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Can you hear Atlantia breathing?

For as long as she can remember, Rio has dreamed of the sand and sky Above—of life beyond her underwater city of Atlantia. But in a single moment, all Rio’s hopes for the future are shattered when her twin sister, Bay, makes an unexpected choice, stranding Rio Below. Alone, ripped away from the last person who knew Rio’s true self—and the powerful siren voice she has long silenced—she has nothing left to lose.

Guided by a dangerous and unlikely mentor, Rio formulates a plan that leads to increasingly treacherous questions about her mother’s death, her own destiny, and the corrupted system constructed to govern the Divide between land and sea. Her life and her city depend on Rio to listen to the voices of the past and to speak long-hidden truths.

368 pages, Paperback

First published October 28, 2014

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About the author

Ally Condie

48 books13.9k followers
Ally Condie is a former high school English teacher who lives with her husband, three sons and one daughter outside of Salt Lake City, Utah. She loves reading, running, eating, and listening to her husband play guitar.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,481 reviews
Profile Image for Paula M.
547 reviews641 followers
February 25, 2016
The problem with Atlantia is that it’s so boring I’d rather eat nails than read it again. Or finish it. This is my first from Ally Condie. And probably my last if this is how she writes in all her books.

“He kisses me.. He is good at this. I am good at this. We are good at this”



“She’s going to tell me the story, and I’m going to listen. And I am afraid.”

The author needs to be informed that we are not toddlers anymore. She needs to know that. Anyway, I did my best to just ignore the writing even though it is so distracting. I tried to focus more on the plot that is so so so exciting.


HA. I’m so good at sarcasm. Rio’s sister Bay left her to be in the Above. When we say ‘Above’ it means the land. So that left Rio all by herself because her Mother  just died and her Father was dead long time ago. But no worries, her Aunt Maire who is equally as boring as her is still Below. (Below is, obviously, the sea)Even though she is reluctant to ask for help, she was desperate to find out why her sister left her alone Below. Good thing she met this boy whose name is so stupid I CANNOT UNDERSATND WHY IS HE NAMED LIKE THIS. His name is True Beck. True Beck also wants to know why his friend went above that’s why he wants to help the boring and incredibly bland Rio.

Also, True Beck knows Rio’s secret.. AND WHAT SECRET IS THAT? Well, I don’t want to spoil you because I’m not mean. And besides, if you decided to read this book, it might be the only thing that keeps you going.

Peoples, ATLANTIA is so boring. There’s no BOOM. No FEELS. Nothing amazing or awesome or good about it. I’m so harsh, I’m sorry. But it’s the truth. The premise is really fascinating. I thought they were mermaids but they’re not and I was actually okay with that. But the execution was so MEH.

The only good thing here is that it’s not a series. YAY!! We can save some money.

You can also read my review HERE..color: rgb(0, 0, 0);/b/span
Profile Image for Kassidy.
338 reviews11k followers
November 22, 2014
I was really hoping to like this, but I just don't think Ally Condie's books are meant for me.

This story has a cool, unique, and clever premise, but unfortunately it did not deliver. The idea of Atlantia is neat and I was very interested to see how a world can exist underwater. However, the world building is so underdeveloped.
I could not picture what it looked like, and it just did not make sense. The elements of the world felt very random and thrown together. I did not buy into it at all and I was confused on how it worked and operated. It is almost like the author is describing it as if the reader should already know what it looks like and how it works.
Rio is supposed to be a siren, but I could never fully grasp what being a siren meant or how they came to be, so it just left me confused.

The characters are generic and dull. Rio has some spunk, but she did not feel real. I could not connect to her or the others. They feel like cookie-cutter characters. Along with that, there is a one dimension romance that made me feel nothing.
I don't want to sound cold-hearted, but honestly, nothing in this story made me care or feel emotion.

The plot is basic and I kept waiting for something exciting to happen, but every plot development is underwhelming. It is fairly predictable, but mostly it's underdeveloped. The writing is simple and not cohesive. I really had to force myself to get through this book.

I admire the creativity of the premise and the world. It is a hybrid dystopia/fantasy, and unlike any world I have read before. I also like the family dynamics. Rio and Bay have an interesting relationship. It parallels the relationship of their mother and aunt. I think this could have been a really great element and layer of the story to explore. I just wish that I believed in it.
I couldn't help but feel disconnected and unemotional towards the story.

Even if a book isn't amazing, I will give it some credit if it kept me entertained. This one, however, was tough to get through. It definitely did not click with me.

*I received a free hardcover copy of this book from Penguin in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own*

Review originally posted at: http://travelingthroughpages.booklike...
Profile Image for Samantha.
417 reviews16.7k followers
May 9, 2016
Before I get into the review, let me just point out that Atlantia is horribly mis-marketed. If it had been marketed properly, I probably would not have picked it up. From the synopsis and the cover art, it is implied that this is going to be a mermaid story. It is not. It is a dystopian taking place in an city enclosed underwater. This wouldn't be a problem, except for the fact that I wasn't even able to finish Condie's other dystopian series, Matched. If I would have known I was heading into another dystopian, I probably would have passed on this one.

As with Condie's Matched series, I found the world building in this story to be lackluster. There is a strong focus on the religious beliefs of this society, but other than that, there is no real reason given for why the rules, regulations, and rituals of the society exists. We also are not given much actual description of what is probably a very cool underwater world.

The characters of Atlantia are also pretty flat. I found our main character to be very similar to the main character in Matched. I didn't understand many of her motives. She discusses how disconnected she felt from her twin sister, but then is spending all of her time trying to get back to her sister because she "needs" her. It doesn't match up. Thankfully, this story was lighter on the romance than Matched was, and that was my biggest concern. I wasn't attached to the romance in this story, but I wasn't particularly bothered with it either. The villain was also a mustache-twirling bad guy, and very one dimensional.

Lastly, I found the plot generally enjoyable. It was a slow read at times, but there was a mystery element to it that I found engaging. Parts of that mystery element did drag, but overall, I still wanted to know how everything was going to turn out. By the end, I was left with all of my questions answered and was glad it wasn't extended out into an unnecessary trilogy.

