Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Diabolic (The Diabolic, #1)” as Want to Read:
The Diabolic (The Diabolic, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Diabolic

(The Diabolic #1)

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  20,587 ratings  ·  3,604 reviews
“The perfect kind of high-pressure adventure.” —
A New York Times bestseller!

Red Queen meets The Hunger Games in this epic novel about what happens when a senator’s daughter is summoned to the galactic court as a hostage, but she’s really the galaxy’s most dangerous weapon in disguise.

A Diabolic is ruthless. A Diabolic is powerful. A Diabolic has a single task:
Kindle Edition, 416 pages
Published November 1st 2016 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Diabolic, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
August Rex Hey, it's the new and improved YA, we're supposed to be training all of our kids to grow up to be killers... (sarcasm intended)…moreHey, it's the new and improved YA, we're supposed to be training all of our kids to grow up to be killers... (sarcasm intended)(less)
Natalie C From SJ Kincaid's tweet, "It was a stand-alone, but now it will have two sequels" So I'm guessing that only one book was planned. But it's popularity …moreFrom SJ Kincaid's tweet, "It was a stand-alone, but now it will have two sequels" So I'm guessing that only one book was planned. But it's popularity made two more books possible(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.06  · 
Rating details
 ·  20,587 ratings  ·  3,604 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Diabolic (The Diabolic, #1)
Miranda Reads
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audiobook

Some might call us a monstrous pair, and they would be right.
There is just something absolutely riveting about getting inside the head of a monster.

Nemesis is a Diabolic - a genetically engineered "thing" designed with one, single purpose. She has to keep Sidonia safe - at any cost.

Sidonia, the only daughter of a minor nobility, is the absolute light of Nemesis's life. The one thing that holds her grounded and sane.

But Sidonia is not without her quirks - she keeps (stubbornly) insisti
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
Re-read on audio just in time for the second book coming tomorrow on Halloween 2017!! And I still freaking love it! Woot! ❤️

I freaking loved this book!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

All the stars baby!

I love Nemesis! She is bad @ssed but a really good diabolic and their not supposed to have feelings, goes to show what they know. She is a lethal weapon but she never really liked what she had to do to learn some things. She had to be trained to kill with no hesitation so she could go o
C.G. Drews
Nov 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
This was very stabby and I LIKED IT. Because, well, I have a small love for all things stabtastic (shh, that's a word) and I loved how we got an actual vicious protagonist here who is all anti-hero and inhumane tendencies and stunted emotions and fantastic at stabbing things and WOW, I JUST REALLY ENJOYED THIS. Although I do not like one of the finale plot twists because #illogical. But pfft. Will I let a few small cantankerous feelings put me off? NO I SHALL NOT. GOOD BOOK IS GOOD.

Also you get
Chelsea Humphrey
Mar 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
That cover is shiny and gorgeous, right? It’s initially what made me start oogling this book from afar and keeping it on my radar for months before finally taking the time to read and review it. I finally had a legit excuse to jump on the bandwagon once my Literary Box copy arrived, and while I’ll go into more detail below, I was so grateful I chose to read their copy with the author’s notes inside. This detail made the difference in my final star rating, which I decided to round up to a 4 on Go ...more

Professional Reader
10 Book Reviews
Reviews Published
♛ may

I am scrolling up and down through The Diabolic reviews and seeing lots of strange things:

4 and 5 star ratings ?????

Average of 4.07 rating from almost 3000 reviews ????



The Diabolic takes place in a sci-fi world where Diabolics are created and chosen to protect their master. Nemesis, our MC, lives to protect and love and care solely for the Senator’s daughter, Sidonia. But when the power-hungry Emperor demands Sidonia as hostage for her f
Feb 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i had a difficult time writing this review because, within the last six months, ive read two other books with very similar premises and it feels like i will just be repeating what i said in those reviews. so i have tried to stay away from comparisons and just talk about what this particular story did well.

and where this book excels is in its world building. the heart of this story is the galactic kingdoms and various planetary commonwealths. the plot is very politically motivated, so what intri
Jessi ♥️ H. Vojsk
Feb 20, 2018 rated it really liked it

“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.”

Story ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Nemesis always thought she was an inhuman machine, a DNA-designed “thing” to protect her beloved Sidonia as a Diabolic.
So when Sidonia is threatened by the Emperor and send to the court of the Emperor, Nemesis secretly goes in her place.
Trying to protect Sidonia and her family Nemesis learns more of humanity by seeing all the friendships, s
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
A soft 4 stars, maybe 3.5. Final review, first posted on Fantasy Literature:

The Diabolic (2016) is set in some distant future, when humans have settled the galaxy using spaceships that travel through hyperspace. Humanity has also been experimenting with genetic engineering, and for a period of time it becomes fashionable to purchase so-called Diabolics as bodyguards. Diabolics are cloned humans, engineered to have superior strength and resistance to sickness and poisons, and trained from early
May 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed this more than I thought I would. Can't wait for the sequel. ...more
Brittney ~ Reverie and Ink
First of all, a huge thanks to Quarterly for sending me this book along with their book box - Literary YA (see more below!)

