I'm really excited to be able to host YA author Ally Condie on her ATLANTIA Blog tour!

Short Q&A from Ally Condie:

1) What influenced you to write about a world under the sea?
Even though ATLANTIA isn’t a book about mermaids (it’s about humans living in a city they built underwater in order to avoid pollution), I got the initial idea from re-reading Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid. (The original story is VERY different from the Disney version—much darker.) In that story, the separation between the land and the ocean is so stark and unreachable, and yet the little mermaid longs to live somewhere other than where she is. I found that yearning so poignant, and I used that as the basis for Rio. She was born in Atlantia, underwater, and yet she knows and feels that she needs to be somewhere else.

2) Love the idea of the world above and the world below. If you had a choice, what would you choose and why?
I’d pick the Above, even though in the story it’s been ruined by pollution. I just don’t think I could live in a place with walls. I like the feeling of space around me.

3) What do you do if you hit a wall in your writing?
If I get stuck, I have a few tricks. I’ll either work on another project, or read something fun, or go for a walk or a run. But usually, since I’m a mom, I’ll get stuck and then go do all the kid things with them, and by the time I can write again and they’re all in bed or all at school, I’m ready to go.

4) Do you celebrate after you finish a project? If yes, what do you do?
I do like to celebrate a little when I’ve reached a big milestone—turning in a draft to my editor, for example, usually means we get takeout from The Bombay House, our favorite restaurant. And then, instead of working after the kids go to sleep, my husband and I will re-watch a favorite episode of SHERLOCK or PARKS AND REC. I love that kind of thing. My husband has also bought me a necklace—nothing fancy or expensive, but meaningful—to wear to the book launch for each of my books. Which is very lovely of him.

5) Do you have a favorite place to write?
I love to write in my office. For so long, I didn’t have one (just a corner in the living room or a bedroom), and two years ago we moved into a home that had a dedicated office space. It’s so nice because it has windows! And bookshelves! And a bulletin board with inspiration pictures and photos of my family! I do most of my work there. Of course, I have learned to write on the road or other places, but my office is definitely my happy place as far as writing goes.

Title: Atlantia
Author: Ally Condie
Published: October 28th from Dutton Children's (Penguin Teen)
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.

My YA Books Central review:

A great tale of the love of sisters set in a futuristic world under the sea. I loved Condie’s dystopian series MATCHED and once again she delivers an amazing new tale!

What worked: I loved the twist on ‘The Little Mermaid’ set in a future world with Sirens. Think people that can control others with their voices. Some worship them. Others fear them. There are two worlds: the ‘Above’ which has been ravaged by pollution and destruction and Atlantia, the “Below” a domed world under the sea.

A huge plus of this story has to be the love between sisters. Rio and her twin sister Bay are very close. The loss of their Minister mother still haunts both of them. Rio longs to go above and see the sun and feel the air. When an unexpected decision has Bay leave for the Above, Rio sets out to find out the real reason.

Condie shows us the determination of Rio even when her search leads her to Maire, her mother’s Siren sister. There are twists and turns and some surprising reveals that threaten everything Rio has believed in. Condie scratches below the surface and we find that some motivations on what individuals do (or don’t do) aren’t all what they seem.

Atlantia is a major character in this story. This world is shown in vivid, rich strokes that is mesmerizing with under water temples, bats with blue wings, and metal trees with chiming leaves. The world is rich and colorful. Rio loves Atlantia but notices something is off and her world is collapsing. The contrast between the world she loves and the one that is coming apart propels her to make an important choice that pivots the storyline.

There’s even a love interest-True-who has his own secret.

There is so much to love about this story--action, suspense, and a sisterly love that transcends anything that is thrown in its way.

Plus, there's a giveaway for a chance to win a galley of ATLANTIA and a very cool necklace:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the team #Above for chances of prizes!

October 9- Audra (TheSociety.Net) – Long Q&A
October 11 – Emily (Emily’s Reading Room) – Review
October 13 – Magan (Rather Be Reading) – Guest post
October 15 – Nereyda (Mostly YA Obsessed) – Fancasting
October 17 – Stacy (Girls in the Stacks) – Long Q&A
October 19 – Kait ( – Long Q&A
October 21 – Kathy (I Am A Reader) - Review
October 23 – Lena (Addicted 2 Novels) – Guest post
October 25 – Lauren (Alice Marvels) – Review
October 27 – Gillian (Writer of Wrongs) – Review

**Thanks to Penguin Teen for the ARC and the necklace + the necklace images!


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