 This review was originally posted on Thoughts on Tomes
Profile Image for Jessy MelodyofBooks.
224 reviews1,568 followers
May 14, 2019
Also gegen aller Erwartungen oder vielleicht genau deswegen, fand ich die Gesichte gut. Christine Marx liest das Hörbuch wieder einmal vortrefflich und hat mir somit ein hörvergnügen bereitet. Ich bin schnell und flüssig durch die Geschichte gekommen, fand das worldbuilding interessant und mochte auch die Geheimnisse rund um unsere Protagonistin und ihre Familie. Es ist eher eine ruhigere Geschichte, die nicht eine Explosion, einen Kampf und ähnliches nach dem nächsten hat, aber trotzdem eine Botschaft transportiert, die wichtig ist: egal woher man kommt oder stammt, jedes Leben ist wichtig.
Profile Image for Kathy.
2,741 reviews5,976 followers
October 22, 2014
This book was nothing like I was expecting it to be. I was expecting Mermaids. I expected lots of romance. I expected predictability.

I'm not exactly sure why I thought mermaids. The summary says sirens, they live underwater, this is fantasy... I was not expecting the people of Atlantia to be humans living in an underground city.

I was expecting more romance than what was in this book. There was romance, and the part it played was very sweet and such a great part of the story but it was definitely not the main focus of the book.

I expected a predictable story line but I had no idea how this was going to play out and I was left guessing until the end.

I'm a fairly fast reader and this is not a long book but it took me a couple of days to read. Ally writes so beautifully that it is not a book to speed read through. Things move a little slowly especially during the first half of the book. This had lots more narration and way less dialogue than many young adult books. I was scheduled to review this on Tuesday but I was only half way through the book. I didn't want to skim it or race through it so instead I opted to postpone my scheduled review so I could take my time enjoying this one.

Atlantia really is a beautifully done story worth reading.

Rating: 4 Stars - Great Book!

Content: Clean

Source: ARC from publisher
Profile Image for Laura.
471 reviews557 followers
April 9, 2015
| DNF at 78% |


Blurb: Can you hear Atlantia breathing?
For as long as she can remember, Rio has dreamt of the sand and sky Above—of life beyond her underwater city of Atlantia. But in a single moment, all her plans for the future are thwarted when her twin sister, Bay, makes an unexpected decision, stranding Rio Below. Alone, ripped away from the last person who knew Rio’s true self—and the powerful siren voice she has long hidden—she has nothing left to lose.
Guided by a dangerous and unlikely mentor, Rio formulates a plan that leads to increasingly treacherous questions about her mother’s death, her own destiny, and the complex system constructed to govern the divide between land and sea. Her life and her city depend on Rio to listen to the voices of the past and to speak long-hidden truths.


I really really wanted to like this book and actually finish it but I just couldn't.

When I first started reading I got bored quite quickly. I wasn't even in chapter 3 and I was already looking at my wall, wondering why I picked up the book.

I thought I was reading Divergent or something because I was thrown into this ceremony where you choose whether to stay Below, in Atlantia, or go suffering Above, in Earth. And do you know, the MC wanted so bad to go Above but she chooses to stay because her mom just died and her sister is there and she made her promised she'd stay but is her sister the one who goes Above. Boo, big fucking surprise.

I was done by that point but I forced myself and I continued reading and reading and I thought things were going to get better because "secrets" were being revealed and all of that but I just didn't like Rio at all. She was such a boring character and such a whiny little girl who can't take decisions and is always afraid.


The Rio Sorry Fest went on and on and on through the whole book and when things started to get a bit better, it was way too late. I couldn't care less about it.

It's sad, you know? This book had all the things I like! Mythology, ocean, a whole new civilization but it didn't work out.

I just want to forget the whole thing.
Profile Image for Kristina Horner.
157 reviews1,812 followers
October 27, 2014
This book was gorgeous, exhilarating, and broke my expectations again and again. It could have easily been another dystopian love triangle but it surprised me over and over again. I loved it.
Profile Image for Evie.
711 reviews924 followers
November 4, 2014
DNF at 100 pages

This was, essentially, a yawn-fest. Every time I would pick it up, I would get through 20-30 pages and then I would fall asleep. My eyes were literally tearing up from yawning, guys, this has never happened to me before - at leas not to this extent. Sadly, I was not able to get immersed in this story.

The concept was very exciting and the idea of an underwater city and a society that sacrifices itself so that others can survive and live peacefully was more than intriguing and promising. But the writing really dragged this book down to the bottom of the ocean. The pacing was slow, the narrative - redundant and boring, the characters lacked any kind of characteristics that would make me root for them, or even remotely care about their fates.

I was very determined to wait it out to see if the plot picks up and if anything exciting happens later, but the first 100 pages didn't offer much to go on, and so I lost hope. And interest. I'm sad that I didn't enjoy this book more, I had such high hopes for it (mainly because of the premise).

Read it if you don't mind bland world building, slow pacing and unrelatable characters. The concept is there, but the execution is lacking in many aspects. And for the great premise alone, I am giving it two stars instead of one.
Profile Image for Alyssa.
1,069 reviews838 followers
December 10, 2014
***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

Atlantia by Ally Condie
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Publication Date: October 28, 2014
Rating: 2 stars
Source: Hardcover copy traded via YA Book Exchange

Summary (from Goodreads):

Can you hear Atlantia breathing?

For as long as she can remember, Rio has dreamt of the sand and sky Above—of life beyond her underwater city of Atlantia. But in a single moment, all her plans for the future are thwarted when her twin sister, Bay, makes an unexpected decision, stranding Rio Below. Alone, ripped away from the last person who knew Rio’s true self—and the powerful siren voice she has long hidden—she has nothing left to lose.

Guided by a dangerous and unlikely mentor, Rio formulates a plan that leads to increasingly treacherous questions about her mother’s death, her own destiny, and the complex system constructed to govern the divide between land and sea. Her life and her city depend on Rio to listen to the voices of the past and to speak long-hidden truths.

What I Liked:

Well, I really wanted to like this one. I tried. I was super excited about this one, despite not really enjoying Matched and Crossed (never read Reached). A novel about an underwater city? Cool! No mermaids? Even better. Sadly, I was disappointed.

