Thursday, August 23, 2012

Book Talk: The Last Gaurdian-Spoiler Alert

Artemis Fowl The Last Guardian
Title: The Last Guardian
Series: Artemis Fowl
Author: Eoin Colfer
Volume: 8 (the final one)
Rating: 10/10

This is one book that I waited ages for, and, even in Belize with terrible internet, I managed to get the eBook. I read it every minute I could get. And it was AWESOME.

Summary (minor spoilers): Basically, the souls of fairies who fought humans for the earth all those years ago have risen from their slumber on the Fowl manor grounds (apparently, the Fowls are more likely to believe in magic because it permeates the soil around them). These souls take over the bodies of many animals, as well as the bodies of Juliet, Miles and Beckett (though not so well to the last two, as they are both about as mentally determined as Artemis is and keep bursting out at random times). The one who awoke the souls was Opal, who escapes from prison by murdering her younger self and going pretty much nuclear as a result. She gets a whole lot of dark magic. There are two gates, one to release the souls into the world, and one that give the opener a choice of freeing the souls to depart or killing all humanity. Opal is obviously in it for option B. Meanwhile, the fairy and human world are both in chaos, as anything that Opal invented in the years between her current and her younger sell exploded, including many human devices with pirate Koboi technology. And so, as Foaly tries to save Haven and his wife, Artemis, Holly and Butler journey to the surface in an attempt to rescue Artemis's family and save the world (again). And it is time for a true ending. If you don't want to be spoiled even more, stop reading now.

This book focuses a lot on Artemis's growth as a person. We first meet a cold, selfish 11 year old who will do just about anything to get what he wants. In this book, Arty, though recovered from his Atlantis Complex, is much more moral, and cares a lot for both his family and friends. Enough to pretty much make the ultimate sacrifice (the one who opens the gate is pretty much bound to the fate of the souls, body dead, and soul gaurding the gate unless they should choose for their soul to move on) for them in order to free the fairy souls from the gate and save humanity. *cue serious emotional breakdown*.  And now it gets spoilerific. Be warned, ye who venture onward. Of course, Artemis being Artemis, he still has a plan. It involves cloning and is highly illegal (Artemis will be Artemis). He believes that his clone, which is a body without a soul, and his soul will be able to mesh, and he can pretty much come back from the dead. Of course, living as pure soul isn't easy, which he will need to do for six months, and there are no guarantees. He makes it, and at the end he is being filled in on his memories, since he's a little fuzzy. "It all started in Ho Chi Minh City one summer. It was sweltering by anyone's standards..."

Response: I thought it was really good. It was a bit darker, but still wonderful. It was told in the same witty manner that pulled me at the beginning. I have chosen to believe that Artemis didn't actually forget everything, just needed help to remember. In the end, humans are more aware of fairies but mostly chalk it up to hallucinations caused by mass trauma (what with all of the pirate fairy tech in cars and stuff exploding). The world is safe. I truly did not expect it to end the way it did, and I don't typically like Armageddon-ish endings, but the world came back together a bit. The fairies and humans might even be able to live more comfortably together, since human are going back to nature to survive. Thank you Eoin Colfer. You are a one saviour of my sanity on this trip. Thank you. I'm upset that the series is over, but it is so wonderful I can read it over and over and still fall in love with it every time. And I wouldn't say no to a couple short stories either (maybe Miles and Beckett, with Arty as a side character, though I would really miss him).

This book was read: In a hotel room in Belize, mostly. Every chance I could get. On my computer. And totally worth it.

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