Book Review: ‘Kingdom of the Wicked’ by Kerri Maniscalco

“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…” (Amazon)

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for my e-copy of this book.

Review of Kingdom of the Wicked by Kerri Maniscalco

Kerri Maniscalco’s Kingdom of the Wicked has been such a rollercoaster of emotions. I haven’t read anything by the author previously, but I have heard great things about Stalking Jack the Ripper series, and I certainly will be reading it after that.

Kingdom of the Wicked follows Emilia as she tries to find a person (or supernatural being) responsible for her twin sister’s death. Emilia and Vittoria have been raised on their grandmother’s stories that were meant to make them more careful. That were meant to keep them safe, even if their grandmother has known what’s coming. I really loved the setting of Kingdom of the Wicked. Witches in the 19th century Italy, with all the delicious food around, created such a lovely atmosphere in the book and added charm to both characters and the story itself. 

Emilia is an interesting character. Quieter and calmer than her sister, she would rather help out in the family restaurant or get lost in the book than wander around in the search of the adventure. But filled with anger and desire for vengeance in the aftermath of Vitorria’s death, she definitely changes. While understandably revenge, anger and grief are what fuels her the most, it is also great to see that she becomes more confident in her abilities as the story unfolds.

The dynamic between Emilia and Wrath, one of the Princes of Hell has been ever changing and kept the reader on his toes. Similarly, I found Emilia’s interactions with other Princes of Hell interesting and full of action and drama. Although there have been moments when the characters felt a bit unbelievable or acting out of the character, at most parts, it has been explained or uncovered by the end of the book. I have enjoyed the ending, even if the cliff-hanger makes me slightly regret reading the book now… I think you know you have enjoyed the story when you turn the last page on your Kindle, and you just want more immediately.

I have been lucky to read this book before the publication date in the continuation of my theme of spooky and witchy reads this autumn season. Kingdom of the Wicked has definitely found me in the right moment.

Who is the book for: It’s a book for YA fantasy lovers, and I’m certain that those who previously enjoyed Kerri Maniscalco’s writing will want to get their hands on this book. Kingdom of the Wicked has been officially released yesterday, and you can get your copy here.


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