A New York Times bestseller
Red Queen meets The Hunger Games in this epic novel about what happens when a senator's daughter is summoned to the galactic court as a hostage, but she's really the galaxy's most dangerous weapon in disguise. Read more...
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A New York Times bestseller
Red Queen meets The Hunger Games in this epic novel about what happens when a senator's daughter is summoned to the galactic court as a hostage, but she's really the galaxy's most dangerous weapon in disguise.
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.
Nemesis is a Diabolic, a humanoid teenager created to protect a galactic senator's daughter, Sidonia. The two have grown up side by side, but are in no way sisters. Nemesis is expected to give her life for Sidonia, and she would do so gladly. She would also take as many lives as necessary to keep Sidonia safe.
When the power-mad Emperor learns Sidonia's father is participating in a rebellion, he summons Sidonia to the Galactic court. She is to serve as a hostage. Now, there is only one way for Nemesis to protect Sidonia. She must become her. Nemesis travels to the court disguised as Sidonia--a killing machine masquerading in a world of corrupt politicians and two-faced senators' children. It's a nest of vipers with threats on every side, but Nemesis must keep her true abilities a secret or risk everything.
As the Empire begins to fracture and rebellion looms closer, Nemesis learns there is something more to her than just deadly force. She finds a humanity truer than what she encounters from most humans. Amidst all the danger, action, and intrigue, her humanity just might be the thing that saves her life--and the empire.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-10-24
- Reviewer: Staff
In a far future with space travel and a ruling class living mostly on orbital stations, engineered human servants called Diabolics are trained to be the best protection money can buy. Diabolics also have their brains manipulated, so they only care about the person they have been hired to protect. When the emperor outlaws Diabolics, Nemesis doesn't count on her liege, Sidonia von Impyrean, persuading her parents to hide Nemesis, rather than destroying her as ordered. More surprises come when the emperor orders Sidonia to attend him at court, intending to keep her hostage against her father's political maneuvering. Nemesis travels to the imperial court, the Chrysanthemum, in Sidonia's place, where she has to contend with sleazy politicians, attempted assaults, murder, and a mad prince. Fans of over-the-top futuristic fare like Jupiter Ascending will love the set pieces and glamour of the court, but Kincaid's (Insignia) flashy story falls short in other areas, including fairly flat villains and a romantic plot that plays out predictably. Ages 14up. Agent: Holly Root, Waxman Leavell Literary. (Nov.)
An ambitious sci-fi tackles tough social issues
Set in distant space in a galactic empire, The Diabolic is narrated by Nemesis, a humanoid teenage girl born and bred to be a weapon. Her only job is to protect Sidonia, a senator’s daughter, which she will do at any cost. When Sidonia’s father is suspected of treason, the Emperor orders Sidonia to the capital as a hostage, but Nemesis goes in her place. Upon arrival, Nemesis quickly makes enemies, but she also forms a shaky alliance with the enigmatic Tyrus, who is playing his own dangerous political game. After a tragedy, Nemesis must put her life—and the fate of the empire—into the hands of people she doesn’t fully comprehend.
Nemesis isn’t the most compelling character here. That distinction goes to Tyrus, who has been brought up in a royal household lorded over by a ruthless grandmother akin to King Richard III. His methods of survival and his ability to strategize are impressive, leaving readers to wonder if he can really be trusted.
Like a Primanti Brothers sandwich, there’s a lot stuffed inside the covers of this book: political sabotage, intergalactic travel, planetary negotiations, chemical warfare, feminism, murder, romance and religion. This isn’t science fiction with an emphasis on science, even though a major theme of the book is how the empire manipulates religion and withholds technology in order to subjugate its people. It’s an ambitious page-turner fueled by plot twists, character deaths and high-stakes action.
Kimberly Giarratano is the author of Grunge Gods and Graveyards, a young adult paranormal mystery.