Airman is novel written by Eoin Colfer, an author best known for the Artemis Fowl series. In Airman, Colfer creates a dark world structured in the late nineteenth century.
The story centers around Conor Broekhart, a young boy who was knighted after an incident at the king’s tower. Conor’s greatest dream is to fly. He was born in a hot air balloon, and since then he has been working with a French scientist, creating designs and models for flying machines, hoping to perfect the design and take to the skies. One day, Conor overhears a conspiracy against the king, and to keep him from telling people, they kidnap and imprison him. He spends months in the cell, all the while secretly working on his flying invention. The time comes for his escape plan, and he has to finally put his plans to work and use the flying mechanisms he designed in order to save his life.
I think this is an entertaining and interesting story, and I would recommend it to more patient readers because things move along pretty slow. The themes in the book are betrayal and fighting for survival, which are conveyed prominently. As in, when Conor is captured by the guards, they tell him that no one will believe him if he tells the kingdom about the plan. It shows that half of the royals were involved with this, which shows, on a greater scale, the betrayal the kingdom directed toward their own ruler.
The downside to this book is that it takes a while to get to the point, and at times there isn’t really anything important going on and it just drags out. This is especially a problem in the time Conor is spending in imprisonment, working on his designs.
In short, Airman is an interesting, and original book with just a few negative things, but still good for avid readers to pick up. I’d give it a 3.5/5