Book (ARC) Review: HighFire

This review is for all the now-adult Artemis Fowl fans out in the world. Mr. Eoin Colfer wrote this appropriate aged book just for you 20 something readers out there.
I’m passing my ARC into the hands of my now adult sons, and I’ll update with their impressions.

Vern is an ancient dragon hiding out in the Bayou. He’s moved with the times; he even had a social media account for a while. He had to shut it down eventually because some nosy humans got too close to him. (Even dragons worry about their digital footprints!)

The dragon has a long-time handler, Waxman, who needs a break and hires a human boy, Squib, to do all the things that Vern can’t do himself in the modern world. Vern is the definition of a cranky old creature; he’s rude and likes his things just so. I love that the boy is named Squib, and the bad guy is Constable Hooke. It’s so on the nose funny.
As far as the basic plot, it’s dragon vs. all humans, and then after the dragon has a change of heart, it’s corrupt constable vs. honest townspeople with a heroesque dragon.
I feel like this book is going to be very hit or miss. The writing is excellent (those action scenes are some of the best I’ve ever read!), and even though I found the plot predictable. I wanted to love it because I have loved the Artemis Fowl books that the author also wrote.

Some of the storyline that made it Adult vs. YA was a bit over the top in crassness, but hey, if that’s your thing, I get it.
What makes it adult vs. YA? All of it. I mean, you’ve got adult behavior, (drinking, drug use) swearing, gore, straight up violence and you’ll be laughing through the whole thing.

I almost feel like he wrote it for himself, which is cool. It may be a predictable plot, but the action is nonstop, and I have to admire the author for not trying to make the story fit in some predictably sellable genre. I think that’s the main reason I enjoyed it so much. I had an idea where it was going but no idea how he was going to drive the story there. Does that make sense?

It seems like it’s set up for a sequel, too, which is good news for fans of this new world.

Highfire is scheduled for publication January 28, 2020

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