The Atlas Six
The Alexandrian Society, caretakers of lost knowledge from the greatest civilizations of antiquity, are the foremost secret society of magical academicians in the world. Those who earn a place among the Alexandrians will secure a life of wealth, power, and prestige beyond their wildest dreams, and each decade, only the six most uniquely talented magicians are selected to be considered for initiation. Enter the latest round of six: Libby Rhodes and Nico de Varona, unwilling halves of an unfathomable whole, who exert uncanny control over every element of physicality. Reina Mori, a naturalist, who can intuit the language of life itself. Parisa Kamali, a telepath who can traverse the depths of the subconscious, navigating worlds inside the human mind. Callum Nova, an empath easily mistaken for a manipulative illusionist, who can influence the intimate workings of a person's inner self. Finally, there is Tristan Caine, who can see through illusions to a new structure of reality--an ability so rare that neither he nor his peers can fully grasp its implications. When the candidates are recruited by the mysterious Atlas Blakely, they are told they will have one year to qualify for initiation, during which time they will be permitted preliminary access to the Society's archives and judged based on their contributions to various subjects of impossibility: time and space, luck and thought, life and death. Five, they are told, will be initiated. One will be eliminated. The six potential initiates will fight to survive the next year of their lives, and if they can prove themselves to be the best among their rivals, most of them will.Most of them.
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"The magical dark academia vibes are WONDERFUL. Starting this book I was hesitant because I only liked 3 of the 6 initiates at first. But as the story progresses I definitely feel like most of the characters fill out in their nuances and all have really interesting motivations that propel their story forward and knit their stories together. And by the end of the book I like all but one of the characters introduced and it is definitely by design that I dislike that character. Additionally, the characters outside the six are all very interesting and I love that their roles are vitally impactful on the story. I LOVE the chapters being told from a different character’s POV rather than a consistent narrator. I feel like that really allows the reader to get to know the characters without having to include tons of exposition. I really like the magic structure implemented in this series and how it not only needs to be learned and shaped not only in how to use it but the nature of life and the magic itself. I love the themes and morality questions posed throughout the story about power, knowledge, magic, truth, exclusivity, time, survival, and hunger. My biggest critique is the use of Reina. I think she is SUCH a cool character but she kinda takes a back seat through the story. I hope she gets to hold more of the narrative as the trilogy progresses! I’m so excited to read the next book, I’m hoping it will develop the characters further and continue weaving such an interesting story. "
"While it started slow for me and had serious pacing issues for the beginning third, I liked the intrigue the author sets up with each character's motive. Obviously a lot of world building and character development occured off page by the author to have so many deep questions available to ask. I will read the next book in hopes of the mystery unraveling in a rewarding way for the reader. Dark academia fans will enjoy this tantalizing tale. Adult themes run throughout. "