A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Ideas on how human society recovers when all modern technology fails. Thoughts on cloning and the risks.
Friendship and trust in the strengths of friends are keys to survival.
Positive Role Models
In Artemis' grand series exit, he realizes how far he's come. He considered himself broken before his friendship with Holly and other fairies. He goes from self-described criminal mastermind and loner to someone willing to sacrifice everything for his friends. Mulch Diggums still steals without remorse, but one thing does change pretty profoundly about him: He decides to play the hero and save his friends when he normally would have run away and saved himself.
Violence & Scariness
Tech explodes all over the human and fairy worlds, killing countless innocents with talk of possible Armageddon. Characters shot and killed, one after she is ransomed and demands aren't met. Injuries and knockouts from a ship crash, an airplane crash, a rampaging troll and goblins, arrows, magical blasts -- most can be magically healed. Characters, including 4-year-old boys, possessed and told to attack others.
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Jokes about explosive dwarf gas are a constant in the series.
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Products & Purchases
Mentions of Disneyland, Alice in Wonderland, a Juicy track suit.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Mention that fairy Mulch Diggums drank a whole cellar's worth of wine.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Last Guardian is the eighth and final book in the main Artemis Fowl storyline. There's a 2019 spin-off series about Artemis' little brothers called The Fowl Twins (release date Nov. 5) and a 2020 movie based on the first two Artemis Fowl books. As with the first book, Artemis Fowl, and all that follow, there's much fantasy violence here, mostly involving fairy technology. Tech explodes all over the human and fairy worlds, killing countless innocents with talk of possible Armageddon. Characters are shot and killed, one after she is ransomed and demands aren't met. There are injuries and knock-outs from a ship crash, an airplane crash, a rampaging troll and goblins, arrows, and magical blasts -- most can be magically healed. Characters, including 4-year-old boys, are possessed and told to attack others. Fans who have followed Artemis' journey this far will know how far he's come, from criminal mastermind and loner to someone who will sacrifice anything for his friends. Even the thief Mulch Diggums has his heroic moment here, though he also admits to drinking all the wine in the Fowl cellar.
Is It Any Good?
Artemis fans will thoroughly enjoy this fast-paced finale that takes on the biggest villain of the series -- the pixie Opal Koboi -- with no less than Armageddon at stake. All of Artemis' friends need to step up here, and, as usual, Mulch Diggums has a heroic, yet gassy role to play. As Opal's maniacal plan unfolds, readers wait with glee for Artemis' usual brilliant counterattack. The final grandstanding takes place on the Fowl estate -- Artemis' home turf -- but it's still not an easy fight to win.
Author Eoin Colfer brings the much-loved series to a close with his usual fun fairy-tech flourishes and humor. More time could have been given to the final third in general -- that fantastic troll ride goes by way too fast, as do Holly and Artemis' moments together -- but it's all still well worth the wild ride.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.