Novel Book Review · Review · Sci-Fi

Book Review: The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid


Title: The Diabolic (The Diabolic #1)

Author: S.J. Kincaid

Genre: Sci-Fi, Young Adult, Fantasy, Dystopia

Date Published: November 1st, 2016

Publisher: Simon Schuster Books

Goodreads Rating: 4.07

Goodreads Synopsis:

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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Hiya bessies!

How are you all?


Let’s start this review immediately! 😛


First thoughts, this book has great storyline. It’s the kind of book that is set in the space but doesn’t feel like it was set in space. Haha! It was great. I was having good time reading it. Until I realize that this got politics in it. A lot of politics.


Bes, I’m not someone who hates politics being a subject inside a book. But I’m the kind who avoids it as much as I can because I do not like talking about politics. Like, I just want me some good, cozy and maybe an action-packed book with romance, lots of romance if possible. I want to enjoy my reads but I feel like if there’s politics in there, I can’t enjoy it because I’m not the type who understands deeper politics. I’m not ignorant to it either, I understand enough.


When I realized that this book is 80% politics and only got 10% bad-assery, 10% romance I was considering being biased and not love it. However, that would be unfair. So I didn’t change any feelings I have towards this book. I kept reading and I’m glad I did.


The characters are great. They have great personalities and I’m blown by how cunning and clever they are.


Let’s talk about Nemesis, the main character of this book.


She’s great, bad-ass, and an amazing diabolic. She’s a good friend too and very devoted kinds as are diabolics are supposed to be. And I like that she’s suspicious to every single person she met when she arrived in Chrysanthemum, where the Emperor resides. It’s good that she’s got trust issues. I have trust issues myself with the villainy types of characters in this book. I feel like anyone can be her enemy and she might not find an ally or two. It’s good that I’m not that worried about her safety while she’s in Chrysanthemum because she’s already doing things that prevent her to be betrayed by other characters. She’s smart and clever too. I like that about her. One thing that I don’t like though is that she’s aggressive and really impulsive. She thinks things through a bit late and she’s easily deceived because of her trust issues. I hate her reaction around the last scheme she’s experienced in the book. But I’m glad she’s got to her senses and recovered and didn’t do anything rash and even went as to take a risk again despite what happened to her.


Now let’s talk about Tyrus Domitrian.

Can I just say that when his character first appeared, I felt something towards him? It’s a weird feeling but out of all the people living in the Chrysanthemum, he’s the only one I actually kind of trusted. I mean, I think I saw through him. I saw, or rather felt in my gut, for who he really is. And I trusted his character immediately. And I never doubted him. I just hope I wasn’t wrong.


I didn’t quite like Sidonia Impyrean’s character.

Is it so mean that I was glad about what happened to her? I don’t know, I guess that’s mean. But I can’t help it. I was glad of what happened to her. 😛 Sorry not sorry.



The story doesn’t have that very huge, mind blowing plot twist. (Oops!) However! The story reflected a lot about what’s happening in our society technology-wise. There’s this line that Cygna, Tryus’ grandmother, said that why do we still need to learn things when we can just let the computers do it for us. And that right there is a very big slap about the reality of our society about technologies.


The people in this story became so dependent on machines and automation stuff that they actually banned studying math and science. And if people in real aren’t becoming that kind of people, bes, I might be living in another planet. I admit myself that I became dependent on technologies too. And reading this book, realizing just that thought that we rely too much on techs, made me want to commend this book! This is indeed great!


The characters in this book are cunning, clever, and very smart. It was somehow the battle of the most cunning and clever. Everyone is planning a scheme towards each other to overthrow this and that. It was such a fun time reading it.


The narration is told in a first person POV, Nemesis’. And I’ve always say this, first person POV makes me read the book even faster than third person POV. However, I couldn’t understand why it felt like it took me longer to actually finish this book. I feel like whenever I read this, I’m flying through the pages and reading pretty fast. But I have very small progress every time I read. Like how is that even possible? XD I guess I just can’t ride Nemesis’ way of narration sometimes. Plus whenever I get to the parts where she’d just explain the political stuff in the book, I’d just float. I mean, my mind floats and doesn’t really absorb properly the words I’m reading. Haha! I don’t know. That always happens to me whenever I read political stuff in a book.


The ending didn’t left me wanting to read the second book. The teaser to the second book is the one that made me want to read the second book. I don’t know how to place the ending of this book. It wasn’t really a cliffhanger but it still felt like a cliffhanger. Lol! Still, I can’t wait to read the second book. I’ve heard that it’s not as good as the first one but I guess I’ll just have to wait and find it out myself.


To wrap this up, this book is really good. It didn’t blow my mind in a usual way but it blew my mind at how it was so blunt about the reality of the world. If you’re the type of reader who loves politics, a lot of scheming, and a bit of romance while all those are happening in space then this read is very perfect for you. I totally recommend this, bessies! Read this!














S.J. Kincaid originally wanted to be an astronaut, but a dearth of mathematical skills turned her interest to science fiction instead. Her debut novel, Insignia, was shortlisted for the Waterstones prize. Its sequels, Vortex and Catalyst, have received starred reviews from Kirkus Reviews and Booklist. Her next book, The Diabolic, comes out in the Fall of 2016. She’s chronically restless and has lived in California, Alabama, New Hampshire, Oregon, Chicago, and Scotland with no signs of staying in one place anytime soon.


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What about you, bessies? Have you read this book? What are your thoughts about this? Let’s talk in the comments!



Thanks for reading up to here, bessies! Love you all!



2 thoughts on “Book Review: The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid

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