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The Haven Herald

Article: An Open Letter to All Parents Who Think That Artemis Fowl Would Make Their Children Evil

Dear Utterly Concerned Parents,

A couple of weeks ago, I overheard two mothers condemn the Artemis Fowl books while I was browsing my local bookstore. They talked about the evils of today’s young adult literature and how they hate that person who “came up with the idea of brainwashing our children with criminal mastermind nonsense”. After witchcraft, they complained, how dare they encourage our children to lie, cheat, steal, kidnap, extort, pirate, hack, and engage in many such criminal activities? Where is this world going to? They also mentioned reading a couple of book reviews that confirmed their suspicions. Before I could have reacted, the two women left.

First of all, this isn’t “criminal mastermind” nonsense. True, the third and fourth Artemis Fowl books were “rejected from a selection list for Vista San Gabriel Elementary School, Wilsona School District CA” last year, but that doesn’t really mean anything as far as criminal activities would go (take note that they only rejected Books 3 and 4 which is highly inconsistent). Parents, if you have read the first Artemis Fowl book and cringed at the thought of your kids reading something that celebrates–nay, encourages, as it seems!–this “nasty, nasty, obnoxious” little boy’s devious ways, you may want to open up your mind a little bit.

Artemis Fowl isn’t a nasty nasty little boy–that’s only a shallow generalization. He appears to be a misguided character at the beginning–a perfect example of a misguided Machiavellian consequentialist, perhaps. At the end of the first book, he finds a way to heal his mother. By the second book, he goes on a mission to rescue his father. By the end of the fifth book, Artemis had gotten a personality overhaul. This is a young adult series after all, so there has got to be a moment of reformation somewhere.

Colfer said in an interview that he does intend to make Artemis Fowl change for the better, and true enough, if you, dear parents, have read up to the fifth book (which I highly doubt), Artemis does. Who in their right mind would really really encourage children to lie, cheat, steal and be dishonest? The lying, cheating, and kidnapping found in the books are all but elements to the story. They help create Colfer’s picture of a dashing “anti-hero”: the “anti-It” boy to those other squeaky clean “It” boys in the same literary genre.

Also, children should not be left at the mercy of anything they read, whether they be Artemis Fowl, Harry Potter, or any other young adult novel. While it could be very convenient to lock your child in a room full of books made for his or her age group, it is important to be there along the way. Of course, reading should promote learning and discovery, but one should not forget about an important aspect: critical thinking. If parents would take some time to read and dialogue with their kids, then obviously, they would learn not to gobble up anything that is thrown at them. With active reading, questions would be raised, discussions would be opened, and thoughts would be exchanged.

“I would never ever let my boys read this,” said one of those mothers at the bookstore, and it’s a pity because the mother assumes that her boys do not know how to think for themselves. No, Artemis Fowl would not make your child utterly evil. Assuming that it does and depriving your child of a good, fun book almost is.

Critical thinking is key.

Sincerely,
An Artemis Fowl Fan Who Has Not Turned Evil

PS: Let’s celebrate open-mindedness, critical thinking, and acceptance by checking out other books from the American Library Association’s Banned Books Week celebration!

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Comments on This Post

18 responses to “The Haven Herald.” Join in!

  1. as always, Haven Herald is AWESOME!!! 😀

  2. Mentos_not_mental October 14th, 2007 at 7:19 pm 2

    Awesome newsletter. Congrats to MMK, veelagirl, Hiram Abif, lenore, 1hollyfan, and jobiexoxo!
    Good job on this everyone! Everyone loves it!

  3. The video came before the release of comic. I saw it on YouTube.

  4. Oooh…the avatar/icon is from the movie Anastasia! One of my faves…

    Anywho…congrats veelagirl! And all you guys who won too! *claps*

  5. AWESOME! I like the open letter part!

  6. REDAER DNIM EHT October 15th, 2007 at 9:39 pm 6

    Thank you very much for posting my article.

    All the best,

    REDAER DNIM EHT

  7. Well I’m glad you like our third issue of The Haven Herald:D.
    I have to congratulate all of the this months winners!!!!!

  8. Hey, I love the Blue Sword, and I was about to suggest it…Too late I see, but I’m glad Robin McKinley got a rightful place in this issue. I absolutely love the Blue Sword, and for all those who wonder, The Hero And the Crown was written after the Blue Sword, and is it’s sequel, but It takes place before the time of Harry and Corlath; about 100 years before.

  9. Hey con grats!!!

  10. Well Done u Guyz!!! *Claps* Con Gratz 4 all of u although Hiram Abif… Opal Koboi Hot?Seriously? (Giggle)

  11. Yet another brilliant read from the Haven Herald! REDAER is so right about Colfer, if you haven’t met him yet you’ve been seriously missing out. I’ll never forget when I got my Opal Deception signed. I told him about my Irish ancestry and he said these exact words: ‘Don’t go telling everyone about that, you’ll make them jealous’. I think I’ll remember that for the rest of my life 😀

    I would also request Garth Nix’s Keys to the Kingdom series and Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials series.
    The first book of Keys to the Kingdom, Mister Monday, is basically about a young boy named Arthur who literally has greatness thrust upon him, when he discovers that he must retrieve the Keys to the Kingdom from the Morrow Days, each one of whom will bring a new challenge for Arthur. I also think that Suzy, Arthur’s gutsy and brave accomplice, will remind a few people of Mona from The Supernaturalists. The series is not complete yet, but the books available now are Mister Monday, Grim Tuesday, Drowned Wednesday and Sir Thursday.
    His Dark Materials is centred around Lyra, a girl who is eager to escape from Jordan College, the place of her restricted upbringing and find out about the world around her. Her prayers appear to be answered when she recieves the Alethiometer, a strange compass that holds many secrets. However, this great treasure also brings great peril for Lyra and she must encounter many dangers as well as new experiences as she matures and discovers the mysteries of the Alethiometer. There are three books in total, The Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass.

    Congrats to all of the winners!!!

    Love, Lizzie xxx

  12. I was going to put His Dark Materials! I thought I’d save ’em for another issue though.
    I’ve never heard of Keys to the Kingdom. Maybe I’ll read them…

  13. Keys to the Kingdom are really, really, good. I’d definitely recommend them too.

    Anyway, this was another great issue! 🙂

  14. I can’t believe I won siggie of the month! Thanks, I owe it to you. Congrats to all of the other winners, love you lenore and veelagirl!

  15. Why not.You’re siggie is awesome 1hollyfan.

    Like BlackOpal said we thought about His Dark Materials so you can expect it very soon.And I never heard about Keys to the Kingdom either.It sounds interesting!!!

  16. This fan gathering is the best way for all fowl fans to come together and rite fan fix

  17. F.A.B I agree. Those books are good too.

  18. does anyone no if its free?

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