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Arthur and the Minimoysby Luc Besson
Synopses & Reviews
Deep underground, the Minimoys are waiting...for a champion.
Arthur's grandfather disappeared four years ago. All he left behind are his notebooks full of stories about little-known African tribes — including the Minimoys, a miniature people who are all less than one inch tall.
But the Minimoys can't possibly be real...can they?
Arthur is about to find out, as he uncovers a hidden message that catapults him on an adventure wilder than he had ever imagined. In just three days, he must find a way to the land of the Minimoys, recover a stolen treasure, battle an invading force of mosquito-riding warriors, defeat an evil wizard, win the heart of a very independent princess — and somehow get back home again.
It seems like an impossible task, but as he'll discover along the way, sometimes the littlest heroes can make the biggest difference...
"French filmmaker Besson (La Femme Nikita) tries his hand at middle-grade fantasy; unfortunately, the results are thumbs-down. Half the book sets up the action: Arthur, 10, lives with his grandmother while his parents seek work elsewhere. His grandfather, an erstwhile anthropologist specializing in African tribes, disappeared nearly four years earlier. Grandma is out of money and a sinister developer with designs on her property is turning the screws. After antique dealers haul off Grandpa's artifacts (which they value at $300 — but Grandma still winds up three dollars shy of what she needs to forestall eviction), Arthur finds clues that explain Grandpa's disappearance. One rather simplistic plot turn after another leads him to the Minimoys, a race of tiny people living in the garden. The pace picks up exponentially as Arthur joins the nasty but beautiful Princess Selenia in a mission to Necropolis, to seek his grandfather, his grandfather's treasure and to confront 'M. the cursed,' archenemy of the Minimoys. The action-adventure scenes feature some nice details (M.'s henchmen ride mosquitoes; the Minimoys attack them with a catapult that fires raisins) but loose threads and lapses in logic abound. One such thread, suggesting marriage between Arthur and Selenia, seems farfetched given his age and her malice. A sequel, Arthur and the Forbidden City (whose title suggests that the hero may finally get to Necropolis), is due this fall. Ages 8-12." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Although this was a best-seller in France, some of its charm must have been lost in translation....Besson, a movie writer and director, offers a real hodge-podge here, which includes a nod to Arthurian legend." Booklist
In search of a stolen treasure and his missing grandfather, ten-year-old Arthur travels to the land of the Minimoys, a tribe of tiny people whom he must save from destruction.
A dazzling success when published in France, this stunning debut by the film director of La Femme Nikita is an enchanting tale of unexpected heroism, love, and a small quest with huge consequences.
About the Author
Luc Besson is the internationally renowned and award-winning writer/director/producer behind such movies as The Fifth Element, The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc, and La Femme Nikita. Arthur and the Minimoys is his first novel for young readers, soon to be followed by the sequel, Arthur and the Forbidden City. He is currently working on a movie based on both books to be released in 2006.
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