man Jeeves was devoted to a different series of stories.) One of them, “Jeeves Takes Charge,” tells the ... Read More »

Book Review: The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson


1979 was a very good year for Katherine Paterson. In that year, she won her first Newbery Medal (for Bridge to Terabithia) and her second National Book Award in Children’s Literature (for this book, also a Newbery Honor Book). Like Paterson’s other Newbery Medal winner (1980′s Jacob Have I Loved), this book begins by introducing us to a hard-to-love girl and ends by making us love her. Like Bridge to Terabithia, this book – inspired by Paterson’s own ... Read More »

Book Review: Ereth’s Birthday by Avi


Ereth’s Birthday by Avi The fourth book in the Tales from Dimwood Forest focuses on your favorite, free-swearing, prickly porcupine, Ereth. Feeling ignored by Poppy and her family on his birthday, Ereth moodily stalks off into the forest in search of salt. Instead, he finds a vixen caught in a trap, and her dying wish is for Ereth to find her three kits and take care of them. Grumblingly, grudgingly, Ereth does so, forming a most unlikely ... Read More »

Book Review: Ragweed by Avi


Ragweed by Avi In the third of his four Tales from Dimwood Forest, Avi shares with us the youthful adventures of a spirited, golden mouse named Ragweed, as he leaves his peaceful home and family along the brook to explore the world. At a fork in the road, where he has a choice of going to the city or to the forest of Dimwood, he chooses the city. A city where a whole neighborhood, near the ... Read More »