Mini-reviews: Heartless + The Diabolic

pub 11/8/16 by Feiwel & Friends
Young Adult - Fantasy/Retelling
Received ARC from pub
This is the second retelling I’ve read of Alice in Wonderland that focuses on the Queen of Hearts (she’s popular this year!) and I was so impressed with Marissa Meyer’s version. She truly let us get to know the girl which made Catherine's downward spiral towards becoming the villainous queen that much more heartbreaking.

Catherine is one of the most eligible girls in Wonderland but she has her heart set on opening up a bakery with her best friend. She’s talented and already known throughout the kingdom for her delicious pastries. But her parents have other plans for her, namely to marry the King of Hearts, who’s very interested in her, much to her dismay. On the day she manages to avoid the king’s first attempt at proposing, Catherine meets the Jest, the mysterious court jester who she starts to have a secret relationship with. To say it’s a tangled web she’s weaved would be an understatement. But I quickly rooted for Catherine and shipped her forbidden romance with Jest. I loved that she was a baker (the descriptions of her concoctions made me hungry!) and I loved seeing new sides of Wonderland through her eyes. It’s with Jest that she meets familiar (to us) characters and again, I was so impressed by how Meyer meshed classic Alice with her own distinct story.

Do I recommend? I do! I was a little skeptical going into this because Alice isn’t one of my favorite childhood books (I have yet to read it!) but I was very glad I gave it a chance. Namely because I adore Meyer’s writing and this proved yet again, just why I do.

pub 11/1/16 by Simon & Schuster
Books for Young Readers
Young Adult - Sci-fi
ARC from Alexa
Nemesis is a Diabolic which means she's a genetically enhanced human groomed to protect a single person and her person is Sidonia, a galactic senator's daughter. They grow up together and to the outside world, she is nothing more than a thing expected to give her life for Sidonia at any moment. And it's true, Nemesis would do anything for Sidonia. But Sidonia truly sees Nemesis as a friend and companion. This is just the beginning of how Kincaid shows us that there's much more to Nemesis than meets the eye. It was actually really interesting to have this seemingly devoid of emotion and ruthless character be the main voice in this book. I half-expected to have trouble connecting to her but instead I found myself increasingly fascinated by Nemesis. As the book goes on, everyone's lives begin to unravel. Sidonia's father is participating in a rebellion and when their tyrannical king learns of it, he sends for Sidonia to come stay at court. Fearing the worst, her family sends Nemesis in her place. And this is where, for lack of a better word, Nemesis truly comes alive. Also, the action and political intrigue gets a lot more intense once she's in the thick of it all. Suddenly she's forced to act out emotions, interact with people other than her "family" and learn a game they've all been playing for years. But the best part is that she starts see that maybe there is more to her than what she's been led to believe.

Do I recommend? Yes! It's a great mix of sci-fi, dystopian, mystery and characters I found myself very invested in.


  1. I'm so excited to read Heartless!! I just got it and I can't wait to delve in!

  2. It makes me so happy that you are featuring two books you adored! Heartless was such a great Queen of Hearts origin story, and I loved the way that Marissa managed to make her an ordinary girl that readers could relate to and understand. And, of course, you know I enjoyed The Diabolic! I found the sci-fi elements fascinating and the plot super gripping too.

  3. I am excited to read Heartless--maybe soonish. And I just finished The Diabolic and I really enjoyed it. I was put off a bit by the beginning but was totally into the book by the time I hit the 50 page mark. I really liked that it was solid science fiction and a standalone too.

  4. I saw this the book The Diabolic today and was wondering about it. Thanks!


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