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The Book of Atlantis Black Summary and Reviews

The Book of Atlantis Black

The Search for a Sister Gone Missing

by Betsy Bonner

The Book of Atlantis Black by Betsy Bonner X
The Book of Atlantis Black by Betsy Bonner
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Book Summary

Reminiscent of Alex Marzano-Lesnevich's The Fact of a Body and Robert Kolker's Lost Girls, with equal parts memoir and true crime, The Book of Atlantis Black will have you questioning facts, rooting for secrets, and asking what it means to know the truth.

A young woman is found dead on the floor of a Tijuana hotel room. An ID in a nearby purse reads "Atlantis Black." The police report states that the body does not seem to match the identification, yet the body is quickly cremated and the case is considered closed.

So begins Betsy Bonner's search for her sister, Atlantis, and the unraveling of the mysterious final months before Atlantis's disappearance, alleged overdose, and death. With access to her sister's email and social media accounts, Bonner attempts to decipher and construct a narrative: frantic and unintelligible Facebook posts, alarming images of a woman with a handgun, Craigslist companionship ads, DEA agent testimony, video surveillance, police reports, and various phone calls and moments in the flesh conjured from memory. Through a history only she and Atlantis shared―a childhood fraught with abuse and mental illness, Atlantis's precocious yet short rise in the music world, and through it all an unshakable bond of sisterhood―Bonner finds questions that lead only to more questions and possible clues that seem to point in no particular direction. In this haunting memoir and piercing true crime account, Bonner must decide how far she will go to understand a sister who, like the mythical island she renamed herself for, might prove impossible to find.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"A haunting, profound investigative memoir that will resonate with readers as both a compelling true crime story and an affecting literary work. Bonner creates a sense of closeness with readers that makes this book a challenge to put down or forget." - Library Journal (starred review)

"Carefully crafted, haunting, and absorbing, this thrilling memoir echoes in the head and heart long after the final page." - Kirkus Reviews

"[A] piercing true crime investigation...The Book of Atlantis Black assumes the qualities of the departed musician herself: marked by yearning, it revolves around absences and is irresistible to the end." - Foreword Reviews

"Maddening and fascinating. The reader is made to feel what it's like to be denied answers in an essential search." - Amy Hempel, author of Sing to It

"Atlantis Black was―is?―an extraordinary woman whose descent into madness will leave you spellbound and heartbroken. Betsy Bonner writes with the precision of a poet and the courage of a survivor. I could not put this book down." - Domenica Ruta, author of With or Without You

"Betsy Bonner has crafted a terse, urgent page-turner that is equally ode, elegy, and mystery." - Chelsey Johnson, author of Stray City

"In mournful, meticulous―and sometimes wryly funny―prose, The Book of Atlantis Black gives us an unforgettable portrait of an impossible yet compelling young woman taken down by her own demons, and fighting every step of the way." - David Gates, author of A Hand Reached Down to Guide Me

"Suspenseful and beautiful...I'm speechless." - Jeannie Vanasco, author of Things We Didn't Talk About When I Was a Girl

The information about The Book of Atlantis Black shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Betsy Bonner

Betsy Bonner is the author of Round Lake, a poetry collection published by Four Way Books. She is a faculty member of the Writer's Foundry M.F.A. program at St. Joseph's College in Brooklyn, New York and the former Director of the 92Y Unterberg Poetry Center, where she teaches an annual poetry seminar. Her work has appeared in the New Republic, the Paris Review, Parnassus, Poetry Daily, the Brooklyn Quarterly and the Southampton Review. She holds an MFA in creative writing from Columbia University and a BA from Sarah Lawrence College. She is a fellow of the MacDowell Colony, Eliot House and the VCCA, and a mentor in PEN's Prison Writing Program.

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