Rio has always wanted to go Above - she's lived Below, in an underwater city called Atlantia, for her entire. There is only one way to go Above: you get a choice as a teenager. Rio's twin sister Bay made Rio promise that she wouldn't choose Above, after their mother died. But then, on the choosing day, Bay chooses Above... after Rio chose Below. Rio is determined to be reunited with her Above. As Rio searches for a way out, she discovers secrets and the true history of Atlantia, of Below and Above.

Like I said, I was really excited to read this book! I didn't get an ARC or eARC, and that was okay. When I finally got the book and started reading, I was intrigued. How dare Bay make Rio promise that she wouldn't choose Above, and then chose it herself?! And a boy also chose Above... suspicious. Poor Rio. Rio was so distraught, so alone. She literally had no one - no father (dead), no mother (dead), no sister (Above).

Rio's aunt, Maire, starts contacting Rio. Maire is a siren - like Rio. But everyone knows that Maire is a siren, whereas no one knows that Rio is one. Maire wants to help Rio go Above, but Rio doesn't trust Maire. Rio begins to uncover secrets about the city, just as the city is curiously falling apart. There has never been a better time to go Above, it seems...

The romance was probably the best thing about this book, honestly. I really like True and Rio together. They meet because True's friend is the boy that went with Bay, Above. True create mechanical fish, and Rio starts buying them to race against them, to make herself a better swimmer. True has secrets of his own, just like Rio does. He has a gentle, quiet nature, which I really liked. I liked the two of them together.

The whole underwater city thing was awesome, honestly. Those two aspects are where the book earned its two stars from me - the romance, and the underwater aspect. It was really unique, because the city is like a bubble underwater, at the bottom of the ocean, with humans living in it (with the exception of a few sirens). I had high hopes for this book... but it didn't deliver.

What I Did Not Like:

Okay my biggest problem started when Bay chose Above... which was pretty soon after the book started. To be completely, while I felt for Rio, I got bored. Real quick. The author spends so much time letting Rio wallow, letting the plot kind of meander along with no purpose, no twists, no bumps in the road. Bay leaves. Rio feels sorry for herself. She decides to swim. She evades Maire. La la la... that's kind of how I felt as I was reading. Not going to lie, I was in a really comfortable position on my bed while reading this book...

... And I fell asleep. Like, actually asleep, totally knocked out, unconscious and the whole nine yards.

That says something, folks. I'm on Thanksgiving vacation right now, so it's not like I've been lacking sleep. No, the problem was that forty, fifty, sixty, pages in, I was struggling. I was bored. I needed more oomph from the plot. I needed more than Maire hinting at secrets, more than a budding friendship with True, more than swim races that meant nothing to me.

Throughout the whole book, I didn't like Bay. She doesn't pop up until the end of the book, but I spent the whole book disliking her for leaving Rio, regardless of her reasons. If she had told Rio from the beginning, the whole angst thing could have been avoided. Of course, then there might not have been much of a story, but that doesn't mean that I had to like Bay. I didn't. I didn't want Rio and Bay to be reunited. I don't like Bay.

I'm also a little disappointed because while the premise of the story is very fresh and unique, the story was really cliche and over told, honestly. Evil tyrant, falling city, super powerful protagonist, save the world, last one left, blah blah blah. This book wasn't really anything special, if you took away the setting. Meh.

Overall... things were boring. And I don't do boring. I wanted more action, or at least, more interesting SOMETHING. The "plot twists" and "big reveals" weren't that exciting or shocking.

Would I Recommend It:

Hmm, naahhh. I think I've come to accept to accept the fact that Ally Condie is not an author for me - her books and I don't really agree. Unfortunate to say, but true. So I wouldn't recommend this one. Don't let the pretty cover fool you.


2 stars. I'm glad I read this one, because I had been really excited to read it... but I'm sad that I was so disappointed. Tis life!
Profile Image for  ♥ Rebecca ♥.
1,354 reviews373 followers
August 6, 2017
This review can also be found on my blog: A Match Made in Heaven

Due to this being set in Atlantis I thought that it would be a fantasy, or a historical set in the times of ancient Greece. But it is not Atlantis, it is Atlantia. It is set in a post-apocalyptic world, where the world Above is poisoned so people moved Below the water.

This is the story of Rio, who dreams of seeing above, and her journey to see her sister again, and to discover the secrets of her world and Above, and what really happened. I read this because I loved Matched so much. And although the writing style is pretty much the same, the characters did not engage me as much. And there was very little romance. Although True helped her along the way, the real struggle was for Rio to find her sister. It had nothing to do with finding a way to be with True. He was a companion and a comfort during her struggle, but not a central part of it.

The world of Atlantia was pretty unique but the story was not enough to really grab me. It focused too much on Rio's single-minded need to go Above, and not enough on the mythology and history of their world. I would have liked to learn more about the sirens and the gods and the other gifts that some people had. It could have been much more interesting if it delved deeper I think. And if it had better characters. There was really nothing special about any of them. They were pretty forgettable.

The story was concluded, and although authors can always find an excuse to come back and expand a story if they decide to, I hope this remains a standalone story. I don't feel the need to come back to this world. We could always see how Rio and Bay are doing later, and how their worlds are faring, how things have changed, but things are good enough as they are now. I believe everything will turn out for the best.

Profile Image for Suzzie.
908 reviews164 followers
March 16, 2018

I hate writing negative reviews. Especially when I really enjoyed the author’s other works, but I was expecting more out of this book. This had cute and some interesting moments but overall I was bored reading this book. I loved the Matched trilogy by Ally Condie so much but I could not get into this book and honestly I even put it down for a couple days before even picking it back up to finish it. It had some interesting parts and a plot that some people will enjoy a lot but I just did not like it that much. I love siren stories so it’s a shame.

My quick and simple overall: some people will really enjoy this one, but unfortunately I was more bored than not when reading it.
Profile Image for Max Lau • Maxxesbooktopia.
161 reviews8 followers
July 16, 2017
“Under star-dark seas and skies of gold
Live those Above and those Below
They sing and weep, both high and deep
While over and under the ocean rolls”–Atlantia, Ally Condie.

My thoughts: Introduction

Let us start off with the cover of the book. I was a little disappointed because I originally thought that this book was going to be about a tale of mermaids. But after I read the synopsis for the book, I was intrigued by the originality of the story! So, I bought this book and started reading it and it did not disappoint.

