After writing the eighth instalment of Artemis's adventures, which centre on the misdeeds of a 12-year-old genius descended from a long line of criminal masterminds, Colfer had had enough, opting to take a breather from the series. An earlier film version failed to get off the ground and Colfer turned instead to other projects: a musical, a play ("about a puppet turkey"), crime novels for adults, a graphic novel about refugees called Illegal, and his first fantasy novel for adults, Highfire, which is out in January ("I call it dragon noir").

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