REVIEW – The Empress Game by Rhonda Mason

Empress GameTitle – The Empress Game
Author – Rhonda Mason
Publication Date – July 10th 2015
Genre – Science Fiction/Space Opera
Rating – ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Goodreads | Author’s Website | Buy The Book

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

One seat on the intergalactic Sakien Empire’s supreme ruling body, the Council of Seven, remains unfilled, that of the Empress Apparent. The seat isn’t won by votes or marriage. It’s won in a tournament of ritualized combat in the ancient tradition. Now that tournament, the Empress Game, has been called and the females of the empire will stop at nothing to secure political domination for their homeworlds. Kayla Reinumon, a supreme fighter, is called by a mysterious stranger to battle it out in the arena.

The battle for political power isn’t contained by the tournament’s ring, however. The empire’s elite gather to forge, strengthen or betray alliances in a dance that will determine the fate of the empire for a generation. With the empire wracked by a rising nanovirus plague and stretched thin by an ill-advised planet-wide occupation of Ordoch in enemy territory, everything rests on the woman who rises to the top. – Goodreads Description

This was such a fun read! It was the perfect mix of science fiction and political intrigue (with a little romance thrown in) and it made for such an entertaining book. The characters were really well rounded and I enjoyed reading from the protagonists point of view, she’s such a believable and bad ass character.

The book focuses on Kayla as she tries to protect her younger brother, Corinth as they both hide from a man who helped to kill her family. This leads to her  posing as a competitor in The Empress Game, a competition in which the winner becomes the Empress and a member of the’ Council of Seven’ and therefore holds a powerful position in the political world. Obviously action and drama ensues. Believe me there’s a lot going on and you definitely won’t get bored.

It’s quite an intricate book and the world building and creativity involved leads to you becoming fully attached to the plot and the characters involved. There’s a wide range of alien species and intergalactic politics that are perfectly weaved into the plotline and it’s just really entertaining. The plot twists were so surprising which is rare and I loved most if not all of the characters. It’s probably one of the best science fiction novels I’ve read so far and I can’t wait to see what the sequel holds. I’d definitely recommend checking it out, I loved it! 🙂

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