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The Fall of Atlantis by Marion Zimmer Bradley: A Book Review

The Fall of Atlantis
Author: Marion Zimmer Bradley
Genre: Historical Fiction, Fantasy
Publisher: Baen
Release Date: 1987
Pages: 512
Source: Personal Collection 

Synopsis: A wounded Atlantean prince...a deadly battle between Dark and Light...and the sisters Deoris and Domaris, whose lives are changed utterly by the magic involving them. These are the elements of The Fall of Atlantis, Marion Zimmer Bradley's epic fantasy about that ancient and legendary realm.

     On one side stand the Priests of the White Robe, guardians of powerful natural forces which could threaten the world if misused. Ranged against them are the Black Robes, sorcerers who secretly practice their arts in the labyrinthine caves beneath the very Temple of Light. Caught between are Domaris and Deoris, daughters of the arch-priest Talkannon, trapped in a web of deadly sorcery--the same forbidden sorcery that could bring about the fall of Atlantis. 

     My Review: The Fall of Atlantis is the first in a prequel series that leads up to The Mists of Avalon. It tells the tale of two sisters who are priestesses in a Temple of Light. Domaris, who is the elder sister, is drawn to Light. However, Deoris is drawn to Darkness. The choices that these two girls make leads to the fall of Atlantis.

     Domaris was my favorite character in the novel. I love how she was protective and caring towards those she loved. She is very wise and thoughtful. I also loved that she is a very loyal character. Thus, I admired her striving to protect her sister who is drawn to the darkness. She is willing to give her life for hers which I find very compelling. Thus, I admired Domaris’s strength and love.

     Deoris was also a likable character. Her arc is both fascinating and strange. She is often rebellious and jealous. Deoris is also the type who is willing to do anything for love. Even though Deoris is drawn to the Darkness, I hoped that she would turn away from it. Thus, I was eager to learn her ending.

     Overall, this novel is about sisterhood, love, and motherhood. The characters, including the villain, were all fascinating and complex characters. The world-building is very intricate and feels realistic. Initially, I was disappointed that the setting was not on Atlantis until the end. It was not until the end that I realized why the majority of the book was not set in Atlantis. Afterwards, it made sense, and I found the wait to be worth it. Thus, The Fall of Atlantis was a beautifully written and well-crafted novel. I look forward to reading the other novels in the Avalon series. I can’t wait to read Ancestors of Avalon next because I would like to know what happens to the remaining characters in the Fall of Atlantis. I recommend this novel for fans of Greek mythology! The novel is perfect for those who love Madeline Miller, Amalia Carosella, and Kerry Greenwood!

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars


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