Genre: Fantasy Age Range: MG Star Rating: 4 stars Series: Yes - book two of spin off series
*SPOILER ALERT: contains SPOILERS for THE FOWL TWINS*
Artemis’s little brothers Myles and Beckett borrow the Fowl jet without permission, and it ends up as a fireball over Florida. The twins plus their fairy minder, the pixie-elf hybrid Lazuli Heitz, are lucky to escape with their lives.
The Fowl parents and fairy police force decide that enough is enough and the twins are placed under house arrest. But Myles has questions, like: who was tracking the Fowl jet? Why would someone want to blow them out of the sky? These questions must infuriate someone, because Myles is abducted and spirited away from his twin.
Now Beckett and Lazuli must collaborate to find Myles and rescue him – not easy when it was Myles who was the brains of the operation. Their chase will take them across continents, deep underground, and into subaquatic super villain lairs. They will be shot at, covered in spit, and at the receiving end of some quite nasty dwarf sarcasm. But will Beckett be able to come up with a genius plan without a genius on hand…?
Synopsis taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.
DENY ALL CHARGES, the second Fowl Twins book, is a romp through increasingly bizarre situations. It honestly does feel like ARTEMIS FOWL, but on LSD as the internal logic is the wackier the better – and it works. It’s completely what I need right now – a dose of fun and cackles with all disbelief suspended.
There are also jokes in there for older readers. Not crude, but requires an understanding of international politics that the average 8-12 year old reader probably won’t get. (I don’t want to spoil the best one in this book, that had me messaging my friend ALL CAPS, so have the best one from the first book; the troll that squeals is called Whistle Blower.)
For your 8-12 year old reader, there are fart jokes a plenty to amuse. Yeah, it’s a bit puerile, but that’s the point. It’s supposed to be silly and funny, and is a series that does not take itself seriously at all (unlike the original series, which, although it was crackers at time, did have a more serious tone)
This book has made me very nostalgic for the original ARTEMIS FOWL books. I think I touched on it in my review of the last book, but this spin-off series faces the impossible task of matching up to the original series. I’ve now read the two Fowl Twins back to back, and it gave me a chance to think about spin offs, and how the character of Myles isn’t very satisfying.
Myles whole character thing is that he’s smart. In fact, he’s smarter than Artemis – which comes with lots of disparaging. This felt rather like a choice made in order to one up the previous series, but meant that Myles came across as rather childish and frustrating at times. I know the Fowl-verse is synonymous with super-geniuses now, but I kept thinking about what this book would be like if the character of Myles was not at all as smart as his older brother. Instead, what if he was constantly trying to measure up to his brother? There’s a lot of potential there for a character who might have been a bit more original (thought that does feel like a very YA character arc.)
It’s a small thing (though naturally, I’ve written a lot about it!) and probably only in my brain I’ve been spending a lot of time working on character development recently. It didn’t impact my reading very much, as I read the Fowl-verse for the bonkers story lines, insane happenings, and all round silliness. Given that criteria, DENY ALL CHARGES is exactly what I wanted from this book.
Read my reviews of other books by Eoin Colfer:
The Fowl Twins (this series):
- THE FOWL TWINS (The Fowl Twins #1, the Fowl-Verse #10)
- GET WHAT THEY DESERVE (The Fowl Twins #3, the Fowl-Verse #12)
- HIGH FIRE (#1)