Excerpt from Artemis Fowl: The Opal Deception by Eoin Colfer, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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Artemis Fowl: The Opal Deception

By Eoin Colfer

Artemis Fowl: The Opal Deception

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Prologue

This article was posted on the fairy internet on the site www.horsesense.gnom. Though it has never been proven, it is believed that this site is maintained by the centaur Foaly, technical consultant to the Lower Elements Police. Almost every detail of the following account contradicts the official release from the LEP Press Office.

We've all heard the official explanation for the tragic events surrounding the Zito Probe investigation. LEP Internal Affairs would have us believe that one of their officers was almost singlehandedly responsible for the entire affair. I am posting this article to ensure that you do not rush to judgement without all the facts. The LEP may be able to silence their officers, but they cannot censor me.

I know for an absolute fact that the officer in question, Captain Holly Short, did not commit the despicable crime she is accused of, and by the time you have finished reading this account, you will know it too.

Humans are at the centre of this particular case. Most humans aren't smart enough to find the leg holes in their trousers, but there are certain Mud Men clever enough to make me nervous. If they discovered the existence of an underground fairy city, they would certainly do their best to exploit the residents. Most men would be no match for superior fairy technology. But there are some humans who are almost smart enough to pass as fairies. One human in particular. I think we all know who I'm talking about.

In fairy history only one human has bested us. And it really sticks in my hoof that this particular human is little more than a boy. Artemis Fowl, the Irish criminal mastermind. Little Arty led the LEP a merry dance across the continents, until finally they used fairy technology to wipe our existence from his mind. But even as the gifted centaur Foaly pressed the mind-wipe button, he wondered if the fairy People were being fooled again? Had the Irish boy left something behind to make himself remember? Of course he had, as we were all to find out later.

Artemis Fowl plays does play a significant role in the following events, but for once he was not trying to steal from the People as he had completely forgotten we existed. No, the mastermind behind this tragic episode is actually a fairy.

So who is involved in this tragic tale of two worlds? Who are the main fairy players? Obviously Foaly is the real hero of the piece. Without his innovations, the LEP would soon be beating the Mud Men back from our doors. He is the unsung hero who solves riddles of the ages, while the reconnaissance and retrieval teams swan about above ground taking all the glory.

Then there's Captain Holly Short, the officer whose reputation is under fire. Holly is one of the LEP's best and brightest. A natural born pilot with a gift for improvisation in the field. She's not the best at taking orders, a trait that has landed her in trouble on more than one occasion. Holly was the fairy at the centre of all the Artemis Fowl incidents. The pair had almost become friends, when the Council ordered us to mind-wipe Artemis, and just when he was becoming a nice Mud Boy too.

As we all know, Commander Julius Root has a role in proceedings. The youngest ever full Commander in the LEP. An elf who has steered the People through many a crisis. Not the easiest fairy to get along with, but sometimes the best leaders do not make the best friends.

I suppose Mulch Diggums deserves a mention. Until recently Mulch was imprisoned, but as usual managed to wriggle his way out. This kleptomaniac, flatulent dwarf has played a reluctant part in many of the Fowl adventures. But Holly was glad to have his help on this mission. If not for Mulch and his bodily functions, things could have turned out a lot worse than they did. And they turned out badly enough.

Copyright 2005 by Eoin Colfer. All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of Penguin Group (UK). No part of this book maybe reproduced without written permission from the publisher.

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