The world building for this book was great and unique! While Ally was building the world and the atmosphere around this book, she had also included the personalities of the people around the protagonist and some mythology. Some mythology such as Sirens. I found the sirens part to be shocking because I did not expect that to pop out. That was really an interesting way to mix the genres and the story together! Also, like all of you can already guess, I liked the result for this book!

I have to say that some scenes in the book actually dragged. It dragged for pages after pages, making my poor eyes teared up. Although, I did enjoy a few scenes that dragged because those scenes that I enjoyed actually made sense and I wanted them to be longer than long! But, the rest of the scenes that dragged bored me to tears. So, overall for the dragging part, I am giving it a 31/100%.

The pacing for this book was quick! Even though it took me a week to finish it because of school. This book will pick back up where you left off and you would not even forget about the story after a few busy days so.. I highly recommend you all to give this book a shot.

I really liked the relationship between Rio and her sister, Bay. I felt the love and tension between them and it actually shocked me when Bay had decided to [Spoiler removed] Rio [Spoiler removed].

Those above were mostly the things that I enjoyed about the book. Now, let us move on with the things that I disliked, shall we?

I hated the love interest in this book. It made no sense and it felt like instant love even though their love kind of progressed overtime. Usually, I would love to read about instant love if it is done right, but this book does it all wrong! I just can’t, I am sorry. It just felt unreal and flat to me.

The flashbacks in this book felt like it was forced to make the readers to understand what Rio’s mother had been through as the Minister. Some of the flashbacks in this book are not needed and some are necessary but most of them, I would say 40% of them are not needed.

Remember the things that I said about the dragging scenes earlier on? Yep, one of them was about her crying for ages. I know, she had been through a lot but crying in almost every chapters in the book? No. Please, stop. Stop..

Now, let us move on to the writing style for this book.


The writing style for this book was beautiful, gorgeous and pretty. Yes, I just used the synonyms for beautiful.. (Why did I do that?) But, what I was actually trying to say is her writing style for this book was crisp, lyrical and articulate.

Her descriptions around the protagonist, Rio was fantastic. I loved how Ally described the world around Rio, she made it sound so real and so beautiful that I wish I can visit the place one day.

The characters that she had created felt real and raw and innocent that I sincerely wish that they were my friends. Ever since I have finished the book, the characters from the book visited one of my dream and they talked to me like I am their old friend. Just, beautiful characterization!

I loved how, like I have said earlier, Ally had written about the relationship between Rio and her twin sister, Bay. It was beautiful and unique because I have not really read any books about twins other than Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell (Which I loved).

Now, let us move on to the characters section!


Rio: I did not really like her as a character in this book, to be honest. Because, number one, she cried in almost every chapter in the book and number two, she was a pretty weak character but I loved her determination to get to her sister and her pretty kick-ass attitude towards the others.

Maire: I did not trust her in the beginning of the book. Heck, I did not even like her in the beginning of the book. But, when I reached to the end of the book, I started to like her bits by bits because of her character redemption. So, yes. I liked Maire as a character now.

Bay: She was the only one that I actually loved as a character in this book. She was brave, strong and she had a purpose in life: to protect her sister! I really enjoyed reading about her.

True: I liked him. But unfortunately, I did not like the love interest between him and Rio in this book. He was a little shy, kind, protective (A little too protective, actually) and funny at times. Even though I disliked the love interest, I still liked him as a character in this book.


I am giving this book a 70%. It was great but it did not blow my mind away.

“We are not lost mermaids with seaweed hair and coins for eyes, but human girls, alive and found.”-Atlantia, Ally Condie.

This review is also posted atMaxxesbooktopia: Atlantia by Ally Condie || Book Review
Profile Image for Jo.
1,120 reviews60 followers
October 14, 2014
4.5 stars
I will warn you - this is slow to get started. It takes awhile for the world to be built and the characters to get situated, but once it does, it is an amazing world to explore. Rio is an immensely complex protagonist who really struggles with the right thing to do. But I think my favorite character of all was Maire. She is so nebulous - you don't know whether to hug her or smack her. She is a big reason this book almost got five stars from me. The rest of the book was spectacular as well. I felt the plot and motivations of the characters were really strong.

I really feel that this was a stand alone novel. It was perfect the way it ended, and I don't feel the longing to visit these characters again. Their story has found the perfect balance.

I loved the way that True treated Rio. He felt concern for her, but he never treated her like she was less than he was. He didn't agree with what she was doing, but he stepped back and respected her enough to make her own decisions. This is good writing, and I applaud Ms. Condie for creating a strong male character who treats women with respect and dignity. Too many romantic leads think they know better for their female counterparts and try to act against the wishes of their love interest. Real men or should I say True men respect women.

I read the first two books in the Matched series - liked one and not so much the other one. This book was a genuine pleasure to read, and it makes me want to eagerly read the next book she comes out with.
Profile Image for Anne Osterlund.
Author 5 books5,517 followers
September 9, 2014
Rio lives in the underwater city of Atlantia. After her mother dies, she forfeits her dream--the chance to live Above--in order fulfill her promise to stay below with her sister, Bay. But when Bay turns the tables on Rio and snatches their family’s only spot on a transport to the world Above, Rio is left in Atlantia. Alone. Determined to unravel her sister’s motive and to challenge all the laws of Atlantia in order to see Bay once again. Above.

Oh, I really enjoyed this novel! The underwater world--combined with details likely to appeal to any fan of The Little Mermaid--grabbed my interest right from the start, but I also enjoyed the fact that book was a complete story. (It’s been quite a while since I read a strong standalone sci-fi novel). Rio’s Aunt Maire, the “sea witch,” was unpredictable and intriguing, and I loved the idea of the Deepmarket and the illegal sea races.
Profile Image for Kate Willis.
Author 20 books501 followers
May 7, 2019
This is my fifth book by Ally Condie.

First off, she alllwwwwaaayys scores the most beautiful book covers. Second, whoever decided the inside flaps should be that exact shade of green has my undying respect and a pan of brownies.

I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from this book. I’d heard a rumor that it was exactly like Matched except bland, and since I loved Matched, I wasn’t too thrilled about that idea.