I was actually quite surprised by this. I'm really not a huge dystopian/sci fi fan (there are exceptions of course.) With other books in that genre, I've found that the world building takes precedence over the characters and is generally confusing. Plus, I'm just a fantasy kinda gal.

All that to say, I actually got quite sucked into this one. It is definitely character drive
3.5 Stars!


The Diabolic is a story about Nemesis. Nemesis is a Diabolic. Diabolics are genetically engineered weapons who are made to bond with one person. Once they do, they will do anything to protect their person. Only the powerful and rich families can afford this type of protection. Sidonia is the daughter of a galactic senator and she is who Nemesis is created for. Donia and Nemesis have a special bond, beyond that of a diabolics. Donia doesn’t see Nemesis as someone to protect her, she
Always Pouting
Feb 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Nemesis is a Diabolic, a creature specially genetically engineered to bond to one person and protect them at all costs. Nemesis is bonded to Sidonia, the heir of a senator, and for whom Nemesis would gladly die. Nemesis's bond to Sidonia is tested though when the Emperor summons Sidonia to court, as punishment for her father's disobedience, and Nemesis must go in place of her. Nemesis will gladly masquerade as Sidonia if it means protecting her life, but everything is complicated more and more a ...more
Nov 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I started this novel with at least semi high expectations based on some reviews I browsed. it met or exceeded all of my expectations. not only a novel on bioethics and the question of the soul but an intriguing space opera.

I confess I am not surprised it met my expectations but am surprised a little at the pace the novel set.

this book didn't contain as much action as I thought it might, but I was enthralled by the world building and the political intrigue and the action was more meaningful by be
Feb 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books, 2018
Wow. What a book! 😮😮😮

The Diabolic is a truly incredible read. Kincaid is a brilliant storyteller. It's full of twists and turns that you genuinely never see coming. It was honestly one of the most unpredictable books I've ever read, and after a while I was suspicious of just about every character and didn't know who to trust or what to believe!

The only reason why it doesn't get a perfect 5 star rating is because the flaws of this book are still sitting with me days after finishing. If it was me
Yknow, having reread this a second time, it made me notice things. Before, and admittedly, while reading this, I'd been so blindly enamoured with Tyrus.
But there's something off, something too strange for me and so I am no longer like that.
I do wonder how it will bode in the sequels.
you can find this review on my blog as well!
And I so badly want to read it again. This book was BRILLIANT.
Like I've mentioned before, this book is NOTHIN
Cindy ✩☽♔
*ARC Review*

"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."

The perfect blend of dystopian and sci-fi. A story of friendship, humanity, family, politics and love.

Despite the initial pitch, this book is not Red Queen, though I do see where potential similarities may be drawn from. (view spoiler)
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5/5 stars 🌟 I am so shook by this book right now because I was not expecting to love it this so much?? Nemesis’s character was just so damn interesting to read about and the plot twists in this story made me not want to put it down. And boiiii the romance got me real bad I loved it 😍 I am not a big fan of politics but combined with science fiction I realised that I didn’t really mind it much in this story! Really looking forward to what’s to come next ❤️
Oct 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
3.5 stars

This was fun, fast-paced, and intriguing. Can't wait to read the sequel.
Chesca (thecrownedpages)
“Perhaps scorpions were the only ones who could save each other.
Whatever lay ahead, it would always be the two of us above the rest of the universe, and woe to any who dared step in our path.”

667 stars!
Buddy-read with: Samantha (A History of Books)
for The Quarterly Book Club's 2017 1st Quarter - Kickass Female Leads

Nemesis was a Diabolic, designed to defend one person and kill all the others who posed as threat to her master. All
Oct 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-releases
4.5 stars

***Review posted on The Eater of Books! blog***

The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: November 1, 2016
Rating: 4 stars
Source: ARC sent by the publisher

Summary (from Goodreads):

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 grow
Aj the Ravenous Reader
“To care was to be helpless in the worst possible way.”

This year is about to end but I could only count with my fingers books that really wowed me. I didn’t expect Diabolic was going to be one of them. That cover though very simple and unassuming is also completely gorgeous and captivating. It’s honestly one of the reasons why I bought the hardback and it pleases me to the bones to finally fully connect with the symbol at the front cover after reading the story. It’s perfect!

