I was always more interested in the "real" Atlantis that the ones that popped up in fiction ever since I read a "Reader's Digest" article that explained how archeologists were looking at the volcanic island of Thera in the Aegean sea as the legendary island. The most interesting part of the article talked about how the volcanic explosions that destroyed Thera may well have been the cause of the plagues of Egypt, all of which are apparently associated with volcanic eruptions. Since I am planning a trip to Greece early next year that could involve a few days on the black sand beaches of Thera, I have been doing a bit of research on both the place and the legends of Atlantis.
"Atlantis the Lost City?" is one of the Dorling Kindersley Readers for young readers (Level 4, Proficient Readers), that combines lots of color photographs and detailed illustrations with informative text. Andrew Donkin basically informs young readers about the history of the search for Atlantis, looking at the original story told by Plato (which may have been meant as an allegory rather than a true tale), and then covering all of the various locations around the world where people have been convinced they have found the lost city/continent. Donkin takes pain to explain not only the reasons why a particular location, such as the Azores or Crete, were picked, but also the evidence that exists against those locations. Consequently, without explicitly intending to do so, "Atlantis the Lost City?" introduces young readers to how archaeologists do their work, both in terms of uncovering ancient treasures and in reasoning out where to look. Besides, you really cannot beat the price on these books.