I looooved the worldbuilding. The gondolas, the trees, the market… It was properly dystopian--sterile with a quirky vibrancy that people always bring to a culture. It was also really interesting to piece together just exactly what was going on…

Y’all, this was not a romance. NOT A ROMANCE. Which was really cool. Instead, I’d call it more of a “star-crossed sisters” story, if there even is such a thing. There was much to be found in this story about family and giving of yourself for what you love.

Rio was a cool heroine. While I wasn’t a fan of her selfishness and inherent suspicion (though I was with her on Maire!), her determination and fierce love for her family were awesomely admirable. Oceana and Bay were great as well. Something I really appreciated was that this book was able to have plenty of strong female characters (and I mean more than just physical strength) without turning all male characters into doormats like in some books I’ve read. *tries not to think about Princess Academy 3* *fails* True was a great character with so much loyalty and strength in his heart and that super awesome skill of his… I might like him. Just a little bit. :D <3 He and Rio were a good team. ;)

My worry about it being a bland Matched remix was definitely laid to rest. I was iffy on the siren’s manipulative powers, but it was presented as exactly as dangerous and tempting as it really would be. And I liked where Rio ended up with it. ;) The other thing I was uncomfortable with was the false religion, though it was sometimes pointed out as being invented which was cool.

Just a note, there were mentions of murders, mass drownings, and a mass shooting though none were described in detail. Also, there was some very sweet teenage kissing.

Best quotes: They sang peace to us. They reminded us what laughter sounded like. They were beautiful and joyful.

I have eyes for him, and so I see.

Altogether, this was a great, unique read. :D
Profile Image for MeggieBree.
246 reviews21 followers
October 21, 2014
I've read a lot of dystopian novels, and a lot of them follow a similar story line. This one was different, and I truly appreciate that! I'm also a sucker for a story about sisters, and enjoyed that aspect of it as well. I once again wish for the half-star option, because I would have given this book a solid 3.5 stars.

The world has been divided between Above - where the air was so polluted that people could no longer survive for long - and Below - where the people have been blessed with long and healthy lives. Rio, the main character, lives in Atlantia, an underwater city in the Below, and has long dreamed of experiencing what it would be like to walk Above, to feel real dirt between her fingers, to feel the sun on her face and the wind in her hair. Her twin sister, Bay, has always known that she wanted to stay underwater in Atlantia, the city she loves.

When the annual ceremony celebrating the divide between Above and Below gives them the choice to either stay in Atlantia, or go Above arrives, Bay makes a choice that leaves Rio stunned - and alone.

I had a lot of questions about how the world came to split, and why her sister would leave her and I felt like all of my questions were adequately answered in the end, which is always a good thing :)

I really enjoyed Ally Condie's writing. Her world-building and character development were fantastic. Matched has long been on my to-read list, and I'm thinking I'll be getting to it sooner rather than later! I will definitely be recommending her writing to the kids at school here as well.

I received an advanced copy of this book from Penguin, which in no way influenced my review. Thanks Penguin!

Profile Image for Tez.
840 reviews218 followers
March 19, 2015
My suspension of disbelief can only be so strong for so long before it collapses. Atlantia is a mind-boggler. To the author's credit, Ally Condie does try to describe the actual world-building: the city of Atlantia is underwater, inside giant, connected "bubbles". But I can't properly imagine the engineering and logistics required to build a city and move it into these "bubbles", or bring the materials INTO the bubbles, and build them inside. What are these bubbles made of, and how are they connected?

Then there's the matter of the "floodgates": you go into the empty room, lie down the corpse, and then vacate. There's some button or lever to use, and the room floods with water. The corpse rises, and...exits? Then somehow the water is drained, so the room is empty again. I CANNOT FIGURE THIS OUT. I can kind of picture it, but can't understand the structure and drainage.

The book gets better, though, or at least more interesting. I gave up trying to understand, and the story picks up from thereon. There are mysteries to solve: why did the narrator's sister choose to live Above, and who killed their mother? When revealed, the answers are anti-climactic, but at least the second half of the book is much better than the first.

Rio Conwy is an alright heroine, working towards her goal by breaking it down into components. While her swimming efforts are fabulous, a little knowledge of lungs and pressure would have cut out that plotline altogether. Albeit, her training isn't for nothing in the end, though it does come across as a bit of a waste.
Profile Image for мσвιηα.
105 reviews
August 27, 2022
تموم شدنتو باور نمیکنم:)
ریو و ترو تا ابد تو قلب من یه گوشه رو برای خودشون اشغال کردن:)))
کاش میشد تموم نمیشدی🥺
پ.ن: چون بارها از این ریویو من سواستفاده شده
باید بگم توقع یه کتاب عالی نداشته باشید
هیچ‌وقت هم با معرفی‌های کتابفروش‌ها کتاب نخرید:)
پایان این کتابم اگه احساساتی هستید دوست خواهید داشت اگر منطق براتون اولویته پایانشو دوست نخواهید داشت.
دقیقا جمله(کاش می‌شد تموم نمی‌شدی) برای همین نوشته شده😂چون جداً پایان خوب نبود در حد کل کتاب.
من پنج‌ستاره دادم چون خودم ازش لذت بردم
192 reviews98 followers
June 22, 2015
In any case, this wasn't an unbearable and the testimony is the fact that I finished it pretty quick. While it made me turn the pages, there was nothing remarkable about anything that happens in this book. Everything was just..there. When the action was supposedly at its highest peak, I was wondering when the action would come only to realize that oh, this is the action sequence.

I loved how the book started, it made me feel like I was going to experience something wonderfully refreshing. As it turns out, that's pretty much there is to it. Just expectations that turned into disappointment and potential that went wasted.

The supernatural aspect this book primarily promises was what I truly went in for. Sure, mermaids aren't the most supernaturally amusing creatures out there but I couldn't see the harm in giving them a chance. A bummer, for the most part since mermaids are not even part of the equation. We have sirens who are far from being astounding. They were just human - different, maybe - but still human which I understand is one of the main concepts behind the story but I just didn't feel it. I couldn't connect.

