The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake
March 1, 2022
Review by Jen
First, I’m so excited that I found libro.fm because it’s a book site that supports independent booksellers. I love Amazon, but this was a nice find.
The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake is a dark academia book that has been on my list for quite a while. It was a huge hit on booktok and was optioned by Amazon for a series. I ended up listening to this one and really enjoyed it! With that said, this book is QUITE ambitious! There are so many characters to set up and a world to build. It’s an original plot surrounding six of the best magical young adults in the world. A mysterious man, Atlas Blakely, approaches each of the six with a vague offer to be apart of something tremendous, leaves his business card and disappears. Each of the six have a different unique and very powerful magic. All of them take Atlas up on his offer and show up at an old house that houses a huge library full of knowledge that most of the world can’t access.
It’s equal parts MTV’s The Real World, The Breakfast Club and Harry Potter. Each magical being has their own distinct personality and secrets. We have an empath, a telepath, a woman who can talk to and command plants, people that can manipulate the physical, and an illusionist. They all screw with each other and play mind games, trying to outsmart each other and figure out everyone else’s powers and weaknesses.
In some ways, I’m not exactly sure what I read. I have so many questions! The premise is that while six recruits are invited to be part of this exclusive club (The Alexandrian Society), only five will be inducted. Sooo….they’re competing against each other for the coveted five spots. Not everyone is a nice person. It’s cut throat. There’s seduction, lies, cheating, alliances and some major twists.
If you’re looking for hot steamy romance, this isn’t it. But, if you want a more grown up Harry Potter like read, this might just do it for you. I loved the concept, the voice actors were great, and I’m all in for book two. There’s some depth to this story, too. It’s not just a magical race to the finish. The characters are complex with intriguing back stories and complicated relationships. That’s a good thing and it also hinders the plot a bit, too. This first book was definitely light on plot. The last third of the book got super crazy and really interesting!
It also brought up a philosophical question of who owns knowledge? Should all information be part of the public discourse and available to anyone? Atlas would say no. There’s also a major elephant in the room about life and death, and who is valuable and deserves to live. Six people are chosen for the honor of being part of this special club, but there are only five slots available. Someone must die. And, can that person accept the decision and consider their death a sacrifice for the greater good?