The story is wr
Mar 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi, dystopia, y-a
This book totally surprised me. It was the Donald Trump of books because it really grabbed my attention and wouldn't let it go.

*whispers* never let me go...

If you were a fan of Red Rising, you will really like this one. It has the same feel with a fake identity, court & political intrigues, twisty turns, lots of bloody death, and a bunch of insanity. There were so many times when you weren't sure who was trying to kill who. I loved that!

Our heroine is Nemesis, who is a genetically engineered bod
Oct 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was an awesome read! I've had it on my bookshelf since around the time it came out but never got around to reading it for some reason or another. I am so glad I finally did! The world building does not override the plot, which I love since extended world building tends to annoy me. The characters are mostly vicious but that just adds to the story.

Overall, I enjoyed it so much that before even coming to review it on Goodreads, I went to Amazon and preordered the sequel that comes out this H
Aug 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya-books, sci-fi
I had high hopes for The Diabolic because the blurb grabbed my attention and made it sound like just the sort of sci-fi book I love to read. The actual story definitely delivered on the promise of the blurb. S. J. Kincaid had an engaging writing style and I loved both the characters and the story itself. The world building was a little simplistic but it was effective so it did not hurt the story.

A Diabolic is a genetically engineered human designed to protect the human it is bonded to at all co
Veronica ⭐️
Oct 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult, 2017
Wow! I loved this book. It’s fast paced and nasty.
The story is narrated by Nemesis. She is a Diabolic. Bred to protect their bonded human. They have no feelings, no love, fear or empathy, only a fierce loyalty to the person they are bonded to. Only thing is Nemesis has felt fear and empathy, but when it comes down to kill or be killed, she will kill.

Nemesis’ role is to protect Sidonia and when Sidonia’s father, Senator Von Impyrean, displeases the Emperor and Sidonia is summoned to the courts he
Jul 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Wow, I didn't think I was going to finish this book in just one day, but once I started I could not stop ... this was such a thrilling ride to witness. Picture this , an intergalactic empire on the brinks of revolution, the elite having forsaken knowledge as something esoteric and punishing anyone who pursues knowledge to the point of murder . Diabolical are genetically modified creatures who are bonded to once person for life and then they will protect that person for the rest of their lives ev ...more
Dec. 31, 2016

from 1 star to 4 stars ...
Guys... I know! I know! ^-^

The early chapters of this book were indeed very difficult for me that's why I dnf this. But then, I remembered that I'm doing a buddy reading with a friend on another app, Books Amino, so I continued and really tried to get over my first impression.

Yes, I will stand by what I said that I couldn't relate with the characters at first and the story was difficult for me to get through. Maybe it's because this is my first sci-fi re
Jan 10, 2017 marked it as to-read
Edit: okay so I just recently saw sequels to this?? Omfg I thought it was going to be a stand alone read.

I'm not in the mood for this right now. I'll probably pick this up again in a year or so lmao.
Well that took a while to get through, but overall a well written stand-a-lone. I did feel the book dragged on and there was a lot of exhaustive scenes with tons of build-up. Kind of felt the ending was rushed or maybe that just me? I did feel the faith versus science war would have made a better story-line than this problematic political family.. Yikes! The coolest part about the entire book was reading about their advancements such as med bots, beauty bots and even zero gravity dancing. That w ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Carve the Mark (Carve the Mark, #1)
  • Skyhunter (Skyhunter, #1)
  • This Mortal Coil (This Mortal Coil, #1)
  • Renegades (Renegades, #1)
  • Everless (Everless, #1)
  • An Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes, #1)
  • Legendborn (Legendborn, #1)
  • The Shadows Between Us
  • Frostblood (Frostblood Saga, #1)
  • My dilemma is you 4 (My Dilemma is You, #4)
  • Il tuo pericoloso sorriso
  • Te Quiero con Helado
  • To Kill a Kingdom
  • Ash Princess (Ash Princess Trilogy, #1)
  • The Inheritance Games (The Inheritance Games, #1)
  • The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air, #2)
  • Kingdom of the Wicked (Kingdom of the Wicked, #1)
  • Serpent & Dove (Serpent & Dove, #1)
See similar books…

Other books in the series

The Diabolic (3 books)
  • The Empress (The Diabolic, #2)
  • The Nemesis (Diabolic, #3)

Articles featuring this book

From the sprawling territories of Erilea to the 12 districts of Panem, YA superfans have covered a lot of familiar ground. To...
183 likes · 106 comments
“It’s terrifying to realize your own decisions are shaping your destiny.” 38 likes
“Perhaps scorpions were the only ones who could save each other.
Whatever lay ahead, it would always be the two of us above the rest of the universe, and woe to any who dared step in out path.”
More quotes…