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The Empress

Review

The Empress

From S.J. Kincaid, New York Times bestselling author of the Insignia series, comes THE EMPRESS --- the second novel in the Diabolic trilogy. This addictive sci-fi space opera will captivate fans of the Illuminae and Red Queen series as they are lured into the world of the Galactic Empire.

After the thrilling ending of THE DIABOLIC, Tyrus has ascended the throne with Nemesis by his side. Together, they aim to forge a new empire where knowledge will be spread and Diabolics are accepted as humans all across the universe. However, there are still many people in the Empire who’d rather die than allow a Diabolic to rule as their empress alongside a foolish teenage king.

With a rebellion slowly rising against them, Nemesis is willing to do whatever it takes in order to protect Tyrus and his crown. Finding the balance between her natural instincts as a Diabolic and her newly discovered humanity is not as easy as it seems for Nemesis, though. The empress that the Empire needs her to be is not the one who can save the throne from the vicious Galactic senators who wish to usurp Tyrus. As they head down the path to dominance over the Empire, Nemesis and Tyrus will be forced to question whether the reward of a reformed Empire outweighs the cost of all the grim things they’ll have to do in order to win it.

"With its endless twists, an intriguing world and charming characters, THE EMPRESS is a stunning sci-fi novel that will leave readers breathless as they engage in its enthralling plot."

After reading THE DIABOLIC, I was obsessed with practically everything about the novel, and when I first heard that it had been expanded into a trilogy, I was thrilled. Of course, with any series that is extended beyond its original length, I was a bit wary of how a sequel would actually turn out to be; however, readers shouldn’t be scared of THE EMPRESS, because this novel was everything that THE DIABOLIC was and even more.

I cannot stress enough how amazing Kincaid is at making my heart race and break into a million pieces in a matter of a few simple paragraphs. The constant plot twists that are delivered in every chapter stress me out yet lure me way deeper into the novel. Nemesis and Tyrus experience so many ups and downs, and I felt as if I had read three books worth of content in one novel as there were just so many things going on. I do have to mention that the first 40% of the novel was a bit slow and info-dumpy at times; however, after reaching that point, I was in absolute awe of everything that happened and have never felt so immersed into a novel.

One of my favorite aspects of THE EMPRESS is the focus on the political games that Nemesis and Tyrus are forced to play in order to secure the throne. Watching them attempt to establish dominance over the Grandiloquy and remain ten steps ahead of all their enemies was fascinating to witness as they are both extremely intelligent and clever characters, who know exactly what they’re doing. I also love the fact that in the world of THE EMPRESS the battle for the throne is primarily based off of who is able to outwit and outplay their opponent at political games rather than who possesses the largest army. In a way, it’s a galactic game of “Survivor.” Throughout the novel, I also saw many parallels to a lot of today’s political controversies, which I thought was intriguing to say the least.

Throughout THE EMPRESS, Nemesis continues to be the incredible main character that she was in THE DIABOLIC. With each and every page, she blooms into her new human-self even more and takes charge of things when Tyrus is too stubborn to, and even though she has an undying loyalty to Tyrus, she still remains independent and strong by herself. On the other hand, there’s Tyrus who I love, yet hate. He has moments where he seems so perfect, yet then again, there are moments where I wish Nemesis would strangle him. After the ending of THE DIABOLIC, Kincaid left me with many doubts and suspicions about his character and relationship with Nemesis, so exploring those dynamics was something that I looked forward to in THE EMPRESS. And, thankfully, Kincaid delved into the depths of their relationship and trust, which I found really compelling.

With its endless twists, an intriguing world and charming characters, THE EMPRESS is a stunning sci-fi novel that will leave readers breathless as they engage in its enthralling plot.

Reviewed by Makayla H., Teen Board Member on January 26, 2018

The Empress
by S. J. Kincaid