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Publisher's Summary

Conor Broekhart was born to fly. In fact, legend has it that he was born flying, in a hot air balloon at the Paris World's Fair.

In the 1890s Conor and his family live on the sovereign Saltee Islands, off the Irish coast. Conor spends his days studying the science of flight with his tutor and exploring the castle with the king's daughter, Princess Isabella. But the boy's idyllic life changes forever the day he discovers a deadly conspiracy against the king. When Conor tries to intervene, he is branded a traitor and thrown into jail on the prison island of Little Saltee. There, he has to fight for his life, as he and the other prisoners are forced to mine for diamonds in inhumane conditions.

There is only one way to escape Little Saltee, and that is to fly. So Conor passes the solitary months by scratching drawings of flying machines on the prison walls. The months turn into years; but eventually the day comes when Conor must find the courage to trust his revolutionary designs and take to the skies.

©2008 Eoin Colfer (P)2008 Random House, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Story

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Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Carl
  • West Palm Beach, FL, United States
  • 03-07-08

Another Eoin Colfer Winner

Another Eoin Colfer winner. This one will also appeal to adults versus most of his other works which aim more for young readers to teenagers.

The story is a type of "Count of Monte Cristo" tale but with some wonderful twists and innovations. The story of early flying makes it real magic.

The reader is awesome with just a little Irish accent to giving the reading flavor without making it difficult for your typical American, like me, to understand.

Fun read and think it would make a great movie...

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

adventure,charming atmosphere, worthy characters

The author of the Artemis Fowl series brings this story of an island kingdom from the last century alive with excitement. The requisite princess and hero start as babes and suffer through love, murder, greed, power hungry attacks,a prison like the Chateau D'If, and the imagination to want to fly. There are great characters who support the story throughout.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Keenan
  • Anchorage Alaska
  • 09-24-16

Swashbuckling coming of age story

Would you consider the audio edition of Airman to be better than the print version?

Yes.

What other book might you compare Airman to and why?

Huckleberry Finn because the protagonist is a boy who is thrust into an adventure.

What does John Keating bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

So much depth and enthusiasm! I'd listen to John Keating reading a grocery list.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

There is a scene reminiscent of Peter Pan, when the lost boy looks in on his family years later and sees they have another child.

Any additional comments?

It's not just YA and it's not just for boys!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Kurt
  • LaFayette, NY USA
  • 12-05-11

Very enjoyable!

I really enjoyed this book - not as good as Half-Moon or some of the Artemis books, but still entertaining. Classic Colfer quirky style. John Keating does an outstanding job of reading.

Takes place in the late 1800's and Conor wants to fly. Actually, you could say he was born flying. Life is good for the young Conor - loving family, the king's favor (and the king's daughter too), and an inspiring tutor. But all is not well on the island when the king's enemy decides that Conor is a threat.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Karen
  • saluda, SC, United States
  • 10-07-11

Fantasic Read

i really enjoyed this one! its SO worth getting and made for a quiet winter evening .

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Super Story!

My kids and I couldn't wait to get back in the car to listen to this book! Great story. We were sorry when we were done with it...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Justin
  • Tallahassee, FL, USA
  • 08-12-09

Fell flat for me...

It may be that the Artemis Fowl books were SO amazing that I expected too much. It may have been John Keating's reading. I haven't heard him read before but it wasn't the greatest. The story lacked the adventure of the Artemis Series and the characters felt less developed... I actually got a strong overtone of a children's version of The Count of Monte Cristo, but The Count was better.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

so amazing,

I will listen to this book over and over. it is so amazingly wonderful. Worth purchasing..

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great science, great story, great narration!

I love the aviation science and the suspenseful, complex plot of this book. It even has a little romance! Great read!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

High Adventure at it's Best

A tale of high adventure on the level of Dumas. Colfer is such a brilliant storyteller and the fun he is having here is apparent as you listen to the drama unfold. While I never quite worried that Connor would fail, I was completely caught up by what his success would cost him. Also, I haven't seen a villain like Bonvilland (spelling?) since Dolores Umbridge. I loved to hate him and root for Connor's eventual revenge against the man who destroys his life.
As for the narrator, John Keating is one of the best. The voices he is capable of creating bring Colfer's beautiful characters to life.
If you love adventure fiction, look no further. Though this is a story for children, it's a tale for the ages that all will love. I intend to return to this book to read it to my own children and can hardly wait to do so.