{Blog Tour} The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid Review + "My Writing Journey in GIFs"

Sunday, 30 October 2016

Ever since I heard The Diabolic pitched as something comparable to The Hunger Games/Game of Thrones/Star Wars, I was definitely intrigued! Luckily this was a book which didn't disappoint, and despite my high expectations, I ended up really enjoying this gritty and engrossing read. 

To set the scene, here's the book trailer, complete with cinematic background music...

The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid
Released: 1st November 2016
Published by: Simon and Schuster Australia
Genre: YA Sci-fi
Source: Publisher
Pages: 416
My Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Simon and Schuster | Booktopia | Book Depository
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 inside her that is true and pure – more so than that of most humans she encounters. Amidst all the danger, action and intrigue, her humanity just might be the thing that saves her life – and the empire.
Thank you to Simon and Schuster Australia for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

The Diabolic is a gripping futuristic novel, exploring the issues of unfailing loyalty and protection, the bounds of friendship and questioning humanity when supposedly a being has none. Though in the beginning, I may have been skeptical of the bold comparisons this story had been held to, soon enough the plot had me hooked with every twist and moral dilemma to follow.

Nemesis is definitely one of the most badass protagonists I've come across in this genre. Her unwavering loyalty as a Diabolic to Sidonia was admirable, though detail isn't spared when it comes to getting rid of potential threats to that Impyrean's life. The fighter in Nemesis however isn't her only characteristic. There's the fundamental question of whether she does actually possess the capacity for feeling more human emotions, and this aspect of what comprises the humanity in anyone is an element which Kincaid executed well. 

World-building is another strong-suit of The Diabolic. Though it took most of the first half of the book to fully understand the customs, values and underlying conflicts in this world where education is punishable under the belief of 'Helionics' and the Emperor rules with inherently corrupt motives, it is these complexities which ultimately make the storyline so fascinating. This is a vividly imagined society hurtling through space, where knowledge is power, and playing to the ears of the right 'Grandiloquy' can be make or break. Once Nemesis is brought onto the scene disguised as Sidonia, the story escalates to new levels of heightened tension, and it is here where her character faces the biggest challenges; and sometimes taking unexpected turns. 


It's not so often that novels like these are 'stand-alones', though in this case it works - there is just the right amount of action to keep your eyes glued to the page, right up to the very last word. The Diabolic is the latest YA release to hit the shelves which not only possesses the hallmarks of its renowned comparisons, but has a unique identity all of its own. 

Guest post from S.J. Kincaid - "My Writing Journey in Gifs"

I could never possibly get published, so I'll find an office job.

I write for a hobby. I'll give a crack at a book after all!

I'll even co-write it with my best friend!

Whoa, our book got an agent! 

Agent has simply stopped e-mailing us. Guess she forgot we exist?

Goodbye, Agent.

Book two. Book three... Now I have an agent again! Finally!

Book doesn't sell.

Okay, onto the next manuscript.

Agent doesn't like next manuscript.

Leave agent. Send out three manuscripts for new agent. No agents accept.

Write another manuscript. This is old hat now.

Get an agent! Happy, though I've been here before without selling...

Book does not sell. Not so surprised.

Pursue real world job, and give one last shot to book seven. After this, I am giving up on this. Done.

Book sells! It actually sells!!! 

Career begins.

A big thank you to S.J. Kincaid for that gif-filled post - it just goes to show that the writing journey may not be an easy one, but getting published can become a reality if you keep that dream alive.

Read Me Love Me Share Me (The Simon and Schuster Australia YA page) will also be releasing a special video on release day and a giveaway for the book on 4th November. Details will be up on their facebook page.

Check out the other stops on the tour!


  1. I loved that GIF story! Writing often seems like an exhausting career path, but I know that in the end it's worth it <3

    1. Exactly - it's all about focusing on that end goal!


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