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The Atlantis Complex: Artemis Fowl    by Eoin Colfer order for
Atlantis Complex
by Eoin Colfer
Order:  USA  Can
Hyperion, 2010 (2010)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book

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* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

The Atlantis Complex follows The Time Paradox as the seventh in Eoin Colfer's wildly popular series starring Artemis Fowl. Once an amoral young criminal mastermind, he has grown through his adventures into a teenager with a few small seeds of conscience.

In previous books, Artemis kidnapped a feisty Leprechaun (Holly Short); saved his dad from the Russian Mafia; helped fairies put down a goblin revolution; rescued a lost colony of demons stranded in time; and foiled the nefarious plans of genius billionairess pixie villainess Opal Koboi.

In The Time Paradox, our hero had his younger self as an opponent. Now he has to cope with an even tougher one, his split personality. Artemis Fowl picks a poor time to come down with the Atlantis Complex (a psychosis common amongst 'guilt-ridden criminals', probably induced by his exposure to fairy magic). Symptoms include obsessive behavior (with Artemis, it's to do with numbers), paranoia, and multiple personality disorder.

It all begins with a secret meeting on an Iceland glacier, during which fifteen-year-old Artemis plans to unveil his Ice Cube (designed to save the world) to the Fairy People, represented by Holly, her new boss, Commander Raine Vinyaya, and geeky centaur scientist Foaly. The meeting is interrupted by a deep-space probe from Foaly's own space program, filled with lethally reprogrammed amorphobots. It's then, when they're about to be obliterated and his wiles are needed most, that Artemis's inane alter ego Orion takes over. He hangs back from action and calls Holly beloved.

Where is Butler, you ask? The paranoid Artemis sent him away, on the pretext of danger to Butler's sister Juliet, who's working with a Mexican wrestling troupe as the Jade Princess. What ensues is a mesmerized riot, after which my series favorite, explosive Mulch Diggums, shows up to save the day. Who could be responsible for all the mayhem? Turns out that it's an inmate of the Deeps Maximum Security Prison, Atlantis - and no it's not Opal Koboi this time.

Aside from Artemis losing his mind, there's a prison break, an attack by a mythical giant squid, a capture and escape, enslavement by black magic, and a trap for the real target of the exercise, powerful warlock No. 1. How do the good guys get out of this one? Read The Atlantis Complex and you'll find out, but be warned that it's as devious as one can expect from Artemis Fowl, even with Orion in the mix!

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