Kingdom of the Cursed by Kerri Maniscalco – Review

52772417. sx318 Rating: 4.5 stars

Published: 2021

Genre: Fantasy, NA

Author: Kerri Maniscalco

Synopsis: One sister.
Two sinful princes.
Infinite deception with a side of revenge…Welcome to Hell.

After selling her soul to become Queen of the Wicked, Emilia travels to the Seven Circles with the enigmatic Prince of Wrath, where she’s introduced to a seductive world of vice.

She vows to do whatever it takes to avenge her beloved sister, Vittoria…even if that means accepting the hand of the Prince of Pride, the king of demons.

***SPOILER ALERT*** This is the second book in the series and therefore the following review may contain spoilers for the first book. Read at your own peril. Review of the first book here.

***

This was every bit as addictive as the first one, I’ve been trying to get over my book hangover for the past 3 days and I have so far valiantly resisted the temptation to immediately re-read it. I even felt compelled to write this review, despite having completely ignored this blog for the better part of this year. Anyways, let’s talk about it. 

First thing to mention about this book is that is without a doubt character driven. Not a whole lot happens plot-wise. Instead, the focus is mainly the romance (and this is written as new adult, so it gets pretty steamy) and on Emilia adjusting to the Underworld. We get to meet some of Wrath’s other brothers, we get to meet some of Wrath’s court and of course, we get to know more about our favourite Prince of Hell (or my favourite anyway). I personally really enjoyed it, but it’s less plot driven than the previous book. Though it ends on a similar cliffhanger and I suspect there will be a lot more happening story wise in the next one. 

I loved seeing the underworld. Very Dante-esque, was very fun to get to see some of it. I would have loved for there to be more exploration of the Underworld if anything. But what we did get to see was very lush and decadent. There was a lot of sexual tension going around so if that’s your thing, you’re all covered. I’m personally not the biggest fan of smut, but this was actually pretty good. Didn’t make me cringe too much and was even occasionally enjoyable. Which is quite high praise coming from me.

Despite this being predominantly character driven, we did get a few story progression points and Emilia had a big eureka moment towards the end of the book. Although I do think that was actually a weak point of the book, as I felt that the main plot twist lacked impact. I can’t really elaborate on that too much without spoilers, but let’s just say that I think it should have had a much much higher emotional impact on Emilia. She just kinda shrugged it off. In fact, she had much stronger emotional responses to comparatively less important events. Which just kind of felt unrealistic and made the plot twist much less powerful. 

Some random observations: I was happy that the food descriptions were toned down in this book. I found them very distracting in the first book and they constantly pulled me out of the story. The lack of communication between Wrath and Emilia continues in this book especially at the beginning, but they definitely get better. Wrath is still super dreamy. And also a cutie. Okay I’m done. Read this book, it’s fun. 

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