Another day, another book review. Kingdom of the Wicked is one I got in a subscription box, so I’m getting a teeny-tiny bit closer to finally catching up with all of those novels!
The Plot (according to Goodreads):
One brutal murder.
A quest for vengeance that will unleash Hell itself…
And an intoxicating romance.
Emilia and her twin sister Vittoria are streghe – witches who live secretly among humans, avoiding notice and persecution. One night, Vittoria misses dinner service at the family’s renowned Sicilian restaurant. Emilia soon finds the body of her beloved twin…desecrated beyond belief. Devastated, Emilia sets out to find her sister’s killer and to seek vengeance at any cost-even if it means using dark magic that’s been long forbidden.
Then Emilia meets Wrath, one of the Wicked-princes of Hell she has been warned against in tales since she was a child. Wrath claims to be on Emilia’s side, tasked by his master with solving the series of women’s murders on the island. But when it comes to the Wicked, nothing is as it seems…
When I reached the last page of this I had two problems: It’s over. It’s not over. You see, when I opened this book, I didn’t realize it’s the first in a series. I kept expecting more information and just more resolution but then the novel ended and it was a cliffhanger! 😅
Anyhow, I mourned for a second but then got excited that there would be way more space to explore the concept Maniscalco came up with. Let’s talk about that for a second!
You know what’s interesting about this story? I couldn’t for the life of me pinpoint what time this was set in! Whenever I thought I have an approximation, something threw off my guess. But that’s a me problem, I guess.
In general, I did enjoy the world-building. As you know, I’m always down for witches and I liked the addition of demons we get here. It’s an interesting concept with lots of rules to it. I’m still a little fuzzy on some of the specifics, but I’m confident we’ll get to explore that in the next novel. The demon banter was pretty cool, and I love that we get to explore the personification of the cardinal sins! Again, thumbs up for the concept!
Although there is certainly a lot going on in this book, there are still many loose ends. Maybe I was just very thrown off because I expected a finished story here, but there is so much that did not get resolved here! I have so many more questions I need answers to! Or maybe it’s just Maniscalco’s style? I haven’t yet read her Stalking Jack the Ripper series, so I’d be grateful if somebody in the comments could enlighten me! 😉
Apart from that, I really liked Kingdom of the Wicked. The concept is great, as is the world-building. The character development is well done and I’m curious about the next book. So, Maniscalco certainly did a lot of things right here! I really hope we’ll get some answers then, otherwise, I’ll be so disappointed. The idea Maniscalco had here has a lot of potential, so let’s keep our fingers crossed that the next installment will live up to that!
I do, however, have one complaint. It’s one that my regular readers have suffered through many a time but I do not get tired of bringing it to the table. Why, WHY, is there always a romance angle incorporated in these books! You’d think with all the murder, the demons, and the witch-craft there is enough going on. The main character has so much shit to deal with, how does she have time to simp over somebody? Can we – just once – not do that? Please and thank you.
Overall, I really enjoyed Kingdom of the Wicked. I’m so curious how this story will continue in the next novel. I’m 100% down for the concept and I need some answers!
Did you read this book? Let me know in the comments what you think!