The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake | Book Review


book #1 in the Altas series

Rating: 1 out of 5.

I’ve wasted my time on this so you don’t have to.

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Author: Olivie Blake
Published: January 2020
Publisher: Tor Books
Pages: 373 (hardback)

The betrayal of the tiktok hype stings deep with this one. Endless special editions and gushing reviews had me convinced this was a sure thing.

But I was bored out of my brains and angry – I’ve never been so furious at how badly written a book is.

There is no plot, and I’m not just being flippant. This is supposed to take place over a year but no sense of time passing is offered. The characters are wishy washy and unlikeable. I’ve still no idea what motivates them to go to such extremes to stay at the academy.

What did I just read? What does the academy even offer other than a library?? What on earth have they been doing for a year???

The characters talk for 99% of the book. The exciting scenes (there are 2 and they last for 1 page each) are lacklustre because you’re too busy wallowing in a pit of despair wondering whether to DNF the book.

I should’ve, but everyone said it got better at 75%. It didn’t. And why should I have to wait that long for a book to get good anyway?

The reading experience of this book felt like listening to someone take 128272 attempts to start a sentence but never make a point.

If I were really to go down the rabbit hole – one thing I hated was how the author has failed to construct personalities and used stereotypical representations of mental health/gendered behaviour as a crutch instead. It’s uncomfortable and odd, to say the least. It’s somewhat unkind, yet too broadly applied to *all* the characters to say it’s just the mean attitude of a single one.

Just don’t bother. This needs not just a helpful editor but a healthy rewrite to excavate some plot and put it in the right order.

Title: The Atlas Six
Series title: The Atlas
Author: Olivie Blake
Purchase: Angus & Robertson
Add it on Goodreads

The Alexandrian Society is a secret society of magical academicians, the best in the world. Their members are caretakers of lost knowledge from the greatest civilizations of antiquity. And those who earn a place among their number will secure a life of wealth, power, and prestige beyond their wildest dreams. Each decade, the world’s six most uniquely talented magicians are selected for initiation – and here are the chosen few…

– Libby Rhodes and Nicolás Ferrer de Varona: inseparable enemies, cosmologists who can control matter with their minds.
– Reina Mori: a naturalist who can speak the language of life itself.
– Parisa Kamali: a mind reader whose powers of seduction are unmatched.
– Tristan Caine: the son of a crime kingpin who can see the secrets of the universe.
– Callum Nova: an insanely rich pretty boy who could bring about the end of the world. He need only ask.

When the candidates are recruited by the mysterious Atlas Blakely, they are told they must spend one year together to qualify for initiation. During this time, they will be permitted access to the Society’s archives and judged on their contributions to arcane areas of knowledge. Five, they are told, will be initiated. One will be eliminated. If they can prove themselves to be the best, they will survive. Most of them.

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