The Time Paradox by Eoin Colfer
Digital Audiobook narrated by Nathaniel Parker
Published by Hyperion on July 5, 2008
Series: Artemis Fowl #6
Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Irish Mythology, Mythology, Science Fiction, Science Fiction Fantasy, Time Travel, Young Adult
Length: 391 pages or 8 hours, 52 minutes
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After disappearing for three years, Artemis Fowl has returned to a life different from the one he left. Now he's a big brother, and spends his days teaching his twin siblings the important things in life, such as how to properly summon a waiter at a French restaurant.
But when Artemis Fowl's mother contracts a life-threatening illness, his world is turned upside down. The only hope for a cure lies in the brain fluid of the silky sifaka lemur. Unfortunately, the animal is extinct due to a heartless bargain Artemis himself made as a younger boy.
Though the odds are stacked against him, Artemis is not willing to give up. With the help of his fairy friends, the young genius travels back in time to save the lemur and bring it back to the present. But to do so, Artemis will have to defeat a maniacal poacher, who has set his sights on new prey: Holly Short.
The rules of time travel are far from simple, but to save his mother, Artemis will have to break them all.and outsmart his most cunning adversary yet: Artemis Fowl, age ten.
The first time I read this, I gave it three stars. Since I didn’t leave a proper review, I have NO IDEA what my thoughts were at the time. Clearly, I was foolish. This book is magnificent.
The Time Paradox takes us to Fowl Manor, where Angeline Fowl is dreadfully ill, and getting worse all the time. The Fowl men call in all their favors, touch on all their resources, but nobody knows what’s wrong with Arty’s mother. Nobody, that is, except the faeries. As it turns out, it’s an illness known to the folk and believed to be eradicated, spread through the use of magic. If Angeline has it, it could be a recurrence… and the animal whose brain fluid is required to create the vaccine is extinct.
Okay, gonna stop here. FIRST OF ALL. No animals were hurt in the making of this book.
We’ve got No. 1 in a kimono strolling into Fowl Manor to send Holly and Artemis back in time to save the silky sifaka lemur… which Artemis caused to go extinct in the first place. Yup, our hero has come a long way! In the time tunnel, Artemis gets older and grows a bit of a scruffy beard and long hair, Holly gesticulates younger… and it’s a grand mess. A delightful grand mess. The tone and comedy of The Time Paradox reminds me a bit of one of Shakespeare’s comedies, where everyone starts assuming the wrong sorts of things and tripping over one another and becoming their own worst enemy, and I am thrilled.
So with No. 1 at the beginning and end, and a whole lot of my favorite dwarf in the middle, the comedy was strong with this one. Not to mention the romance! This is the awkward, bumbling romance we’ve waited six books for and I am all over the adorableness of it and I’m so embarrassed for both of them, honestly. I spent a lot of time during The Time Paradox saying “awwwww” and laughing, and really, what more can you ask from a book?
Okay, but adorable grown-up-ish Artemis and teen angst Holly Short aside, this is the first Artemis Fowl book with an underlying theme for the greatest good of humanity. Where I didn’t enjoy this approach in The Final Warning (honestly, I thought the fourth Maximum Ride book was a hot mess), it didn’t get too preachy in The Time Paradox. It’s there, it’s a running reminder of the need to protect endangered animals, and that’s that. The characters don’t do anything without it fitting into their traditional motivations. For example, Artemis himself is intrinsically selfish, and would not save the world unless there was something in it for him. The something tends to be to protect what’s his: his fortune, his family, his reputation. It can be difficult to take on a preachy topic like environmental responsibility without it overriding a plot, but Eoin Colfer does decent job with it.
As an additional perk, The Time Paradox explains a lot of things that happened in the last five books… and brings back my favorite bumbling villain. I love fail!villains so much.