Book Review: Storm Front Over Atlantis
Reviewed by Madeline Barbush
An epic tale of fantasy and family
Storm Front Over Atlantis, the first book in the Olympian Legacy series, tells the story of seventeen-year-old Victoria Hartley coming into her powers as a young woman. Author E.W. Roberts offers up an audacious epic and proves he is undaunted by the challenge of bold storytelling.
Roberts crosses between two worlds, the mortal and immortal, impressively intertwining them. It feels like each of the characters has one foot in and one foot out of these worlds, a tone of magical realism carrying throughout.
The title of the series, Olympian Legacy, alludes to our main character. Vic Hartley has the potential to be the heir to Atlantis. The Olympian gods know that her late mother, Anastasia Hartley, had power equal to the very first of them. Now, they want to know if these powers were passed down to her daughter.
Vic’s hometown of Great Oak, Florida, once an unassuming quiet town, is plunged into chaos when the gods seek out Vic and want to test her powers. After one of them tries to kill Vic with a golden liquid, the true nature of her power is exposed. From then on Vic is left to contend with it all: the ancients might be on her side, but her enemies and their mission to take her out could be stronger.
Although the pressure to understand her powers is great, and chaos and death overwhelms her town, the desire to find out who she is as a sister, daughter, and young woman could very well be the thing that puts her over the edge.
Despite its dealings with other realms and supernatural beings, Roberts’ story is one that many young adults, and even full-grown adults. It feels like everyone wants a part of Vic. To compound that, Vic can “reach out” with her mind and feel all of the emotions of everyone around her. She is pulled in every direction.
Roberts thrusts us into the pain and frustration of feeling like everything is unraveling before us: The need to protect her sister who is much weaker than her, the unwanted attention and rumors started by peers, the discovery of who she is and how she will come into it. Roberts does an awesome job of humanizing his otherworldly characters, as well as his mortal ones.
Vic arduously struggles through the process of learning who she is and where she has come from. There are many moments when she reminds me of a female Hercules, and I love that Roberts takes advantage of her clumsy training to bring humor and lightheartedness to an otherwise heavy situation.
I’d recommend Storm Front Over Atlantis to anyone who enjoys a fantasy story with meaningful relationships that will expand your imagination as well as your idea of the classic descendant-of-the-gods-story. I am a sucker for weird things happening in small towns, and it’s safe to say that Storm Front Over Atlantis embraces it all from the freaky to the funny.