Alessia in Atlantis

The Forbidden Vial

Children - Fantasy/Sci-Fi
322 Pages
Reviewed on 01/31/2021
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Author Biography

Nathalie Laine is a children's fantasy author. She lives a safe distance away from the ocean, in Paris, France, where she works in marketing.

She enjoys: poking her finger into the mini whirlpools that form above bath drains, randomly understanding words in a language she doesn’t know, wrongly guessing the double-agent in cold war spy stories, sharing a Turkish meal of “Lion’s milk”, fish and turnip juice with her fiancé and friends, and getting spurned by grumpy cats.

She may have snuck some of the above into her novel, Alessia in Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial.

She is a graduate of the London School of Economics (BSc Management 2010).

    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne-Marie Reynolds for Readers' Favorite

Alessia in Atlantis by Nathalie Laine tells the story of The Forbidden Vial. Alessia is 12 years old and it isn’t unheard of for her to lose control and kick off at school. When a giant frog monster attacks her, she is plunged deep beneath the water to Atlantis. There she learns that her father, lost long ago, may have come from there and Alessia is determined to find out all she can. Staying in Atlantis, she joins the Atlantide School: The Octopus’s Garden. The Atlantide emperor has put a spanner in the works though. Nobody is allowed to ask about any missing people and Alessia is struggling to find out what she needs to know. Joining forces with her school friends, Alessia is reduced to stealing the evidence she needs to start her on her journey of discovery. Trouble is never far away though and somebody knows who Alessia is and who her father is – they will stop at nothing to stop her, even killing her.

Alessia in Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial by Nathalie Laine is a wonderful story, full of suspense and adventure. It pulses with action right from the start in a unique tale with a magical setting and a fun plot with lots of twists and turns. The characters are wonderfully quirky and well-developed; it may be a magical story but the characters have real characteristics and flaws and are easy to relate to. This is a page-turner, a book you won’t want to put down as every chapter ends leaving you hanging, wanting more. It is perfectly suited to the audience it was written for and kids are going to love this story.

Michelle Stanley

Alessia in Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial is a children’s science fiction tale by Nathalie Laine. Determined to know more about her deceased parents, twelve-year-old Alessia transfers to a boarding school in South West Scotland, near her mother’s village. While having another embarrassing, emotional outburst, Alessia escapes to the shore, but is attacked by a frog man. She manages to escape by jabbing it with the treasured fork her father left her. While exploring, Alessia sits in a boat and hears strange chanting. She falls overboard and finds herself in Atlantis, where a moon-faced man named Felthor becomes her guardian. Having learned her father came from Atlantis, Alessia continues her education at Octopus Gardens. She makes friends but still has outbursts which occur at peculiar times. Many creatures are reluctant to talk about her father, making her more curious. Alessia is oblivious of the powers she inherited, and the shocking reason she was lured to the lost city of Atlantis.

Enter the world of fantasy with this fast-paced story about Alessia, a headstrong girl who feels empathy when others are sad, happy or upset. Atlantis is described so vividly that you can actually believe you’re there. It’s a city that has a bit of realism with the many species who live there, and the political and social issues that “landfarers” like us experience. The characters are unique in a beautifully described underwater setting. I love the cover artwork and the imaginative writing of Nathalie Laine. Learn about Nereids, Nethusia, and the awesome Octopus Garden School where the lessons are more interesting to me. Alessia in Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial is a fantasy adventure that should be read.

Tiffany Ferrell

The only thing Alessia Cogner had that belonged to her father was a strange trident fork with no name. Her mother died when she was a baby and her stepfather raised her. Enrolled at a Scottish boarding school while her stepfather went to work in Germany, Alessia chose this particular school because it was near her mother's hometown of Inverness. A very sensitive person, she had a strange ability that allowed her to feel and mirror what people around her felt. When Alessia goes in search of her mother's family, an accident occurs and she capsizes the small boat she had been using. Dragged to the bottom of the sea, the girl surfaces in a world that is very different from her own. She finds out that she is in Atlantis, and that she belongs there...

Alessia In Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial was a fun and fascinating read. I really liked and could relate to the main character Alessia and found her backstory both interesting and appealing. I really enjoyed Nathalie Laine’s take on Atlantis and how it survived underwater for so many centuries. The mystery of who Alessia’s parents were was intriguing, making it very easy to follow along and to keep readers' interest. It’s a simple story but jam-packed full of adventure with characters that are fun to read and a mystery factor that keeps the reader on their toes till the end. Overall, I think Nathalie Laine has done a wonderful job bringing Alessia and the people of Atlantis to life and I cannot wait to read what other works she has written.

K.C. Finn

Alessia in Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial is a work of fiction in the mythology, action and adventure, and fantasy sub-genres, and was penned by author Nathalie Laine. Written for middle grade and young adult reading audiences, this charming and immersive adventure story follows the exploits of twelve-year-old Alessia. Having been raised with a sense that she was always unusual, Alessia finally begins a process of true self-discovery when she is attacked and plunged deep into the lost realm of Atlantis. She decides to enroll in the underwater school to investigate her origins and the mystery of her long lost father, but plenty of obstacles must be overcome on this grand and exciting adventure.

Author Nathalie Laine has crafted a work that perfectly balances everything that one could want in an immersive fantasy adventure novel for young readers to dive into headfirst. One of the things which I particularly enjoyed about this work was how affable, likable, and realistic Alessia was as a central hero to the tale. I felt instantly connected to her, enjoyed her quirky dialogue and emotive narrative presentation, and I could really feel the peril as she took on the many exciting challenges that she was faced with. The atmosphere of the work was also beautifully described to make it feel like a cinematic blockbuster. Overall, I would highly recommend Alessia in Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial as a superb adventure that will be sure to entertain children (and the young at heart) for its accomplished storytelling, charming characters, and an intriguing mystery plot.

Tammy Ruggles

Alessia in Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial by Nathalie Laine is an immensely entertaining children's fantasy/sci-fi novel. Alessia is twelve years old, but she isn't the perfect prim-and-proper type. In fact, she can cause quite a stir at school with her emotional nature. The perfect personality to end up being the victim of a giant frog attack that lands her in Atlantis, a world beneath the sea. While she's there, she finds out that her long-absent father might be from there, and decides to get to the bottom of it. The school she attends in Atlantis is called Atlantide: The Octopus’s Garden. But her quest is harder than she thought because the emperor, who is quite dictatorial, won't allow inquiries into missing persons. Her new school friends want to help her, but obstacles get in their way, like a teacher who is grouchy, some unfriendly blue people called the Minch, and merfolk. But someone wants her dead because of her father, and this raises the stakes to a life-and-death level.

The plot and the characters that populate it, especially Alessia, play so well to the imagination. The main character isn't your average wallflower. She has spunk and heart and perceives herself to be overly sensitive. She is often misunderstood and chastised for her emotionality. She is the perfect person to be cast into a different world, interacting with strange characters and settings. Readers will get terrifically lost in the world of Atlantis. Laine's world-building skills are stellar, and you are with Alessia from the first page. Young audiences will relate to the realistic emotions and Alessia's personal journey, but will also be highly entertained by the secrecy and mysterious aspects of the story. Kids will connect with the way she tries to navigate her feelings and situations. Anyone who has ever wanted to have friends and fit in will relate to Alessia. The writing is captivating, the pacing just right, and you'll be wanting more at the book's close. Alessia in Atlantis: The Forbidden Vial by Nathalie Laine is a multi-layered treasure for children and children at heart.