I had great intentions. My intent was to read this ARC and review it right before it was published on November 1st. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. What did happen is that I got sick, and was able to read this in one blissfully quiet day in bed. I have to say that I am glad that it happened that way. I was simply unable to put this one down. A novel so gripping and original that it was hard to remember that I was in fact ill, so immersed in the story of Nemesis the Diabolic.
She is an animal. Bred only for the nobility and bred to kill. She is to be bound to one only and to protect that one at all costs. The only one she will ever love and ever die for. It is ingrained in her beliefs that she is lower than any life form and is set apart from the idea that we all come from one divine cosmos. She serves and she dies, there is nothing for her after that.
The one she serves; Sedonia Impyrean. Through a chemical enhancement Nemesis was given the opportunity to feel genuine love for Sedonia and then purchased by the Impyrean Senator for his daughter. But now, the emperor of their entire world believes the Senator a traitor to the Heliocentric beliefs and desires Sedonia to come to court as a willing hostage for her fathers heretical crimes against the Emperor.
To go to the Emperor is to die, or so that is what Sedonia’s mother the Matriarch believes. She secretly plans to send their Diabolic in her place since no one really knows what Sedonia Impyrean look like. Of course, because Nemesis will do anything to protect Sedonia, she willingly goes through painful body modifications to appear human and go in her place. She will die for her but what she doesn’t realize, is that Sedonia would willingly die for her too so great is her love for Nemesis.
They would die for each other, and for that this story is unique. Two unlikely friends, vow that neither will die. Not a boy and a girl willing to sacrifice for romantic love, but two friends willing to sacrifice for the love of a best friend. With so much available in the YA genre for fantasy, it is hard to find something unique and unlike other YA fantasy novels. I believe that Kincaid has done a phenomenal job of beginning a book with a friendship rather than girl meets boy and they fall in love and then the fate of the world is in their hands. Not to say that this story doesn’t have it fair share of some romance, because what would a fantasy novel be without it? It just shows up quite differently and in a very smart manner.
The manner of the novel is quite character based with a plot line that is sure to keep your attention. Once again the fall of humanity is coming into question as power and pleasure are more important to the powerful than knowledge and progression. This is where a war could be fought and there are some, including Nemesis, that will now try to fight for more than just survival.
The writing here was beautiful and I loved the very clever world building. It was very SciFi as it takes place on ships in space. These beautiful ships provide their living quarters as they desire to live space side instead of planet side. Kincaid was able paint a wondrous picture of what it would be like to see space outside of earth and what it could be like to live out there. And what lives out there are much greater terrors than anything found on earth. I don’t mean monsters, I mean the humans.
It means so much to me to read such incredible work. And then, to get to share it with others, well, that is the icing on the cake.
One more thing…Fantastically gorgeous cover art!
I received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Buy it now: The Diabolic