ARC Book Review: The Empress by S.J. Kincaid


ashley | I deeply enjoyed The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid. It was entertaining and well written and I really liked the story, it’s stuck with me well after I finished the book which doesn’t often happen. I liked it so much that I wanted all that enjoyment to be self contained into one standalone book for fear of it being even the slightest bit tarnished. But the sequel, The Empress, wasn’t long to follow and I very cautiously dipped back into this world to see what would happen next.
I always have a hard time with the second book in a series, I find a lot of the time they exist just to fill the gap between the beginning and the climactic end and often it seems to drag or nothing vital happens except for maybe one thing. I’m afraid this falls into that category. This is super heavy on the intergalactic politics, which was a primary focus in the first book, but the first book was written as a standalone book so there were also a lot of other things happening to balance out the story and keep things moving.
I found this very slow paced and I don’t know if I just don’t remember the first book, but the feel of this book seemed a lot different too. I wasn’t as drawn to Nemesis this time around, and I think that could be because in the first book, she was driven by protecting Sadonia and they shared such a unique friendship and kind of a love, and that same feeling doesn’t translate as well to the romantic relationship that takes the place of that in the second book.
I was very surprised with how hard it was for me to get into this and to push through it. I expected to enjoy this a lot more and that just didn’t happen. It never really seemed to pick up for me and while I thought it as interesting to see how Nemesis planned to take out the enemies threatening Tyrus and there were enough life-threatening obstacles and surprises to keep me on edge, it became very repetitive after a while and just wasn’t enough to hold my interest.
I also got really tired of Tyrus and Nemesis trying to trust each other. It’s a huge obstacle they have to overcome, but they spend so much time asking each other to just trust their judgement and plans instead of explaining them or working together. I also didn’t really believe the depths of this love they supposedly shared with each other, which I found really frustrating. They weren’t a team, I couldn’t root for them, they were working independently, both wrestling for the upper hand and hoping the other would just trust them and go along with things.
I try hard to find some good in books even when I’m not enjoying them and this was written well and it wasn’t necessarily a bad book, I did really enjoy the ending actually, but I think I was so in love with the first one and really had my heart set on it being a standalone book, that in all honesty, this might not have had much of a chance to win me over from the start. I haven’t totally written then the third book off, I’m still a little hopeful maybe things will come together in the end, and as things were left, my interest has been reignited, but I will approach it with some hesitance and caution.
more information
amazongoodreads website

october 31, 2017

copy provided for honest review by
Net Galley