Atlantis: The Accidental Invasion by Gregory Mone is a fun new middle grade fantasy. In Atlantis, we follow Kaya and Lewis as they discover each other’s worlds.
Kaya, raised in the undersea, high-tech world of Atlantis, has always been fascinated by the legends about life above the water. Despite the government’s insistence that they’re only stories, she can’t help but dream about the Sun People—and when a group of officials known as Erasers move to bury those legends for good, Kaya sets out to the surface to uncover the truth once and for all.
In the world above, where climate change has led to giant tsunamis that threaten Earth’s coasts, all Lewis wants is to spend more time with his scientist father. When he stows away on his dad’s top-secret research trip, he finds himself thrown headfirst into an adventure much bigger than he bargained for.
Fast-paced and action-packed, The Accidental Invasion brings readers into a world unlike anything they’ve seen before. Bonus content includes real scientific information about genetic modification, earthquakes, nuclear power, and plate tectonics.
“Sometimes Kaya wondered if the stories weren’t meant to help her rest. Maybe they were supposed to spark her dreams.”
Atlantis was a really interesting take on a common story. Instead of focusing solely on the discovery of the underwater world, we got a focus on both sides. I really enjoyed reading Lewis’s above ground 11-year-old thoughts the most. He was funny and likeable, and his mindset was really written accurately for his age. Kaya, on the other hand, felt very classically rebellious teenager and I can’t help but feel bored by that. The tech friend was also really fun to read from and I almost wish Kaya had been given her personality instead. Lewis’s father is a frustrating and relatively unlikable character who regularly seems to put his science first and his son second. Even in the somewhat resolution of this, I didn’t feel any better about their relationship. I wanted more for Lewis with regards to this specifically.
The writing was very descriptive, and because both of the groups were seeing each other for the first time, we got well-explained descriptors for everyone’s appearance. The underwater world and the way their homes worked was unique, as well as cars and technology. I found the science behind these stories really interesting and realistic as well. However, the pacing for this was not as exciting as I would have expected. It was described as fast-paced, but it felt like a lot of back and forth and betrayal, but not a lot of actual action occurring. The majority of the story is spent with everyone on the run, and these parts- while interesting- could have been fleshed out a little differently to retain my attention span.
“There has to be more to the world than Atlantis, and I’m going to discover the truth.”
The added on science explanation at the end of the book was actually really cool! I liked that the author explained why the Atlanteans weren’t mermaids, and how evolution works. I think from a middle-grade standpoint, this book could be used in science classes to explain a lot of different things: from audio technology to radio waves, how evolution works, and oceanic creatures. The ending also left us with a bit of a cliffhanger, and I will admit that I am extremely interested to find out what it means!
Thank you to Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.