The underwater city of Atlantia still held oodles of potential and I was ready to sink my teeth into the delicious world. Karma is a real bitch, because (surprise!) there was nothing to sink my teeth into. We know Atlantia is an underwater city. It is in the Below. And it's very beautiful. Yay us. Oh, the people are human too. And did I say it's an underwater city that is very beautiful? And that, my friends, is a basic summary of the whole world building. These facts were repeated over and over again, sometimes disguised in different forms. This kept the story going, but the world-building, obviously, lacked.

Plot-wise there was nothing much either. Things happened, the story progressed but it didn't go above or below, you know? It was kept to a monotone. When an action sequence was happening, the excitement and the sense of anticipation was not there. When something romantic was happening, there were no tiny hearts with smiley faces floating about. Per se, the plot did progress at a nice pace. But all I felt was indifference because the writing lacked a tone. (Notice a pattern here?)

Basically, it was boring.

Rio, apart from having a horribly weird name, was equally boring.I wonder if the writing felt monotone simply because it was coming from Rio's perspective. She had loads of secrets that weren't even secrets, and asked so many questions, I wonder why no one told her to sit in a corner and be silent for a change. Imagine pages, and pages of paragraphs answering Rio's endless questions. A nightmare, I say.

For the most part, the book is based on Rio trying to get to her sister, Bay who left for the Above unexpectedly, breaking Rio's heart. One reason I got to the end was to know why she left. Well..there is a reason, of course. But I didn't buy it but no spoilers, so that's that.

As for the romance, it was as boring as the rest of the book. Rio meets a guy with an equally horrible name (True Beck), and they hit it off faster than you could tell them to stop it.

It was annoying and felt like it was dragged in just for the sake of it. But since all I felt towards this book was indifference it didn't affect me as much.

I think it's so much better to finish a book feeling something towards it, no matter it is hate or love. But sadly, this is a book I neither love nor hate.

Am I going to re-read this, ever? No.
Do I recommend this so you'll enjoy it? No.
Do I recommend this so we can rant together (if you hate it)? Yes.
Profile Image for Jeann (Happy Indulgence) .
1,006 reviews3,585 followers
November 17, 2014
This review appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!

Don’t get Atlantia, the underwater city mixed up with Atlantis, because they have absolutely nothing in common except for being underwater. I thought Atlantia was going to be rich in culture and history and contain many historic buildings, but what we got instead was a bare bones story about bats and sirens.

Somehow the book had a weird dystopian feel about it, referring to the city “Above” and “Below” which is where Atlantia is. For some reasons not explained well, these people don’t like each other and they the people above want to kill all the Sirens. There’s an oddly religious angle here about the people from Above worshipping mermaids and sirens which are the people Below, and the people Below worshipping gargoyle statues and bats from above. The world building was pretty much confusing and didn’t make any sense.

I have no idea how Sirens came about either, and it just so happens that Rio is one of them. Rio is as bland as the characters come though, as she uses this flat, monotone voice with people so they don’t find out she is a siren, where she control people to do her bidding. I found her character to be really annoying and bland. The whole book features her questioning every single thing she sees or hears, and she really, really likes to ask questions when being told something important. Pages of dialogue will bounce back and forth between her questions and people answering them.

While I did like the concept of Sirens being explored, there wasn’t enough depth or character building here to hold my interest. I had so many questions that went unanswered, like how can the people in Atlantia breathe underwater? Why does Rio so easily be able to tell one of the key secrets of her Ministers when the whole population cannot? Why is Rio’s aunt continuing to help someone who killed her own sister?

There is something about the way the book is written, with blunt, short sentences and lots of repetition used that made it stunted and frustrating to read. Perhaps it’s just the author’s writing style that isn’t for me, but I remember enjoying Matched when I read it a few years ago, but much has probably changed since I started book blogging.

Atlantia just wasn’t the book for me. While it did contain an important focus on family and an interesting concept about Sirens in an underwater world, there just wasn’t enough depth, world building or character building to hold my interest. It is a standalone though, so at least there’s that.

I received a review copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Fari .
375 reviews73 followers
January 7, 2015
Review can be found here @ My Little Corner for Books

I have such mixed feeling about this one, it’s not even funny. *sigh* Okay, so, I decided to give Ally Condie a second chance. I had tried her Matched trilogy before and… that experience did not end well. Like, at all. I believe I gave Matched 3 stars but Crossed was so boring and horrible, I just couldn’t do it. I gave up somewhere close to the part where they were walking across some mountains! (Because that narrows it down SO much! *my eyeballs feel like they’re going to roll away from me and this just sounds weird*) *sigh* Bad choices come easily to me.

This review TRIES to look organized but is messed up like no other. Trust me. >.<

The Plot

The plot was just boring. I’m not going to summarize cuz I suck at that. Go read the Goodreads synopsis, you can read, unlike what Ally Condie seems to think.

Honestly, throughout the whole book, I was just wondering why the hell does Above (which means above the sea, as in land) still provide for Below (which legit means below, as in sea)? I think that’s just stupid. Look at the world around you, there are wars going on at many different places and the powerful countries, the ones with upper hand, don’t always jump in. Just assuming that Above will forever provide for you is just stupid. Do you want to know what they’re mantra type of thing is?
“What are the gifts given to we who live Below?”
“Long life, health, strength and happiness.”
“What is the curs if those who live above?”
“Short life, illness, weakness and misery.”
“Is this fair?”
“It is fair. It is as the gods decreed at the time of the divide. Some have to stay Above so that humanity may survive Below.”

Ya… And the fact that Above apparently still provides for them and all that shit. I just… This is delusional, thinking that the Above would possibly do all that hard work for those in Atlantia who are nothing but a burden. Countries don’t even do that unless they’ve got something to gain! It has to be a trade, not just endless giving! *rolls eyes* Okay, BEFORE, a LONG LONG TIME AGO, at the time of the Divide, there were loved ones Below and Above provided for them because they loved them. Okay, fine but those loved ones are bloody dead now! And then, apparently, Above did all they did for the mines the Below could provide. Well, shit. Okay. But seriously, all that for mines?
When they find out that the Above don’t give a flying fuck about them, Rio is just SO SHOCKED! How naïve can you be? Do you really think that they would just carry your burden when they are “cursed” with all that? Stupidity, I tell you. And the fact that they just expect the Above to provide them with supplies, food and everything just bugs me and boggles my mind! Also, another thing, the people Below don’t give a shit about people above, but somehow, they expect the Above to love and provide for them… forever? The citizens of Atlantia aren’t very smart, you see.

