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ATLANTIS, THE LEGEND OF A LOST CITY

Written and illustrated by Christina Balit, published in 1999 by Francis Lincoln Publishers

 

SYNOPSIS

“Floating on the emerald sea is a small rocky island belonging to the mighty sea-god Posiedon.  Few visit its shores – until Posiedon marries a beautiful islander called Cleito and transforms the island into a rich and fertile paradise, where all things flourish and a magnificient city arises.  Posiedon names his perfect island Altlantis, after his firstborn son, Atlas.  Atlantis prospers, and the people live in peace, but as the years pass Poseidon’s descendants start to act less like gods and more like men.”

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“I based this story (and the architecture and costumes within the illustrations) upon the theory that the legend of Atlantis may have originated from the mystery that surrounds the sudden demise of the Minoan civilization on Crete.  Minoan cities and towns lay, in part, along the northern coast of the island.  It is believed they were most likely destroyed by the Tsunami that followed the enormous eruption that tore apart the island of Santorini a hundred miles north.  Sadly, whether Atlantis ever existed at all still remains a mystery…and perhaps, from a story telling point of view that’s a good thing.”

‘Stylized, intensely colored and highly detailed illustrations dominate this interpretation of Plato's myth of the lost city of Atlantis. Balit (Zoo in the Sky: A Book of Animal Constellations) gracefully retells the story, beginning with Poseidon's love for the island girl Cleito, and lingering on his transformation of the island into a paradise.’

 

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY 

 

 

'Such a mystical tale deserves the fanciful visual setting on these double pages. Figures are stylized, hinting at those found on ancient Crete, with multi-patterned clothes and ornate hairstyles. Everything glitters, all surfaces are decorated, almost every square inch is alive with surface embellishments. The pages are redolent with exotic visuals that fill our eyes with the story of human glory destroyed by human folly.'

 

Children’s literature

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