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ATLANTIS by Christina Balit


The Legend of a Lost City

adapted by Christina Balit & illustrated by Christina Balit

Age Range: 8 - 10

Pub Date: May 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-8050-6334-X
Publisher: Henry Holt

Balit (Twelve Labors of Hercules, 1997) recasts Ancient World accounts into a spare narrative, describing Atlantis’s creation as Poseidon’s wedding gift to his mortal bride Cleito, its idyllic early history, gradual descent into lawlessness, and final punitive submergence. In page-and-a-half-spread paintings that evoke ancient styles without copying them, figures posing in dignified, majestic profile give way to smaller scenes of urban decay and street violence, culminating in a mighty wave driven by Poseidon’s anger, and a final view of broken, coral-decorated buildings. Though the story has often been told at greater length, this is a new format for it. A closing note by Geoffrey Ashe, author of Atlantis: Lost Lands, Ancient Wisdom (not reviewed), puts the tale into both historical and cultural perspective. (Picture book/folk tale. 8-10)