I’m still confused as to how long this review might be.

The Characters

I was indifferent to most of the characters. Rio was okay, I guess. The only problem’s that I kept forgetting what her name was… :/ Well, then. She didn’t annoy me as much as expected but I can’t say I liked her either. Oh, by the way, did I mention that she’s not actually a mermaid? That none of them are freaking mermaids? What. The. Fuck?! That is not how it was supposed to happen!! GRR! They live under-freaking-water, for goodness’ sakes. (Though apparently in little dome-like bubble cities cuz apparently they can’t breathe underwater, either, because pretty much throughout the whole book, the sentence that’s repeated over and over is that “We’re humans, too”. Yes, I am reading a human book when I thought it’d be either Fantasy or Paranormal with mermaids or some such thing. Alrighty. Now, why did I think this book might include some cool feautres??) BUT, wait for the twist, wait for it, wait for it, she’s a siren! *gasp, y’all!* She’s not a mermaid, believes that they’re all humans, but is a siren. “Sirens are humans, too.” Boorrrrrrrrrrrriiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnnnnnngggggggggggg…��…….. Plus, she has to hide that voice of hers. I understand it had to be like that cuz of the plot but seriously, couldn’t she think of a more interesting plot where this girl can use her “actual voice” or “real voice”? What about if, as in this book, she hated living Below, wanted to go Above but when she couldn’t she felt like she was breaking. Okay, but unlike the book, what if she goes crazy, decides she wanted to rule her wittle kingdom and started using her siren voice for evil and commanding everyone in Atlantia and then everyone fears her and we get a darker, hopefully more interesting, book. I’d read that. *shrugs*

True was alright, I guess. He can do cool things with metal.

We hardly get to see Bay. (What the fuck is up with these names? True? Bay? Rio? Oceana (Bay and Rio’s mother)?

I think I was intriguied by Maira the most. I liked her at the beginning though,

I needed a villain that’s actually evil and feared. Who wants an evil character WHO NOBODY KNOWS IS EVIL and never finds out? I wanted an evil character who actually tries to spoil people’s plans and make people DESEPERATE and tries to KILL THEM ALL!

The Writing

I couldn’t really feel Rio’s desperation and her breaking! I saw it but didn’t really feel it. I didn’t understand Rio’s need to go Above. Yes, she wanted to breathe the air and look at trees and stuff but seriously, that’s not good enough for me. I want to go to a LOT of places, I want to see a LOT of things but that doesn’t mean that I get weaker and more desperate. Well, I do understand the fact that she misses her sister but she SAYS that. I only remember it when she tells someone. Seriously, SHOW not Tell! D:

Also, I don’t think she understood that she was writing for a teen audience, not second graders!

Okay, after reading this, I understand why Fantasy or Sci-Fi novels aren’t usually stand alones! Especially not ones that are under 300 pages!

Also, I may believe in second chances but third chances aren’t something that come easily to me... Bad choices do, so we’ll see.

PS This is 2 and a half pages on Word. Why do I waste my time on these kinds of things?

Edit: I just realized at the very beginning, I said that I have very mixed feelings about this book but that's like so not true! Haha, I hate this book.
Profile Image for Steffi.
2,933 reviews166 followers
October 27, 2015
25/10 Völlig sinnbefreite Geschichte o.O

2 Tage später frage ich mich immer noch, was für einen Quatsch ich hier eigentlich gelesen habe. Also muss ich doch nochmal ein paar Worte loswerden.

Der Beginn war wirklich interessant und spannend. Eine Stadt unter dem Meer, weil die Erde nicht mehr komplett bewohnbar und Jugendliche, die vor der Entscheidung stehen, ob sie in Atlantia bleiben wollen oder ob sie für Atlantia auf der Erdoberfläche arbeiten wollen. Wie gesagt, klingt alles interessant und spannend.

Danach passiert einfach nichts mehr. Die Handlung dümpelt einfach nur vor sich hin. Es gibt keine Spannung, keine interessanten Wendungen...es passiert einfach überhaupt nichts.
Dazu kommt dann noch das nicht erwartete Fantasy-Element: es gibt Sirenen. Ok, schön und gut, kann ja interessant werden. Das wurde es leider nicht, sonder wurde einfach ohne Sinn und Verstand in die Geschichte reingequetscht. Wieso, warum und weshalb wurde natürlich nicht erklärt.

Das Buch war alles in allem völlig verschwendete Lesezeit. Nachdem mir bereits Matched von der gleichen Autorin nicht gefallen hat, ist meine Beziehung mit Ally Condie hiermit beendet.
Profile Image for Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids.
1,952 reviews204 followers
October 27, 2014
I love it when I'm excepting one thing with a book, and get something completely different. Ally Condie treated me to something I was not excepting. When I first read that Atlantia had Sirens, I, for whatever reason, thought mermaids. For the record, there are NO mermaids in this book. What this book has, however is an unpredictable plot line, a pretty cool world, some great characters, a well paced romance, and a few twists. Did I mention there's an UNDER SEA WORLD?

Read my FULL review here on Mundie Moms http://mundiemoms.blogspot.com/2014/1...
Profile Image for Meli  .
1,054 reviews187 followers
December 13, 2021
Rio kann es nicht fassen: Immer war sie es, die Atlantia verlassen und das Oben sehen, doch ihre Zwillingsschwester Bay nahm ihr das Versprechen ab, sie nicht zu verlassen - nur um sich selbst fürs Oben zu entscheiden!
Warum hat Bay das getan? Rio kann das nicht verstehen. Nun ist sie ganz alleine, denn Bay war alles, was sie noch hatte. Auf der Suche nach einer Erklärung und nach einem Weg, der sie wieder mit ihrer Schwester vereint, stößt Rio auf viele Geheimnisse, die seit Jahren gehütet werden oder längst in Vergessenheit geraten sind ...

fand ich eigentlich recht sympathisch. Seit Jahren möchte sie an die Oberfläche, aber jetzt verliert sie alles, was ihr lieb ist. Ihre Mutter, die ehemalige Hohepriesterin, ist verstorben und seitdem hatten sie und ihre Schwester Bay es nicht immer leicht in Atlantia. Es fällt Rio schwer, ihre magische Sirenenstimme zu verbergen, die sie zu einer wertvollen Waffe in den Händen des Rates von Atlantia machen würde. Nun ist sie plötzlich alleine und darum zeigt man schon Mitgefühl und mehr Verständnis für ihre Taten. Oft fand ich ihre Aktionen aber auch nicht ganz durchdacht, obwohl man sie als recht schlaue Person dargestellt hat. In diesem Buch wurden öfter mal wichtige Details erwähnt, die die Charaktere aber nicht allzu ernst nahmen.

