The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid
The Diabolic, book 1
The Diabolic, book 1
Published November 1, 2016 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
e-ARC provided by Edelweiss
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A Diabolic is ruthless. A Diabolic is powerful. A Diabolic has a single task: Kill in order to protect the person you’ve been created for. Nothing else.For Nemesis, that person is Sidonia, heir to the galactic Senate. The two grew up side by side, and there’s no one Nemesis wouldn’t kill to keep her safe. But when the power-mad Emperor summons Sidonia to the Imperial Court as a hostage, there is only one way for Nemesis to protect Sidonia.She must become her.Now one of the galaxy’s most dangerous weapons is masquerading in a world of corrupt politicians and two-faced Senators’ children, and Nemesis must find within herself the one thing she’s been told she doesn’t have—humanity. With the Empire beginning to fracture and rebellion looming, that could be the one thing that saves her and the Empire itself.
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AHHH. GUYS. THIS COMES OUT IN LESS THAN A MOOOONTH.
And I so badly want to read it again. This book was BRILLIANT.
Like I've mentioned before, this book is NOTHING like Red Queen--and I'm not just saying that because I don't like that book (even though I don't)--or The Hunger Games. That, I do believe, is just to garner more hype around this book. And that's not bad! Not at all! If anything, this book DESERVES the hype--it's a completely fresh take on sci-fi/space drama or whatever. But it isn't like those overhyped series. I want to make this extremely clear so none of you big fans out there feel cheated.
So what is this book like, then? Well. I don't think it can be classified as anything you've really read before--like I (should have) said, unique.
The main character is a Diabolic, which basically means she isn't human but a deadly creature. She's made to kill. At an early age, Nemesis is chosen to be a bodyguard to the senator’s daughter, Sidonia. And it's kind of a painful thing--they're like connected through their brains. (Excuse my faulty memory here, I read this several months ago and made the dumb mistake of not scheduling a review ahead of time.) Anyway it means that a nonhuman creature like Nemesis only cares about one person: Sidonia.
Anyway. One day the Emperor calls all the senators kids to his little kingdom. Of course, Sidonia's parents know that the Emperor would use Sidonia to get to them so they decide to send in Nemesis instead. And you might be thinking: how the hell would that work? Trust me on this, I was extremely doubtful too but Kincaid pulls it off brilliantly.
Now Nemesis has to maintain her cover in a lion's den. And it's a pretty wild ride.
Nemesis was such an amazing character. She knows she isn't capable of being human or having their weak emotions (goals) and she's completely fine with that. She doesn't seek to change herself. She doesn't feel bad if she has to hurt people. I've been so TIRED of characters feeling remorse when they have to acknowledge that side of them that having Nemesis just owning her deadliness is pure bliss.
I remember being wary about the whole gaining her humanity thing--I thought it'd be what I just told you guys I hated. But it wasn't like that! Yes, Nemesis does come to be a bit more human, but it's such a gradual change and honestly? It didn't even feel like that big of a change. Because she still knows what she is--she knows she's still dangerous as hell and she'll do whatever the hell she wants, emotions be damned. But the point in trying to make here is that there's some great development here. And for a standalone, to do it so gradually and believably is impressive to say the least.
I also remember wondering about a romance in the book. There is one, and it's a slow burn, and it's absolutely wonderful. Because both parties are cunning and extremely smart. Because both parties know and acknowledge the fact there's something bigger than the two of them being together. This isn't sappy. This isn't overwhelming. This is a rather convenient setup for the both of them and a hell of a lot interesting things happen because of them.
So! It goes to say that I absolutely LOVE this book. Definitely one of my favourites, not of just the year, but most likely all time.
ALL THE STARS, my friends. I highly recommend this and do hope you all check it out when it releases!