Adventure (Teen), Romance, Science Fiction, YA Fiction

The Diabolic by S. J. Kincaid

When it comes to science fiction novels, it is either a hit or a miss. There is no in between for me. I’m always eager to get my hands on a sci-fi novel but my expectations are always very high. I want a story that is unique and that will excite me in a way I could never imagine. I find that many teen novels have really cool science fiction stories, so I tend to gravitate towards whatever is the latest book out there in this genre. This time, I picked out The Diabolic in the hopes that it would deliver on all fronts.

Nemesis isn’t human, she is a diabolic, created for the sole purpose of protecting Senator Impyrean’s daughter, Sidonia. Nemesis loves her to death; she would kill anyone to keep Sidonia safe. But when the Emperor summons Sidonia to the galactic court as a hostage, the only way Nemesis can keep Sidonia safe is to become her. In a court full of corruption, Nemesis must hide her true abilities. As the Empire begins to show signs of weakness and rumors or rebellion abound, Nemesis discovers that there is another side to her, one that is vastly different from her deadly strength: her humanity. And it might be the only thing that will save her and Sidonia.

This novel started off great. There was action, there was violence, there was a main character who is cold-blooded to the core. Everything was believable and the emotions (or lack thereof) all tied in to create a cohesive character and plot. But then things changed and I stopped liking the story. It became a romance. Now, there is nothing wrong with romance novels. But if the author is going to start off with a really cool action/sci-fi premise, there is an expectation that this will carry forward until the end of the book. That did not happen. Instead, Nemesis becomes a wishy-washy heroine who is weak-willed and no longer fights and acts like a complete badass. That ruined the story for me. Yes, it was fast-paced and there was interesting political intrigue. But I wasn’t looking for any of that. I wanted violence, and crazy fighting scenes, and to see the rage and destruction that comes from being a Diabolic. The story was well-written, and the plot had good pacing, but the novel just disappointed me because it didn’t live up to its premise. This was supposed to be a standalone but the author has just announced that she plans to make it a trilogy. However, I don’t think I’m going to be giving this series a chance.

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