Nun ist da ihre Tante Maire, die Rio eigentlich kaum kennt, aber nun ist sie das einzige Familienmitglied, das sie in Atlantia noch hat. Noch dazu kennt Maire Rios Geheimnis und ist außerdem selbst eine Sirene. Als sie zum ersten Mal erwähnt wurde, war mir klar, dass sie eine wichtige Rolle spielen muss. Ich wusste aber lange nicht, was ich von ihr halten soll. Will sie Rio helfen oder sie manipulieren? Es war einfach unklar, was genau ihre Motive sind, darum war es auch schwer, ihr zu vertrauen. Dass sie immer eher kühl und berechnend wirkt, hilft nicht.

Handlung und Schreibstil

Ist das jetzt eine Fantasy-Dystopie? So würde ich das Buch nennen. Die Menschen sind wegen der verschmutzten Luft an einen anderen Ort geflohen, nämlich in Glaskuppeln, die tief im Meer liegen. Dieser Ort, Rios Heimat, heißt Atlantia, und dort geschahen dann zwei Wunder, eins weniger magisch, das andere, die Sirenen, doch überaus magisch.
Ich fand die ganze Welt und ihre Eigenarten schon ziemlich interessant, aber einige Details, vor allem die Sirenen betreffend, konnten mich nicht ganz überzeugen.

Ich habe etwas ganz anderes erwartet, obwohl der Klappentext ja schon recht allgemein gehalten ist. Ich dachte aber, dass die beiden Schwestern gewaltsam getrennt werden und außerdem habe ich auch erwartet, dass die Geschichte mindestens auch noch aus Bays Perspektive im Oben erzählt wird. Daher hatte ich manchmal das Gefühl, das mir total viel entgeht und ich hab mich oft geärgert, wie wenige Informationen man doch hat.
Andere Sachen fand ich dann wieder total offensichtlich und manchmal war mir die Handlung viel zu langsam und daher hat es sich für mich etwas gezogen, obwohl ich das Buch doch relativ schnell durchhatte. Ich hatte außerdem den Eindruck, dass manche wichtige Punkte immer wieder angesprochen waren, ich verstand sie, aber die Charaktere wohl nicht, also bespricht man sie kurz darauf nochmal. Ich konnte der Handlung also sehr gut folgen, aber es war schon fast zu viel.


"Atlantia" hat mich ganz gut unterhalten, richtig überzeugen konnte es mich aber nicht. Obwohl ich die Welt wirklich interessant fand, gefielen mir das Tempo und teilweise auch die Handlung nicht immer.
Profile Image for Jay.
514 reviews369 followers
December 16, 2014
Atlantia.. oh Atlantia.. I honestly didn't have high hopes because one of my book kryptonite is mermaids/sirens.. however I thought this would be different with the sci fi/dystopian setting. Unfortunetly Atlantia didn't have a captivating and strong plot.. half the time I was bored out of my mind.

We have Rio, living in Atlantia, a constructed underworld city. At the age of 16, each person is allowed to choose between staying in Atlantia or going to the above. Rio always wanted to go to the above but when her mother passed away, she decided to stay with her twin. Lo and behold, after Rio, during the ceremony, chooses to stay below, her sister is asked the same question and she chooses the above. Rio feels betrayed, confused, hurt, and all alone.. because she has a big secret, and that is her being a Siren. Sirens are shunned and controlled. The whole book is spent on Rio trying to figure out why her sister went to the above, whether her mom was murdered, and trying to keep her secret hidden. Also, a big portion of that time is spent on her performing in a swimming pool with automated fish and upping the risk to get betters to bet more money so she can plan her escape to the above sooner. This all seems so intermediate.. the whole time I was looking for the big plot but it was nowhere to be found.

The romance was nondescript. Typical YA friends one page, "i love yous" being thrown out in the second. I've turned immune towards these romances.. before I would really get annoyed but now I just ignore and move on. I really wasn't a fan of anyone or invested in anyone's wellbeing or outcomes. It is sad when you read a book but come out of it with a lack of love towards anything in it. I didn't hate the book, but I didn't like it either. I don't know if it is the plot or just the whole underwater concept that kept me from enjoying the book. I gave it a try because I was sent an unsolicited copy. I own Ally Condie's Matched and Crossed and I will give those a try because I had no problem with her writing. I would recommend Atlantia to fans of the underwater world and mermaid/siren books like Of Poseidon.
Profile Image for Irene Rauch.
119 reviews10 followers
March 23, 2017
Eine Welt unter einer Kuppel tief unten im Meer... Diese Welt konnte mich echt begeistern! Die Geschichte und die Charaktere waren echt toll! Wer allerdings ein actionreiches Abenteuer sucht, ist hier an der falschen Adresse. Trotzdem eine schöne Geschichte! :)
Profile Image for Katharina | katharia.
122 reviews317 followers
September 23, 2017
Nachdem ich ein halbes Jahr an diesem Buch gelesen habe, hab ich es endlich beendet. Leider hat mir das Buch nicht gefallen, obwohl ich ja ein ziemlicher Fan der Cassia & Ky Reihe war. Manchmal waren Handlungen einfach widersprüchlich oder unlogisch. Die Welt von Atlantia war zwar an sich ganz cool, manchmal jedoch sehr schwer vorzustellen. Dennoch hat es mir eventuell einfach nicht gefallen, weil es nicht mein liebstes Genre ist.
Von mir gibt es keine Leseempfehlung.
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