Nemesis by Anna Banks

Nemesis by Anna Banks

Nemesis by Anna Banks
On Sale Date: October 4, 2016
Young Adult Fiction / Science Fiction
Hardcover | 368 pages
Feiwel & Friends (Macmillan)
Source: Publisher
My Rating: 4 Stars
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

The princess didn't expect to fall in love--with her nemesis.

Princess Sepora of Serubel is the last Forger in all the five kingdoms. The spectorium she creates provides energy for all, but now her father has found a way to weaponize it, and his intentions to incite war force her to flee from his grasp. She escapes across enemy lines into the kingdom of Theoria, but her plans to hide are thwarted when she is captured and placed in the young king's servitude.

Set in a vivid and lush fantasy world, NEMESIS by Anna Banks is the first book in a duet introducing Princess Sepora of Serubel, the last Forger in the Five Kingdoms, who finds herself captured by the neighboring enemy kingdom where she finds herself in service to Tarik, the newly crowned Falcon King of Theoria.

Nemesis reads extremely well combining exciting elements of fantasy, romantic tension, and politics while sprinkling in action and danger throughout - before you realize it you’ve finished the story having not put the book down.

The key plot to the story is simple enough, Princess Sepora is on the run from her power-hungry father who wants to use her gift a the last Forger, an ability that lets her create a rare element called Septorium used for energy, and possibly a weapon by her father, finds herself in enemy territory - right into the heart of the newly appointed king's service - as a servant. 

What Banks weaves into this plot thread is what makes it so appealing to read. The world of the Five Kingdoms is rendered in just enough details to capture your attention, while the principle of being a Forger makes Sepora more than just a runaway princess. Her ability to create and manipulate Septorium adds an interesting layer to the story while putting her in a precarious situation. If she reveals her true identity - it could cost her her freedom and result in war and death by her father. If she doesn’t tell Tarik, it may cost him his kingdom as a plague ravages it as only the Septorium seems to be a cure. I love reads with mistaken identities and Banks does it well here. 

The cover portrays Sepora’s gift/ability really well, a physical one that affects her body as a Forger, it is how she manipulates this metallic silver substance that is really so fascinating to read about. The cover artist obviously tried to capture this and it is fitting once you understand and read the story.

The romance that builds between Tarik and Sepora is filled with all kinds of evanescent tension and banter. If you're wanting a new couple to swoon over than Banks’ Nemesis just might be for you. Tarik is a perfect foil for Sepora. Where she is impulsive and daring he is thoughtful and restrained power. There is one kiss scene, you know - the wait for it kind of kiss, that left me reeling. You need this romance in your life.

The world building is vivid and nuanced with touches of Egyptian and Middle Eastern influences. I enjoyed all the descriptions of Tarik’s kingdom Theoria. Banks weaves in unique creatures from the various kingdoms such as the Parani - finned creatures with webbed hands and humanlike faces and a craving for the flesh of a man. Then there are these gorgeous, powerful flying dragon-like creatures that roam the skies that Sepora knows how to ride and train.

Nemesis balances vivid world building, intrigue, and two strong characters for a fast read. The building romance between Tarik and Sepora makes  it hard to put down. With a heart-stopping, surprise ending - readers will be clamoring for the next installment. A great start to a new series.